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PHOTOVOTAIC SOLAR ROOFTOP SYSTEMS FOR GOVERNMENT WAREHOUSE

We were appointed by the Department of Public Works as principal agent for a large upgrade to the old South African Police Service (SAPS) storage facilities in Cape Town.

Our structures division has extensive experience working on public sector and government building projects. This is in addition to award-winning residential, commercial, retail and industrial developments.

The SAPS project harnessed our skills and capabilities in sustainable and business greening, especially regarding photovoltaic rooftop solar systems.

A total of 600 m² of solar panels were installed on top of the new roof structures that were designed by JG Afrika as part of the main works associated with the upgrade.

The existing structures with their internal valleys and elevated ridges were removed, and the roofing reshaped to form an apex.

It was an extensive undertaking that involved large quantities of building materials, including structural steel and IBR sheeting. On its own, the main warehouse measured 188 m x 60 m.

The professional team also had to give due consideration to strict regulations, as well as the Occupational Health & Safety Act. This is in addition to directly handling the large quantities of deteriorating asbestos roofing materials.

Scope of work also entailed the complete replacement of the existing fire-reticulation and smoke-detection systems in the buildings.

One of the challenges was managing multiple specialist consulting and contracting activities and coordinating them in an operational area.

This required extensive upfront planning and preparation to minimise disruption in the complex, while ensuring a safe and productive construction site.

All SAPS staff had to be relocated and the warehouse contents removed before activities could commence at the various construction faces.

At the same time, the civil contractors started extending the external paved areas to improve vehicular access and storage capacity. They also built a new 600 m boundary wall along the perimeter of the complex as a security upgrade.