A concrete 3D printed bus stop, said to be the first of its kind in the Middle East, has been installed in Ajman by global sustainable infrastructure solutions provider, Acciona.
A statement from the Spanish company said the bus stop, which weighs almost 3t and is 4.5m long, 2m wide and 2.3m high, consists of three printed pieces and took less than 10 hours to be printed.
The project was executed for the Transport Authority of the Government of Ajman and was presented at a ceremony held recently, which was attended by His Highness Sheikh Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi, Ruler of Ajman and UAE Supreme Council Member, along with other high officials of the emirate, along with senior members of Acciona staff.
Luis Clemente, COO, Acciona 3D Concrete Printing Business, said: “We are glad that the Transport Authority of the Government of Ajman has chosen us to carry out this project, as it serves as a demonstration of their commitment to innovation. This project allows us to showcase another way of applying 3D concrete printing technology: making iconic, innovative and sustainable urban street fittings. It is also the first to be carried out using the Powder Bed technology in the Middle East.
“The benefits of manufacturing this type of urban furniture with our 3D concrete printing technology, as opposed to the conventional construction methods, are the reduction of waste – no moulds or forms are used whatsoever – the lessening of CO2 emissions and the possibility of having total freedom over the structural design. In this specific case, the bus stop’s design allows for the placement of solar panels on the roof.”
Jesús Sancho, MD, Acciona Middle East, said: “We are delighted and proud to see that the leaders and visionaries of the government of Ajman share the same passion for innovation and cutting-edge technology, while sharing the same interest in deploying sustainable solutions as Acciona does. We deeply appreciate the trust placed by the top management of the Transport Authority of the government of Ajman since the first time that they visited our facilities and believed in this project.”
Acciona owns and operates the largest fully functional concrete 3D printer in the world with the Powder Bed technology, which is a suitable option for generating pieces with complex shapes that require structural resistance. It works with concrete as the raw material, making it an ideal solution for the use in architecture, urban planning and building. The 6mx3mx2m printer allows greater efficiency and automation of construction processes, making possible a freedom of architectural and urban design unknown until now, and the production of exact replicas of any sculpture to enhance cultural and historical heritage.
The Acciona 3D printing hub is located in Dubai’s Ras Al Khor industrial area, a location the company says it chose to support the “Dubai 3D Printing Strategy” and the UAE’s “commitment to deploy the technology in all areas of the economy and, specifically, in the construction sector.”