Saudi building world’s 2nd deepest pumping station

Contractor Abuljadayel has used formwork and shoring systems provided by RMD Kwikform to support construction of the North Jeddah pumping station in Saudi Arabia.

The pumping station will be the world’s second deepest. It has a screen shaft and two pumping shafts, each of which has a total drop of more than 72m into the ground. There is also a three-stage collection chamber, various auxiliary buildings and permanent site offices.

It is designed to deal with growing demand as Jeddah’s population rises and is part of a US$1.1bn investment programme funded by Saudi Arabia’s National Water Company. Construction is expected to be completed in June 2013. Once operational, the Pumping station is designed to pump a maximum flow of 1,125,000m3 per day, ensuring enough capacity to cope with future predictions for population growth.

Each shaft is 68m deep. The screen shaft has a 4.5m thick concrete base slab and each pumping shaft has a 5.5m thick base slab. Before RMD Kwikform started supplying formwork, the contractor constructed the circular diaphragm walls using 2.4m concrete panels. Once excavated to full depth, the 1.2m shaft thick wall was constructed, followed in succession by the bottom slab.

Mohammed Asif from RMD Kwikform said: “When we were faced with the shoring challenge of supporting a slab 68m high, but underground in a confined space with very little room to play with, we recognised there were two key hurdles to the project, the first being safety and the second logistics. Having had previous experience using Rapidshor on major bridge projects, we knew the equipment was structurally capable of dealing with the load, and due to it being a modular system, installation was more straightforward within the confines of the shafts.”