In progress: Tappan Zee site gets own concrete batching plant

The collection of Tappan Zee Bridge equipment in the Hudson River just got another impressive piece: a floating concrete production factory.
The barge-mounted plant arrived this month and is one in a pair that will make some 300,000 cubic yards of concrete for the new crossing. The new plant is currently producing concrete for the span’s pile caps.
Fred Nolta, a California-based construction manager and concrete expert, said the portable ready mix concrete batch plant is likely a cost-saver for the project team. In addition, crews won’t have to worry about transporting the concrete from an land-based factory to the river.
“You have a limited amount of time to get it placed where it needs to be. If you have a portable batch plant on site, you minimize that time element,” he said. “You aren’t putting it on a truck and sending it down the road and subjecting it to traffic and other road hazards.”
The Tappan Zee’s concrete plant by the numbers:
30,000: the number of trucks that would be added to local roads over the next four years if the team had to haul in the concrete.
125 cubic yards: the average amount of concrete produced per hour at the plant
60 feet wide and 200 feet long: the size of each batch plant
Other facts about the floating factory:
• The crushed stone used for the concrete comes from a nearby quarry and is taken to the plant by barge.
• The automation concrete batch plant towers hold the concrete’s raw materials — stone, water and cement — that are mixed by an onboard operator.
• A sophisticated computer system ensures the mixture meets certain specifications. It’s then tested in a certified laboratory on board.
• The plant uses energy efficient engines and has an advanced air-quality system to reduce dust during production.
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