Featured Company: Marx Concrete Pipes (Pty) Ltd

Who’s who in your Industry? This week we are featuring Marx Concrete Pipes (Pty) Ltd


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About Jennifer Ellis

I Started working with Leads 2 Business in 2007 and been based in Port Elizabeth as a Senior account Executive. I oversee the Subscriber base in the Port Elizabeth and surrounds region as well as some National subscribers.

Featured Company: ISE Group (Pty) Ltd

Who’s who in your Industry? This week we are featuring ISE Group (Pty) Ltd

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About Jennifer Ellis

I Started working with Leads 2 Business in 2007 and been based in Port Elizabeth as a Senior account Executive. I oversee the Subscriber base in the Port Elizabeth and surrounds region as well as some National subscribers.

Common causes of Construction delays

posted in: General 0

Common causes of Construction delays.

What is a construction delay? Well in lamens terms anything that prevents a site from moving forward is a delay.

There are many different causes of construction delays However many of them can be prevented.

Weather, well we all might be thinking that we cannot control the weather, which is 100% correct, however one can watch the weather forecasts closely and plan ahead as far as possible.
There are many reliable weather sites available to us now days, so one should make use of them and plan accordingly IE one cannot lay roof sheets if you are expecting gale force winds, and you cannot pour concrete when it is raining.

There is however an old saying in the industry “ rain before 7 clears by 11” not too sure how true this is but it’s something I have heard many times before.

  • Insufficient funding, Oh yes MONEY can make or break a site. If the budget is not sufficient enough then this can have an enormous impact on the project, or if funding is not adequately released during the correct phases of the project then this too can have a huge impact, as this impacts delivery of goods, wage payments etc.
  • Decision making, Yip you heard right, if the Client cannot make up their mind during the project then this will cause serious delays, as well as if the client is changing their mind constantly, as the contractor and their subbies must now sit and wait for the final decision because if the contractor make his own decision then the client might not pay.
  • Poor Coordination. Now I am sure that we have all heard contractors blaming subbies and subbies blaming contractors , however it boils down to poor coordination / Time planning, if a contractor does not order their materials timeously the manufacturer cannot produce it on time , causing delays. If the Subcontractor or manufacturer does not plan ahead, and manage their own production correctly this too will cause delays.
  • Unskilled labour, Many people think it’s quite easy to lay bricks, or to tile, piping etc. when in actual fact if you do not know what it is that you are doing it will cost the site time and money to break done what has been done in order to fix it if it has not been done correctly leading in the obvious Time delays.
  • Incorrect designs, Yes designs…. If the professional consultant has not done all the correct designs, just a simple error can cost a huge time delay on site to try and correct or amend to make the design work again…
  • Then there is the ever popular Labour issue which is so common in South Africa. If you’re Labourers or SMME’s are not in agreement with regards to rates or wages, they often shut down an entire site and no further construction will commence until the dispute has been resolved.
  • Community related issues, this can cause huge delays , especially if there has not been a community buy in on the project, because the project is been done within their community, it needs to be of benefit to them, and if they do not feel it is for the better of them, they will be stopping the project as well.

This leaves me to the conclusion that it’s definitely quite a stressful job being in the construction industry as everything needs to run like a well-oiled machine.

PLAN, PLAN, PLAN!

 

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About Jennifer Ellis

I Started working with Leads 2 Business in 2007 and been based in Port Elizabeth as a Senior account Executive. I oversee the Subscriber base in the Port Elizabeth and surrounds region as well as some National subscribers.

Under Water and Marine Construction

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Under water construction

Under water and Marine Construction

So whilst many of us think of underwater construction we think of it as a more modern building technique and we think of all the construction in Dubai, however in fact underwater construction actually dates as far back as to 23 BCE where Roman builders constructed the largest artificial harbour ever built in the open sea to date. Caeserea Maritima, where the remains can still be found.

Under water and Marine Construction

We then have more modern examples of underwater construction like Lake Kariba where construction started in 1955 and was completed in 1959 and cost around 480 million USD.
We also have the world’s first underwater hotel built of the coast of Key Largo Florida which was actually a research facility dating back to the 1970’s La Chalupa Research Laboratory which has been converted into a hotel, named Under The Sea Lodge which opened it’s doors to guests in 1986. This building is completely underwater and is only accessible by scuba diving more than 6 meters down and gaining access via a “moon pool” which is located under the building.
We then have the mega structures in Dubai where they have taken underwater construction to new depths constructing islands and underwater hotels and water theme parks like The Palms and Atlantis.

Under water and Marine Construction

So how does one actually build underwater?
Well you have to firstly create a stable and dry environment in which to build in order to work in the environment and place concrete in it.

We have basically two different methods / techniques in which to build underwater.
Firstly we have Cofferdams, which are temporary structures normally used where the construction area is larger and the water depth less, you also get different types of cofferdams.

  • Earthen cofferdams,
  • Doubled Cofferdams
  • Rockfill Cofferdams
  • Single walled Cofferdams
  • Crib cofferdams
  • Cellular cofferdams

Cofferdams are normally used for constructing bridge piers and other supporting structures

Then you get Caissons which are more permanent large hollow watertight structures which are used for repairing bridge foundations and dams.

Under water and Marine Construction

You also get different type of caissons, namely:

  • Box Caissons
  • Open Caisson
  • Suction Caisson
  • Pneumatic Caisson

A good example of construction using Caissons is the Port of Ngquru just outside Port Elizabeth, which used 5 Caissons anchoring the ends of the breakwaters which required 18 000m³ of reinforced concrete.

So whilst there are different types of underwater construction it remains quite a complex and challenging construction method testing the boundaries of construction in general.

 

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About Jennifer Ellis

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L2B Blog: 10 Simple ways to go green

posted in: General 3

Have you ever wondered about Going Green but think “well it’s too expensive“ or “too time consuming”… Well, I have done some research into this and found that it’s easier than we think, here are 10 simple ways to go green.

 

1) Recycled Polystyrene – Ever wondered what happens to all those polystyrene cups we use …? well there are actually companies that recycle these items and manufacture lightweight building blocks. These blocks have so many benefits, namely, its superior insulation and it’s lightweight so transportation is much easier and more cost effective, it’s also fireproof, water resistant as well as soundproof. This product has so many benefits I wonder why so few people know about it as it’s super cost effective too…

 

Did you Know the New Table Bay Mall is being built using 15 tons of Recycled Polystyrene? For details on this Project, see PPA 16176 and 16177

 

2) ECO friendly / Green Paints – Many people only know about the traditional paints we use and the big names like Plascon, Dulux etc however interestingly enough there are ECO friendly paints out there, they have so many benefits i.e. non toxic and odourless so very effective for use in hospitals, schools etc, you even get waterproofing paints which are ideal for ponds etc. They are fire retardant too as well as flexible, they have so many benefits it’s surprising that these paints are not as common as the other major brands.

 

3) Energy Star Products – Most of us have seen the Energy Star label on our computers. Ever wondered what the energy star label on your appliance is there for? .. well, I have just learnt that it’s for energy efficient appliances, which means that these products have been independently certified to save you energy without sacrificing the features or functionalities of the product.

 

4) Light Bulbs – Changing your light bulb to a fluorescent or LED energy saving one helps protect the environment as well

 

5) Rainwater harvesting – By collecting rain water from roof tops and gutters you can accumulate more than enough water to wash cars, water gardens and top up swimming pools and ponds. Companies like Jo-Jo have a wide variety of products to suit your needs for rainwater harvesting

 

6) Grey water usage – Did you know that on average a toilet uses approx 5 litres of water per flush, if an average household of 4 people flush the toilet only 5 times a day, you can use 100 litres of water just on flushing the toilet, however, if you were to collect shower or bath water for flushing, you would knock off a minimum of 3 000 litres off your bill every month. Next time you run the bath for the kids think again before lifting the plug and letting the water go down the drain. Collect your washing machine water in tanks or buckets and water the garden or even flush the toilet with that. There are so many creative ways to save water, you can even get fancy and get pumps to pump the grey water to where you need or you can skip the gym and carry buckets around …

 

7) Energy efficient windows – I have never really thought about this before but did you know that your windows can account for approximately 30% of your heat loss during winter and heat gain during summer. Some very clever people have made double glazed windows which is basically two pieces of glass in a window pane with a very tiny gap in-between that traps air which, assists with Insulating the window’s, so next time you have to replace a window consider going this option, it will definitely save you on the heating/cooling costs of your property.

 

8) Solar – Now by now we are all pretty much clued up / familiar with solar energy, you can either install a solar geyser of solar panels to go partially off the grid or even completely off the grid. There are so many companies out there which can assist one with solar installations and although it might be a bit costly initially, in the long run, it will definitely pay off. The only problem is when Eskom decides to do load shedding again, you might some pesky unwanted neighbours camping out at your place

 

9) Cleaning Supplies – We spend hundreds of rands every month on cleaning chemicals, now not only are they expensive but they are very harmful to the environment too. Ever thought of making your own cleaning chemicals? Here are some simple ways to do so –
– All purpose cleaner – 2 cups of water, ½ cup vinegar & 1 tsp bicarbonate soda
– Glass Cleaner – 1 cup white vinegar & 1 cup water
– Disinfectant – 1 cup water & 1 cup rubbing alcohol

If you are anything like me, you will add the rubbing alcohol or lemon juice to everything for a disinfectant. You can find plenty DIY cleaning material recipes in Pinterest.

 

10) Plastic bags – Well, now this one is probably more for the ladies as it’s regarding shopping, but the men might want to know as well as this will save you more…

Did you know that a normal plastic shopping packet can cost between 30c and 60c? What do you do with that packet afterwards, do you keep them in the car for the next shop, but they tear so easily? Why not buy shopping bags, the sturdy ones that Spar, Pick n Pay and Woolworths sell. Yes, they are more expensive ranging from R12 to R40 but they last longer and will save you money in the long run. Also, some of these shops donate a portion to various wildlife funds.

 

Thank you for taking the time to read my Blog I hope that you found it interesting.

Good luck Going Green…

 

Sources:

http://www.conserve-energy-future.com/top-15-green-home-building-techniques-and-ideas.php

http://www.lafarge.co.za/Ultra_Light_Brochure_01.pdf

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About Jennifer Ellis

I Started working with Leads 2 Business in 2007 and been based in Port Elizabeth as a Senior account Executive. I oversee the Subscriber base in the Port Elizabeth and surrounds region as well as some National subscribers.