Several months ago, I asked my staff at SAICE National Office why they work at SAICE. At the end of our discussion, three convictions surfaced. The first being that we don't work at SAICE, we serve. We serve South Africa's civil engineering professionals because we believe in the power of civil engineering, which makes a positive impact in the socio-economic state of our nation. Secondly, we believe that you as our members chose a career in civil engineering, because you believe that you make a difference in the lives of your families, communities and our country. Finally we believe that you fight for a good cause - you are in a battle that is worth fighting, and in serving you, we at National Office hold your arms up until you prevail.
To the members of SAICE, thank you for giving me the opportunity of serving as SAICE's President for 2013. It has been a great privilege and honour - much greater than I had imagined. I also wish to thank the many members of SAICE, organisations with which SAICE has links and the staff of National Office for receiving my wife Martie and I with so much kindness and courtesy. We have had much fun this year, and I, for one, have learnt an enormous amount about our great profession, its achievements and its people.
SAICE's annual awards function, held this year on 17 October at Emperors Palace near the OR Tambo International Airport, was a spectacular gala event celebrating the most outstanding engineering achievements of 2013.
Johannesburg Water, leading water and sanitation utility, has over the last few years embarked on a multibillion-rand capital investment programme to upgrade, expand and modernise each of its six wastewater treatment facilities. The first WWTW to undergo the expansion and upgrade was the Northern WWTW, which is the largest works with a capacity of 450 Mℓ/day, and is located outside of the northern suburbs of Johannesburg.
Although BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) systems have been developed all over the world, the MyCiTi system in the Cape Town CBD is being designed as a pilot project for the South African environment (the other being the Rea Vaya system in Johannesburg).
The City of Johannesburg has adopted an urban development policy which focuses on the need to create compact cities and limit urban sprawl in order to use urban infrastructure effectively. The primary measure to support this policy is the Rea Vaya Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system.
Golder Associates completed the overall design and construction of a brine pond for Anglo American Thermal Coal's New Denmark Colliery in the Mpumalanga Province. It serves as an alternative storage method for the mine's Reverse Osmosis (RO) reject stream which was previously stored in an underground compartment within the New Denmark Colliery mining area and on an ash dump.
There is an urgent need for a total rethink in the way we treat our planet. As an organisation which puts out numerous plant and material-intensive contracts, all unavoidably producing vast quantities of greenhouse gases, the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Transport is fully aware of its responsibility to reduce its carbon footprint.
An ambitious project by FibreCo Telecommunications to install approximately 1 000 km of fibre optic infrastructure from Johannesburg to Bloemfontein along the N1 freeway, and from Bloemfontein to East London along the N6, in 12 months, has proved successful thanks to correct planning and resourcing from the very early stages, as well as an inclusive problem-solving approach.
The Dr Chota Motala Road Interchange is located at the junction between the National Route N3 and Provincial Route R33 (Dr Chota Motala Road). The N3 is a key national route linking Durban with the 'hinterland', whilst the R33 provides access to the interior of KwaZulu-Natal and links the Pietermaritzburg CBD and southern suburbs with the northern suburbs.
The old Mahatma Gandhi Road Sewage Pump Station occupied a prime site within the Durban Point Development Corporation's (DPDC) upmarket development zone, bordering Mahatma Gandhi Road and Albert Terrace, and served the greater Durban catchment area including the CBD and Berea areas from the Umgeni River in the north to the Umbilo River in the south. Because of its prime position within the upmarket development zone it was decided to relocate it to a site adjacent to the north shaft of the recently commissioned Durban Harbour Tunnel, i.e. 250 m from its original position.
The Medupi Power Station is an Eskom project which, when complete, will bridge the gap between the current electricity supply and the estimated future demand. It is located near Lephalale in Limpopo, due to the abundant availability of coal in the area.
Hanger Street and Harvey Road in Bloemfontein's CBD were in desperate need of rehabilitation due to the severe extent of crocodile cracking, deformation, longitudinal and transverse cracking, degraded patches, potholes and undulations.
A stretch of approximately 1 km of road comprising Hoy, Griffith and Eric roads was rehabilitated and upgraded to cope with the increased volume of traffic that would occur as a result of the opening of the newly built underpass bridge linking Price Street and Hoy Street in Newclare, Johannesburg (see page 17). The works included:
A robust pavement structure
Introduction of a stormwater system
Significant improvements regarding pedestrian safety and traffic calming measures.
St Helen's Rock Pump Station is nine kilometres upstream from the Umzimkhulu River at Port Shepstone and provides up to 54 Mℓ per day of raw water to the Bhobhoyi Water Works which supplies the greater Port Shepstone area to as far as Margate.
The need to upgrade Bayhead Road between Langerberg Road and Pier 1 in Durban from a two-lane, two-way road to a four-lane, dual carriageway was necessary to accommodate the predicted traffic volume increase resulting from the planned conversion of Salisbury Island and Pier 1 into a container terminal. Further objectives were to relieve current traffic congestion, rehabilitate the existing road and provide for a truck staging area to streamline terminal operations.
With urban development taking place to the south of the N3 in Durban, pedestrians from the Tshelimnyama Township, instead of using available but longer pedestrian routes, began crossing the N3 at grade to access work opportunities in the Mahogany Ridge and Westmead industrial areas on the north side.