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2020 / 2021 Edition

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Sustainable concrete for Silvertown Tunnel

Capital Concrete

Capital Concrete supply sustainable concrete mixes for landmark tunnel project in East London

CAPITAL Concrete have been working with Keltbray Group to supply sustainable concrete for the construction engineering specialist’s piling operations for the Silvertown Tunnel – a landmark project in East London.

The Silvertown Tunnel scheme (STT) will link north and south London from North Greenwich to the Royal Victoria Dock area. The project involves the construction of a 1.4km long, twin-bore road tunnel under the river Thames, following a similar route to the Emirates airline’s cable car.

As well as alleviating congestion in the Blackwall Tunnel, the scheme will encourage economic growth for East London and move traffic underground, helping to improve air quality.

Capital Concrete are supplying Keltbray with innovative concrete mixes that replace cement with low-carbon alternatives. Included amongst the supplied mixes is Earth Friendly Concrete (EFC), a zero-cement geopolymer material designed by Australian materials firm Wagners and exclusively licensed for supply by Capital Concrete in London.

Typically offering between a 75% and 87% saving in embodied carbon compared with standard mixes, EFC’s performance is said to be at least equal to, if not greater than, traditional concrete, especially in maritime settings.

Sustainable concrete solutions such as EFC support the STT project’s environmental focus, with the use of low-carbon mixes and geopolymer concrete alternatives aligning with the UK Government’s decarbonization commitments.

Jack Sindhu, technical manager for Capital Concrete, commented: ‘The use of low-carbon concrete mixes is a forward-thinking approach that delivers our client’s environmental obligations.

‘Importantly, high-quality performance is not compromised in our low-carbon mixes either, and, given the need to achieve strength compliance at 56 days, it enabled optimized mix designs to be created with lower embodied carbon content and a heightened structural integrity.’

The concrete is being supplied to Keltbray via Capital Concrete’s high-output wet-batch concrete plant at Silvertown, adjacent to Peruvian Wharf. The new 300 cubic metres per hour concrete plant is well positioned to supply the nearby Silvertown Tunnel site, and its proximity helps reduce the carbon footprint of transportation.

Located next to the river Thames, the new plant also receives its aggregates by boat and barge, further reducing the project’s overall traffic and carbon emissions.

Capital Concrete’s managing director, Luke Smith, said: ‘We are delighted to be teaming up with Keltbray and Wagners again, supplying bespoke concrete products that are setting the standard for accountable construction. Our mutual interest in environmentally friendly concrete solutions has only grown stronger whilst working on this project to create a more connected London.’

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