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Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Old Jul 7th 2012, 7:26 am
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Default Concrete & Construction in the UAE

got a question first; doing some home DIY.

Over there in Abu Dhabi / Dubai, what type of cement plaster coat are walls covered in?
What water : cement : aggregate ratio?
Do they use Ordinary Portland Cement or Portland Cement + Lime or Portland Lime Cement ?
What is the thickest single coat application? Is a bonding agent used prior to cement mix plastering?
Are the plaster coats misted with water for proper curing?

-----

Now some musing and curiosity....

As a kid growing up in AD, I liked to watch buildings going up. What I recall is that every single highrise was concrete , NOT a single instance of structural steel .

Now in the US famous buildings like the Empire State building and the WTC were structural steel . In the case of the WTC, it might have had a central concrete mid section, not sure. I think everyone here is familiar with the iconic pictures of steelworkers balancing on steel I-Beams high atop the NY city skyline. In the US I see many a 4 or 5 story commerical space built with structural steel .

So why is concrete the predominant if not only method of contruction in Abu Dhabi?
Is it purely a matter of cost?
Superior Fire protection and Corrosion resistance of concrete over structural steel? Yet many American highrises are of structural steel so it can't be that critical an issue, right?

Structural steel gives more floor space and longer distance between support beams (relative to concrete) so I would think SS is the way to go.
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Old Jul 7th 2012, 7:59 am
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Over there in Abu Dhabi / Dubai, what type of cement plaster coat are walls covered in? sand cement hand mixed by patans
What water : cement : aggregate ratio? whatever they fancy on the day, notionally 1/4 I guess but it ain't high tech. Top quality renders are available from reputable multi national suppliers but people don't want to pay
Do they use Ordinary Portland Cement or Portland Cement + Lime or Portland Lime Cement ? no lime
What is the thickest single coat application? Is a bonding agent used prior to cement mix plastering? as thick as they fancy they just throw and see what sticks( I can't remember the recommended but around 25mm ?) bonding agent h2o is very popular
Are the plaster coats misted with water for proper curing?

and concrete is the material of choice because it's so cheap here, we have a huge range of mountains to blow up and no environmentalists to stop us - add in the fact that we have 30m tonnes of cement capacity and a market of around 10 and you can guess what happens to the price
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Old Jul 7th 2012, 9:45 am
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Originally Posted by Sandboy View Post
sand cement hand mixed by patans
whatever they fancy on the day, notionally 1/4 I guess but it ain't high tech. Top quality renders are available from reputable multi national suppliers but people don't want to pay
no lime
as thick as they fancy they just throw and see what sticks( I can't remember the recommended but around 25mm ?) bonding agent h2o is very popular


and concrete is the material of choice because it's so cheap here, we have a huge range of mountains to blow up and no environmentalists to stop us - add in the fact that we have 30m tonnes of cement capacity and a market of around 10 and you can guess what happens to the price
Are the quality renderers Asian or Westerners ? What % of building projects use their service.

What % of highrises use prestressed concrete sections?

--

Off on a tangent but you got to see this video of Indian 'scaffold' workers.

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=31a_1337133098

So how many dirhams would you need to be paid to do that
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Old Jul 7th 2012, 9:51 am
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Originally Posted by Boomhauer View Post
Are the quality renderers Asian or Westerners ? What % of building projects use their service.

What % of highrises use prestressed concrete sections?

--

Off on a tangent but you got to see this video of Indian 'scaffold' workers.

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=31a_1337133098

So how many dirhams would you need to be paid to do that
Asians trained and monitored by Westerners

only a small percentage use the service, normally bigger jobs with a QS who knows what waste, consistency and efficiency mean, most sites operate under the misnomer that because their labour is cheap the job is cheap

not much high rise uses precast, easy enough to pump concrete up there, more precast used in smaller jobs, mainly floor beams
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Old Jul 7th 2012, 1:37 pm
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Originally Posted by Boomhauer View Post
. What I recall is that every single highrise was concrete , NOT a single instance of structural steel .
Bank Melli Building on Hamdan was always the only steel framed high rise in Abu Dhabi according to some bloke I know who's been here for eons
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Old Jul 7th 2012, 3:02 pm
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Originally Posted by saudiflares View Post
Bank Melli Building on Hamdan was always the only steel framed high rise in Abu Dhabi according to some bloke I know who's been here for eons
Is that the building with the glass lift? If so it used to be the Standard Chartered bank building.
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Old Jul 7th 2012, 3:26 pm
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Some pics of the Empire State building.




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Old Jul 8th 2012, 8:19 am
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Originally Posted by Boomhauer View Post
got a question first; doing some home DIY.

Over there in Abu Dhabi / Dubai, what type of cement plaster coat are walls covered in?
What water : cement : aggregate ratio? 1 to 3 or 4, water until its workable.
Do they use Ordinary Portland Cement or Portland Cement + Lime or Portland Lime Cement ? OPC no lime
What is the thickest single coat application? Is a bonding agent used prior to cement mix plastering? Should not go more than 20mm in one coat usually, bonding agent no but they do "dash" the walls first with a cement/water paste to give some adhension
Are the plaster coats misted with water for proper curing? Need to keep wetting the wall after plastering so it doesn't dry out too quickly, or damp hessian over the top of it.



Is it purely a matter of cost? Yes
Superior Fire protection and Corrosion resistance of concrete over structural steel? Yet many American highrises are of structural steel so it can't be that critical an issue, right? Its a cost issue, western labour costs are much higher so its more economic to use a faster less labour intensive process than in UAE. Material prices such as steel have a fairly uniform cost around the world

Structural steel gives more floor space and longer distance between support beams (relative to concrete) so I would think SS is the way to go. Not true in the slightest
Some musings on your thoughts
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Old Jul 8th 2012, 9:29 am
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Originally Posted by weasel decentral View Post
Some musings on your thoughts

Not true in the slightest
I was mostly basing that opinion on the word of websites like the below one.
http://www.buildings.com/tabid/3334/...1/Default.aspx

The rest of it is just observation, where it 'seemed' to me that Steel columns were less in cross section than Concrete columns . The floors in SS buildings also seemed thinner.

---

Really surprised that concrete is less labour intensive, woulda thought that one just needs to erect the pre cut Steel beams, whereas with concrete you got to build the rebar skeleton then pour.
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Old Jul 8th 2012, 9:35 am
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Originally Posted by Boomhauer View Post
I was mostly basing that opinion on the word of websites like the below one.
http://www.buildings.com/tabid/3334/...1/Default.aspx

The rest of it is just observation, where it 'seemed' to me that Steel columns were less in cross section than Concrete columns . The floors in SS buildings also seemed thinner.
The floors in steel framed buildings are usually concrete or perhaps composite flooring, anyhow it doesn't quite work as simply as you think and almost every building has its own design, construction and financial criteria. But regarding spans we are getting massive and efficient spans in post tensioned concrete and glulam timber sections. Way more efficient overall than steel.

---

Really surprised that concrete is less labour intensive, woulda thought that one just needs to erect the pre cut Steel beams, whereas with concrete you got to build the rebar skeleton then pour. I meant that steel was less labour intensive so its used in the west on this basis, concrete is more labour intensive but as the labour is cheap in the UAE its not big deal
Just to clarify what I meant
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Old Jul 8th 2012, 9:39 am
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Originally Posted by weasel decentral View Post
Just to clarify what I meant
I was curious about post tensioned construction in the UAE, in an earlier post I had called it "pre-stressed". What % of the buindings there use tensioning ?
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Old Jul 8th 2012, 9:43 am
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Give me a UK Gypsum Plasterer any day of the week! - It grieves me to watch what goes on here!
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Old Jul 8th 2012, 10:05 am
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Originally Posted by Boomhauer View Post
I was curious about post tensioned construction in the UAE, in an earlier post I had called it "pre-stressed". What % of the buindings there use tensioning ?
pre-stressed and post tensioned are two different things. Pre-stressed slabs or beams etc are delivered to site and lifted into place where as post tensioned is done on the site.
Not a high percentage of post tensioned concrete in UAE (I'd guess 25% of commercial buildings not residential) as the designers are not traditionally picking it as the default option, but it is gaining popularity. Dubai Mall had a lot of it for example, also all the floors in Landmark tower in Abu Dhabi.
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Old Jul 8th 2012, 10:49 am
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Originally Posted by jackthehat View Post
Give me a UK Gypsum Plasterer any day of the week! - It grieves me to watch what goes on here!
Everytime there is some need to drill into the walls here, that's precisely what I think to myself.

Then again, there are benefits to the concrete. Like not hearing your neighbours, or people in the next room over.
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Old Jul 8th 2012, 4:19 pm
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Default Re: Concrete & Construction in the UAE

Mix ratios for cement, by volume or weight?
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