Nearly a decade of major road construction in Greece is at an end, with a staggering 1,415 km of new roadway built at a cost of 8 billion euros. The results are transformational. Villages that were essentially isolated now are ready for strengthened economies thanks to new arterial roads. Larger thoroughfares are now safer and more efficient.
The undertaking includes many projects, with roads built north, south, east and west. Among the specific undertakings were Olympia Odos, Moreas Motorway, Nea Odos, Kentriki Odos and Aegean Motorway.
New roads now connect the three regions and the capital of the country with the most important gates of Greece to Europe: the ports of Patras and Igoumenitsa, which include archeological sites, tourist areas and agricultural production. Other construction work will hasten the development of the Peloponnese, Western Greece and Epirus.
Governmental agencies and many businesses devoted years to the infrastructure project.
Asphalt plants also put in hard work, with many working throughout the span of the projects. The plants stayed productive through their ease of relocation – and their ability to create quality mixes when back at work.
Mobility Is the Key
The size of the project could have been overwhelming on many fronts, including equipment utilisation. That led many asphalt manufacturers to choose Ammann mobile and transport-optimised asphalt-mixing plants.
There are more than 40 Ammann asphalt-mixing plants in Greece, and more than 20 of them are directly involved in the construction of the new carriageways. Of those 20 plants, 10 are mobile or semi-mobile Ammann plants.
ABM EasyBatch plants are categorised as “mobile.” They can go from production at one location, to production at another, in two or three days.
ABT SpeedyBatch plants are “transport-optimised,” meaning they can be disassembled and reassembled within a few days – but not quite as quickly as ABM EasyBatch. But the transport-optimised plants have an advantage because they offer a bit more production capacity than their mobile counterparts.
Both types of plants moved often. Elissavet Pantzartzidou, a board member of Pyramis ATE, estimated two Ammann plants had been moved 15 times to keep pace with the production needs during the nearly decade of construction.
“The greatest challenge is the sheer size of the project,” said Pantzartzidou, whose company utilised an Ammann ABT 280 SpeedyBatch and ABM 90 EasyBatch asphalt-mixing plants.
“Our mobile Ammann plants allow us to move quickly from one location to another and to meet all the difficult time-related and quality-related requirements.”
What all Ammann mobile and transport-optimised plants have in common is ease of relocation to minimise downtime.
“Disassembling all the parts of a SpeedyBatch plant takes only two days and then another two days to install it again,” said Evangelos Karakitsos, operator with Ifaistos Asfaltika S.A. “It doesn’t take anything special to install this plant since it features support feet that make the installation very easy as long as there is a flat, even surface for a strong grip.”
The electronics are easy to assemble because they consist of plug-in components that are clearly marked so it is all but impossible to mismatch them, he said.
Well-compacted ground is the only requirement for installation, said Konstantakos Lampros, who operates an ABT SpeedyBatch plant for Pyramis ATE. “Nothing else is necessary,” he said. “The electrical assembly is easy because the connections are pre-integrated and that is all that is needed.”
The quick relocation ensured plants were near the paving action. Their productivity also helped keep the project on track – essential not only to those involved in the road building, but to all of Greece.
Such projects will boost areas with difficult access by connecting them to large urban centers. The new roads run horizontally and vertically through the country and clearly improve the speed and quality of transport. They offer economic benefits and high levels of safety to drivers and vehicles.
Source: Ammann Group