WKC Group

Athlone Cooling Towers Demolition, Cape Town, South Africa Case Study


Courtesy of WKC Group

The Athlone Cooling Towers in Cape Town, South Africa, were condemned due to structural damage caused by the heavy Cape winds. A decision was taken to demolish the Cooling Towers, despite the technical challenges and potential risk to nearby populations that this posed.

In 2011, Knight Piesold was appointed as project manager to assist with the demolition of the Athlone Cooling Towers, by the City of Cape Town. WKC formed part of a specialist team and were tasked with the development of an air quality, noise and vibration management plan for the project.

Dust, noise and vibration were of particular concern given the proximity of the cooling towers to the adjacent residential areas. The controlled demolition was considered “technically perfect” and was completed within budget. In recognition of this achievement the project received an engineering excellence award. The CESA Engineering Awards considers itself “a celebration of innovation, quality, outstanding workmanship and professionalism in the industry” and “a platform to showcase the important role that infrastructure plays in the sustainable development.”

WKC were delighted to have played an important role in the success of this project, with the emphasis on ensuring local populations were protected from excessive dust, noise and vibration. WKC were personally congratulated as part of the Engineering Excellence Award that the project team received.

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