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New AHRLAC Manufacturing Facility
South Africa
The New AHRLAC Manufacturing Facility and Offices located at Wonderboom Airport in Pretoria presents itself as a specialized and unique manufacturing facility in South Africa. The client, Aerospace Development Corporation (PTY) Ltd. in collaboration with the Paramount Group (PTY) Ltd., is responsible for the design, production and support of the versatile multi-purpose AHRLAC aircraft. The development in the northern region of Pretoria takes advantage of the accessibility and additional security provided by the Wonderboom Airport and its various transport routes namely, the National Road for local material deliveries and direct access to the airport runway. An intricate system of construction and materials ensures a state of the art manufacturing facility and comprises of highly secured storage areas, specialized machining/manufacturing facilities and aircraft assembly lines, fully equipped spray booth facility, administration offices, recreation facilities, aircraft hangars, exhibition spaces and aircraft taxi-ways. The building envelope consists of detailed structural elements, off-shutter concrete and insulated composite wall panels with excellent energy and structural performance with the benefit of low maintenance and fairly quick construction time. The Machining and Assembly facilities were orientated alongside each other and provides the opportunity for future expansion of both the manufacturing and assembly lines without interruption of existing activities. The factory components feature translucent louvered clerestories which allow for natural lighting and ventilation to assist with energy intensive usage of the facility. Mezzanine offices for the technical team overlook the and have direct access to the production facilities. The Administration building was orientated in a northerly direction to allow natural light into the offices and views to the aircraft runway and visitors reception. A private lounge is also located in the administration building which serves as a waiting area for private flight charters. Water storage tanks are provided for surface treatment facilities and auxiliary irrigation in winter. Natural and muted colours throughout, reclaimed timber used in key areas and a “traditional” recreational boma reference the African identity of the client. Recreational outdoor spaces with generous green areas i.e. sports field, boma, canteen garden with pool and natural veld grass, was introduced in contrast to the industrial environment to serve as a healthy retreat to staff in an otherwise fast paced and highly stressed work space. The clients foresight and aspiration with the determination of a project team that executed the development within strict time frames, culminates in what was coined “the most modern and advanced aircraft manufacturing facility in South Africa”.
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