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La Mercy Update Media Statement May 2008
Monday, June 09, 2008 | 00:00

The new international airport at La Mercy is taking great shape and although it has, historically not been a very smooth ride to get to the level it is now, it is rapidly becoming part of the Durban and KZN skyline.

The magnitude of the multi billion rand project has construction work taking place at about six areas on the vast site. With a project of this nature it is interesting to note the quantity off the materials being used on the site on a daily basis. Some of the interesting facts on the construction site include:

Material Quantity Equivalent to:
Runway & Taxiways  400 000 m2  100 Soccer Pitches
Terminal Floor Area 103 000 m2 27 Soccer Pitches
Earthworks 5.8 Million m3  2500 Olympic Swimming Pools
Concrete  100 000has, hi m3  50 Olympic Swimming Pools
Structural Steel 4 700 tonnes ½ the Eiffel Tower
Asphalt  230 000 tonnes  35 Km of 4 lane highway

There is about 100 park homes that on site which houses the various contractors and their staff which consists of over 2100 contractors and sub contractors. About 200 earth moving equipment has already moved about 4 million tons of earth on the site.

Due to the pace of the construction, it is very noticeable that the shape and scale of some of the construction areas on the site take a different shape as the weeks go by. Considering the fact that the completion target is set for the 1st quarter of 2010, some areas have had some major construction activities recently:

  • Piling was completed on the northern elevated roadway ramp.
  • The terminal building basement retaining walls have been completed.
  • Concrete slab has been poured for the terminal building arrivals hall.
  • Work has commenced on the construction of the northern ramp of the elevated roadway to the departures level.
  • Casting of concrete for the multi storey parking commenced including casting of the retaining walls of the cargo building.
  • Work on the control tower and the lift shaft is in progress.
  • The design and construction of the cargo building is in progress.
  • The runways and taxiways are on program with the road bed preparation on the shoulders of the taxiways been completed.
  • The Tradezone area is being cut filled with bush clearing in progress.

Airports Company South Africa (ACSA), together with the Dube TradePort (DTP) has a team on site to work with the contractor, the Ilembe Consortium. Heading the project for ACSA, Sean van der Valk, Project Manager, said, “We are working together with the contractor and the professional teams on site to manage the project but also to ensure the project is delivered on time”. He added, “As this green field project is going to be an historical event we are working towards delivering a world class facility with the co-operation and in consultation of all the relevant stakeholders”.  

Issued by:  Colin Naidoo 
Manager: Communications and Brand 
Durban International and National Airports
Airports Company South Africa   


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