Issue 07, Dec 2020
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Issue 07, Dec 2020
The Hong Kong International Airport (“HKIA”) is an important aviation hub that connects with some 220 destinations around the world via approximately 120 airlines and supports 1,100 flights daily. HKIA is of enormous economic value for Hong Kong, underpinning the city’s financial well-being. In 2016, the Airport Authority Hong Kong (“AA”) responded enthusiastically to the government’s call for developing an “Aerotropolis” on Lantau Island based on the Airport City Strategy, which includes the Three-Runway System (“3RS”); SKYCITY, the largest commercial development in Hong Kong; further development of AsiaWorld-Expo and a premium logistics centre. As a leader in the application of new technologies, including the provision of coordinated and well-maintained services for major infrastructure projects requiring complex electrical and mechanical (E&M) designs, we support HKIA and AA in making Aerotropolis a reality.
The first project awarded to ATAL by HKIA involved Buildings and E&M works for the Automation of Arrival Bags Delivery System. The main goal of the project is to facilitate the efficient delivery of passenger luggages to the reclaim hall by improving the baggage-handling system. ATAL, in this project, is not only involved E&M installations for the 2.5km tunnel connecting existing Terminal 1 (“T1”) and Midfield Concourse (“MFC”), but also a considerable extent of steel platform work at T1 Baggage Hall. Among the challenges that we had to overcome involved construction of the two new ventilation buildings. Since the site featured a complex underground utility system but lacked adequate data on its layout, our team had to place extra resources on underground detection so that a comprehensive overview of the site could be established prior to piling work.
In the past years, baggage from Terminal 1 and connecting flights could only be delivered to T1 Baggage Hall via baggage trailers that required intensive manual labour. With this new system in place, baggage can now be transferred to T1 Baggage Hall through unloading points at MFC, which is a safer and more effective means since no physical operation is required.
Our expert team also participated in another signature project: Intermodal Transfer Terminal (“ITT”) Building and SkyPier. Constructed by AA, the five-storey ITT Building is an extension of the existing SkyPier. With a gross floor area of 22,000 m², its function is to transfer passengers between the Pearl River Delta and the airport directly for connecting flights – representing an additional option on top of the cross-boundary ferry service.
In this project, we provided comprehensive E&M installation services and an underground seawater pump house for supplying up to 500,000 m³ of seawater per day to the North Commercial District (NCD) of the airport to cool its air-conditioning systems. To enhance efficiency and accelerate construction works, the project team employed Building Information Modelling (“BIM”) and applied modular construction for part of the building services installation.
Ir CK Tam, Chief Executive for Infrastructure and Healthcare Engineering of ATAL Engineering Group, said, “Our high quality work with positive recognition from clients of numerous sophisticated mega projects is a proven track record of our expertise in providing comprehensive design-and-build E&M solutions. This makes us an entrusted partner in infrastructure development, securing new contacts from Airport Authority Hong Kong.”
Left: We provide E&M installations for the 2.5km tunnel connecting existing Terminal 1 and Midfield Concourse
Middle: Automation of Arrival Bags Delivery system marks ATAL’s footprint in HKIA
Right: ATAL infrastructure engineering team deploys BIM and modular construction for the ITT Building and SkyPier project
Upon completion of the Three-Runway System (“3RS”), passenger throughput at the Hong Kong International Airport (“HKIA”) is projected to rise to over 100 million by 2030, or up nearly 40% based on 2019 data. Ahead of 3RS and SKYCITY, a major integrated development adjacent to the airport has commenced construction. According to HKIA, SKYCITY along with other developments will help transform HKIA “from City Airport to Airport City”. ATAL is honoured to be part of this notable project of the Airport Authority Hong Kong (“AA”).
Situated north of the airport on approximately 25 hectares of land, the SKYCITY project will be completed by phases. In two of its phases, ATAL will provide fire services and plumbing and drainage installation for the Airport City. Other than retail complexes, entertainment facilities, restaurants, hotels and office towers, the Central Stage Atrium of this mixed-use development, a 32-metre high (approximately six-storey) and 61,000m³ sphere, is sure to become a major eye-catcher. Such height however poses a challenge for us to meet the prescriptive code by the Hong Kong Fire Services Department. Since conventional sprinklers can only cover three storeys, our fire containment engineers had to first customise a long-throw sprinkler (“LTS”) system. Drawing from solid experience in handling the LTS installation at Megabox, our team has devised an effective LTS solution for this important public space.
Still other challenges ahead, in terms of plumbing and drainage installation, include the construction of 53 sump pits and 19 terminal manholes while accommodating for the limited space available on the main and ground floors of the building. As a pioneer in the adoption of BIM in Hong Kong, our experienced in-house BIM modellers are now working closely with the main contractor in adopting the technology, covering inception to design, to rapidly illustrate all of the construction details and building life-cycle for the project.
Ir Victor Law, Executive Director of ATAL Engineering Group, said, “Even though COVID-19 has severely impacted the aviation industry, travelling for business or leisure will quickly resume once the pandemic is under control. Backed by our strong team of E&M professionals, ATAL is ready to capture the opportunities brought by 3RS and other major infrastructure projects, and will seek to reinforce our foothold in the market. In addition, we will spare no effort in applying innovative solutions to advance relevant projects, and also help reinforce Hong Kong’s position as Asia’s World City.”
Left: SKYCITY is set to be the most comprehensive retail and business hub in Greater Bay Area
Right: With its rich experience and knowledge in mega infrastructure projects, ATAL participates in transforming HKIA from City Airport to Airport City