MEDIA RELEASE AMMANN GROUP
PROJECT TO PROVIDE BENEFITS LONG AFTER EXPO ENDS
MILAN, Italy – Expo Milano 2015 is having a significant impact on the region, with more than 20 million visitors expected between May and October. Such an influx requires infrastructure improvements, which not only are accommodating Expo crowds but also will benefit Milan area residents for years to come.
One key project is the Milan Motorway, which will see 67 kilometres of new construction including Outer Bypass Road and other sections of connecting roadway. The improvements will relieve congestion and substantially reduce fuel burn and emissions.
“Expo 2105 is the main reason for the project,” said Angelo Ricchetti, director of Turchi Cesare S.r.l., which was responsible for asphalt production of the 67 kilometres of road. “It’s a new ring road around Milan with connection to the existing highways A1 and A4, as well as the new A35.”
Design work began in 2003, with ongoing modifications and an environmental impact study following. Tangenziale Esterna S.p.A.. is the general contractor on the motorway project.
The construction phase began in 2012 and won’t be finalized until later this summer, but what has been completed is already providing relief to residents and visitors to the expo, which will showcase the best solutions for adequate and healthy food supplies.
IMPROVING LIFE IN MILAN
The long-term benefits that result from the construction will be significant. The revamped motorway is expected to reduce congestion and increase speeds by 34 per cent, Ricchetti said. Transportation officials estimate the motorway previously handled 170,000 vehicles per day. The bypass is expected to reduce that volume by 70,000 vehicles.
Officials have estimated the congestion relief will reduce fuel consumption by 15 million litres per year, with an estimated fuel cost savings of €150 million annually.
“Pollution and gas emissions will drop an estimated 141,000 tonnes per year,” Ricchetti said.
The benefits are substantial – “Of course we are proud of this work!” Ricchetti said – but the demands were significant. The manufacturing of asphalt for 67 kilometres of roads with multiple lifts had to be achieved in only 18 months. “That included a base course, a binder, a porous layer and the wearing surface,” Ricchetti said.
It is one of the more ambitious projects that Turchi Cesare, based in Modena, has tackled in its 50 years in business. For 18 months about 50 of the company’s 120 employees were dedicated to the motorway. Its portion of the project had a cost of about €40 million.
For asphalt production, Turchi Cesare turned to the Amman SpeedyBatch 280. The SpeedyBatch is a container-optimised plant, meaning it is configured in accordance with container dimensions. The plant features steel platforms without concrete foundations and electrical and pneumatic connections integrated into the plant concept, enabling quick and cost-effective installation at the site.
The mobility is appreciated, but this job required consistent daily production. The SpeedyBatch provided it, at a maximum of 320 tonnes per hour and some days delivered 5,500 tonnes.
The total required plant production is estimated at 850,000 tonnes. Over one four-month stretch the Ammann SpeedyBatch manufactured 300,000 tonnes, often as a result of 24-hour shifts. Time pressures were always looming, with no margin for error in production.
“The deadlines were the most difficult part of the project,” Ricchetti said. “Many pieces had to come together: adequate work planning, department organisation, logistics, aggregate and bitumen supplies and worker shifts. Even breaks, rest and meals had to be planned.”
The plant had to do its part as well. Various mix types were required, a process made efficient through the Ammann as1 control system. “It’s simple to operate and highly reliable and user friendly,” Ricchetti said, adding that the system made it easy to adjust recipes.
The plant featured an RAH50 dryer to enable the utilisation of a large amount of recycled asphalt. The percentage of RAP required was 30 per cent, an amount the RAH50 had no trouble meeting. In addition, the aggregates and the mix were CE certified as they provided the highest quality with a low environmental impact.
Plant uptime also was essential. “After-sales support has been fundamental to reaching the goals,” Ricchetti said. “Service work has been scheduled and performed around production needs. The plant had to work for many hours and the time for maintenance was very limited. Sometimes we had to do the work on nights and weekends.” Regardless of the hour or the day of the week, Ammann and its technicians were always available, he said.
Efficiencies, particularly with RAP, helped Turchi Cesare control costs on the enormous project.
“The RAH50 dryer and mixer are allowing us to save money by recycling RAP,” Ricchetti said. “The best cost savings resulted from using a huge amount of RAP with compliance of recipe specifications.”
A high quality product resulted as well. During the entire project not a single claim arose.
Ultimately, all were happy with the asphalt. “There were very restrictive specifications and control by the quality inspector. That meant every single phase of the project was monitored. We were able to prevent claims and reach a high performance level without wasting time or money,” Ricchetti said.
Ammann is a sixth-generation, family-owned business that produces asphalt and concrete mixing plants, compactors and asphalt pavers at nine production sites in Europe, China, India and Brazil. Its core expertise is in road building and transportation infrastructure. Visit https://www.ammann.com/for more information.