Work is progressing well on the new 12,000 m³ reservoir and associated pipework on Namibia’s northern-most border with Angola. Progress is over 60% and completion is expected to be well in advance of the contractual completion date of 12 April 2018.
The design and construction of the reservoir – awarded by the Namibia Water Corporation Ltd (NamWater) in October 2016 – is being conducted by a joint venture between B&K Civils and Windhoek-based Rock Leigh Investments.
The concrete reservoir situated near the Ndama Water Treatment Plant is being built to expand the water storage capacity in the Kavango-region. The current storage capacity at Rundu is insufficient to sustain the target area for the recommended 48 hour period. The new facility has been designed to cater for increased future water storage demands for this arid region.
According to B&K Civils’ project engineer, Antoni Botes, an interesting aspect of the project is that the reservoir foundation was constructed using the so-called RIC method or Rapid Impact Compaction.
“This methodology entails the use of a specially designed compaction unit fitted to the front of an excavator. It compacts the raft foundation at a grid spacing of 4.5 metres,” Botes explains. “The kinetic energy of this compaction technique is sufficient to densify the soil up to a depth of at least 5 metres and will provide the necessary bearing capacity to ensure the long term durability and stability of the reservoir.”
The remote location of the town – over 700 km north of the capital Windhoek and just south of the Cubango River – presents a logistical challenge for the consistent supply of the necessary high quality building materials used in the construction process.
“While this could be challenging for some contractors, our teams are well versed in operating in remote regions,” Botes says. “Streamlined logistics processes and careful planning ensures that all materials reach the project site on time. Adding to this are our stringent quality control procedures and the diligence applied by our quality control team, which will ensure the final product is of high quality and will meet the client’s specifications.”
Significantly since the Botes & Kennedy Group, which includes B&K Civils, began operations in 1980, the group has built more than 60 concrete water retaining structures in Namibia and South Africa.
“It is perhaps significant that our very first project was a water retaining structure; a 2,500 m³ reservoir with a 1,700 m³ pressure tower integrated into the reservoir,” says Botes. In the period since then, the company has undertaken numerous projects around Namibia, including a 20,000 m³ as well as a 16,000 m³ reservoir near Swakopmund.
“In all our work, we apply the highest standards of engineering quality and environmental protection, and this carries through to all phases of building and construction activities,” Botes says.