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January 7, 2019

Penetron Technology Meets Tbilisi Construction Site Challenge

The City Mall Saburtalo, Georgia’s largest shopping mall, relied on Penetron expertise to address the excessive groundwater and high sulfate levels at the construction site.

Crystalline solution: The City Mall Saburtalo, Georgia’s largest shopping mall, relied on Penetron expertise to address the excessive groundwater and high sulfate levels at the construction site.

When confronted with a difficult construction site, with high-water table and problematic sulfate levels, the City Mall Saburtalo project managers in Tbilisi, Georgia, called on Penetron Georgia for a solution. PENETRON ADMIX was used to ensure that the new retail center would open by December 2018.

IG Development carried out the expansion of the City Mall Saburtalo in Tbilisi, Georgia. Planned as the largest shopping destination in the city center, the projected retail center added approx. 45,000 m2 (495,000 square feet) of space, for a total of approximately 56,000 m2 (616,000 square feet) of retail accommodations. The four-floor project included three retail floors and an entire floor dedicated to offices and entertainment. The underground parking facility accommodates 1,500 vehicles.

“The planning of a project like City Mall Saburtalo is a complex assignment and the price of mistakes is huge,” says Mindia Sabanadze, the founder of IG Development. “That’s why we called on experts to help us develop a plan that corresponds to the latest international retail trends and construction standards.”
 

Providing Expertise on Concrete Durability

Penetron Georgia worked with BK Capital, a well-known contractor responsible for the City Mall Saburtalo, to propose an ideal solution for the below-grade concrete structures of the City Mall. 

“BK Capital came to us for our expertise on concrete durability,” adds Dzhimsher Shengelia, Director of Penetron Georgia. “The construction site was exposed to a considerable amount of groundwater and surprisingly high sulfate levels. The solution for the project was immediately clear.”

PENETRON ADMIX was specified for the expansive basement and underground parking garage structures to protect the concrete against the aggressive chemicals in the construction site's high-water table. Added during batching, PENETRON ADMIX was used to treat 4,000 m3 (5,240 cubic yards) to ensure a waterproof structure. 
 

Low Permeability and Self-Healing Required

With chemicals such as chlorides, sulfates and acids, water is an easy entry into the concrete. The resulting chemical reactions with the concrete matrix can lead to cracking, loss of mass and, eventually, failure. Because water and chemicals penetrate concrete mainly through capillary absorption and hydrostatic pressure, countering this problem demands a reliable waterproofing solution.

"To achieve concrete durability, especially in such critical environments, properties such as low permeability, low shrinkage and self-healing are required," adds Dzhimsher Shengelia. “Penetron crystalline waterproofing technology ensured an impermeable concrete structure for the City Mall Saburtalo and also provided a self-healing capability to protect the concrete for the complete life cycle of the structure.”

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