The West Australian exclusive

Albany silos get a $3.5m hydrodemolition facelift

Headshot of Cally Dupe
Cally DupeCountryman
JJ Concrete at work on the CBH Albany Grain Terminal.
Camera IconJJ Concrete at work on the CBH Albany Grain Terminal. Credit: Laurie Benson

Concrete silos at CBH’s Albany Grain Terminal are undergoing a $3.5 million makeover to make sure they last long into the future.

CBH’s local maintenance team at Albany and local contractors broke ground on the project in April and are expected to be finished by the end of August.

The work involves a combination of concrete remediation and corrosion prevention works on “affected areas of several storage structures” at the terminal.

This includes hydro demolishing a 70mm layer of concrete in areas affected by spalling and corrosion.

CBH Albany maintenance superintendent Machiel Moolman said spalling occurred when moisture infiltrated the structure, causing the internal steel reinforcing to corrode.

“The expansion of the corroding steel causes the outer layer of concrete to delaminate and reduce structural integrity,” he said.

“This work will strengthen the structural integrity of the asset.”

JJ CRC at work on the CBH Albany Grain Terminal.
Camera IconJJ CRC at work on the CBH Albany Grain Terminal. Credit: Laurie Benson

Three silos and one annex storage unit are being blasted with high-pressure water to erode away concrete around the internal steel reinforcement.

That concrete is then replaced and minor maintenance carried out each year to maintain the assets.

Mr Moolman said the hydro demolition process was 10-15 times quicker than removing the concrete with demolition hammers.

He said CBH was “really pleased” with the progress of the project, which was progressing on time and on budget.

CBH Albany acting terminal manager Richard Doak.
Camera IconCBH Albany acting terminal manager Richard Doak. Credit: Albany Advertiser

“The project is part of our ongoing network investment,” Mr Moolman said.

“It falls within the sustaining capital work that CBH undertakes to increase the useful life of equipment and assets at receival sites and ports.”

CBH chief operations officer Ben MacNamara said the works had been “contemplated for a number of years” and sat within CBH’s sustaining capital works program.

“On the back of strengthened systems and processes at CBH, we have been able to prioritise this work to extend the life of these assets,” he said.

“The aim of the projects is to enhance the useful life of the asset.

“So for some projects, this may be resource and capital intensive at the start, however the asset will only need regular maintenance thereafter.”

Mundaring’s JJ Concrete Civil Maintenance and Construction was appointed the lead contractor for the project, while Albany‘s Al Sandblasting was awarded the blast and paint contract.

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