Aerobridge work underway at Gold Coast

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Preparation work for aerobridges at Gold Coast Airport in Queensland, Australia, has begun, with a low-impact piling system being used to prepare the ground for the new infrastructure

Construction firm Lendlease has begun the piling work on the airport’s A$200m (US$135.5m) Southern Terminal Expansion project, which will double the footprint of the existing terminal, delivering a new departure lounge, aerobridges, border control facilities and additional retail space.

A brand-new, 80 metric ton continuous flight auger (CFA) piling rig will construct foundations ahead of the eventual construction of aerobridges to connect aircraft to the new terminal.

“It’s exciting for us to see the first piles drilled and poured on the aircraft apron where we will be constructing the new terminal’s four aerobridges,” said Carl Bruhn, Gold Coast Airport property and infrastructure executive general manager.

“Aerobridges have been on the wishlist of many of our passengers and this is the first tangible step toward delivering those.”

He added, “It is essential that our current airport operations are not impacted by this construction activity, so we have had to work closely with our building contractor, Lendlease, to come up with solutions to minimize the impact wherever possible – both for passengers and local residents.”

The 30m (99ft) tall piling rig will excavate and place 2,500m3 (88,290ft3) of concrete into 224 piles over the duration of the project, with pile diameters ranging from 600mm to 1,050mm (24-41in). It is expected that four to eight piles will be installed each day.

To minimize disruption, piling reinforcement cages will be prefabricated offsite and installed with a 60ft (18m) crawler crane.

According to Lendlease Building Queensland general manager Brad Protheroe, the company had decided to use the continuous flight auger (CFA) piling system to minimize disruption to surrounding infrastructure.

Future construction milestones at Gold Coast Airport include completion of the ground floor slab in coming months, topping out of the building in mid-2020, and the opening of the terminal in mid-2021. When the Southern Terminal expansion is complete, work will begin on refurbishment of the existing terminal.

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Tara has worked for UKi Media & Events since 2013, initially as a freelancer. She has been a journalist for over a decade and has worked for a range of publications, including Personnel Today, Management Today and The Grocer.

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