Alimak giants tower over HK

Three Alimak dual hoists are being used for the transportation of personnel and materials during the construction of what will, on completion, be Hong Kong's tallest building, and the fourth highest building in the world.

NEWS, PMV

Three Alimak dual hoists are being used for the transportation of personnel and materials during the construction of what will, on completion, be Hong Kong's tallest building, and the fourth highest building in the world.

The International Commerce Centre (ICC) is being built in West Kowloon, Hong Kong, and at its full height will have 118 storeys and stand at 484m. The completion date is scheduled for 2010.

Alimak has supplied a three-unit hoist configuration, with each unit having a double car. The installation includes two of the largest cars the company has ever installed, both measuring 2x5m.

The hoists have been installed on a common tower on the front of the ICC building, which is part of the Union Square multi-tower complex. Each of the three units operates on its own mast attached to the common tower.

ICC is being built above the MTR Kowloon Station, and a station for the Airport Express railway link. The development is owned and jointly developed by Hong Kong's metro operator, MTR Corporation Ltd, and the country's largest property developer, Sun Hung Kai Properties (SHKP).

The tower was designed by the American architectural firm Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates (KPF) in association with Wong and Ouyang (HK) Ltd, and is being built by Sanfield Building Contractors Ltd, a member of SHKP.

Sanfield's project director Ricky F W Lam is a veteran of Hong Kong's high-rise construction scene. His first major project was the Sun Hung Kai Centre in 1980, which at the time was one of the highest buildings in Hong Kong.

"We used Alimak hoists on that project, and they have been installed on many other projects I have worked on in the years since then," said Lam.

"When we were planning the International Commerce Centre tower, I specified the use of Alimak. I wanted to minimise the use of cranes, because with a project of this size and configuration, the large-scale use of hoists in conjunction with climbing cranes can be very effective.

"We worked very closely with Alimak and Crossfield in drawing up the specifications for the hoists. An important factor was that I wanted to use a hoist for lifting the glass cladding panels up the building as we progressed, thereby reducing our hook time with the cranes. These panels are almost 5m in height, and so we had to have two of the cars built to a dimension of 2x5m.

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