Aalborg Zoo's restaurant Skovbakken

In 2009, MT Højgaard built a new restaurant for Aalborg Zoo in 2½ months. This type of construction normally takes six months.

Self-drying concrete

The project required that the construction shell dried faster than normally. So it was constructed from self-drying concrete of a type which is used for motorway bridges, where very strong concrete is required.

The special concrete also required special solutions when the walls were cast. In this case, concrete was used with around twice as much cement and only enough water for what the mixture itself needed. It meant on the other hand that the concrete was very solid and difficult to work with. Normally the concrete runs down through the formwork itself and in under the window openings, but not in this case. MT Højgaard thus constructed a system with channels which led the concrete through the openings and into place. After that both the channels and the concrete inside were removed, resulting in a perfect window opening.

The restaurant is on two floors, and the floor structures were made in steel and wood instead of concrete. This means there is less concrete that needs to dry, which also saves time.

Consideration for the animals and trees

During the work in Aalborg Zoo, it was a special challenge to ensure that the animals did not become unsettled because of noise from machines and equipment.

The zoo's preserved beech trees also needed special consideration, so a very tall crane that could operate above the treetops was used. In addition the trees along the approach road were protected to safeguard against collisions.

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