Indeco at the Riverbend
By Lindsay Gale22 October 2015
LPCiminelli made use of five Indeco breakers, two HP 8000, two HP 13001 and an HP 16000, during the demolition of the redundant Republic Steel plant in Buffalo to make way for the construction of what will be the largest solar panel production plant in the USA. While surface structures had already been removed, structures remaining below the 93,000 square metres (1 million square feet) surface of the new factory, and under the area designated for the utilities network, green spaces and parking lots, still had to be removed. The job involved the demolition of thick foundation slabs, supporting walls, and structures that were part steel, part cement and whose exact location and existence were uncertain. Using only excavators fitted with a bucket would clearly be insufficient; the job would require hydraulic breakers capable of demolishing structures even two or three meters below ground level.
In May 2015, after a year of work, close to 25,000 cubic metres (883,000 cubic feet) of concrete were demolished and hauled away. Added to that were around 3,000 tons of ferrous material (not only rebar but also plant components, small rail cars, rails, blast furnace slag and other waste). The breakers were heavily used, not only to demolish elements in reinforced concrete and structures where the new foundations were to be built, but also to excavate trenches for installation of the large utilities network. Over the course of six months the breakers operated intensively, demonstrating productivity and reliability despite difficult, if at times prohibitive, operating conditions. The job, moreover, involved removing very hard concrete, in some cases over 70 MPa (70 Kn/m² or 10.000 Psi) often cast with rebar with a size 36 or 34 diameter (12 and 10 US).