Preparing for the Asian Games

Like every other city that hosts a major sporting event such as an Olympics or a World Cup, the Chinese city of Hangzhou is “putting its best foot forward” in preparation for the next Asian Games – with top-of-the-range TENSA®POLYFLEX®Advanced expansion joints installed in the new Hangyong expressway leading to the main Games venue.

When the 2022 Asian Games (the 19th) kick off in Hangzhou next year, it will be a year later than scheduled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Like the Olympic Games, the Asian Games are held every four years, and feature a wide range of events such as athletics, gymnastics and swimming, but participation is limited to competitors from Asian countries.

In preparation for the Games, the host city, Hangzhou, has invested strongly in the infrastructure required – not only to ensure that the event is successful, but also to make the most out of the opportunity it has to present itself on the world stage. An important infrastructure project has been the reconstruction of the Hangyong Expressway, now as a two-level structure, to provide efficient and comfortable road access to the main Games venue from the city and its main airport. The expressway has been built with a focus on "smartness, speed, and safety” – happily, all traits that are characteristic of the TENSA®POLYFLEX®Advanced expansion joint which was selected for use in the construction of the expressway’s numerous viaduct and bridge structures.

In total, approximately 1,700 m of this plug-type expansion joint have now been installed in the project’s structures, designed to accommodate superstructure movements of up to 160 mm. The installation has been expertly carried out by specialists from mageba’s nearby Shanghai subsidiary. Most of the numerous expansion joints were installed in the “standard” way, as shown in the photographs. Others, however, were installed using mageba’s recent pre-casting innovation, as perfected in a major expressway project in Shanghai, for even greater speed and less dependence on suitable weather conditions.

These impressive new highway structures will be sure to make an excellent first impression of Hangzhou City on all those visiting for the Asian Games next year – and we expect they won’t even be aware of the expansion joints that reliably fulfil their purpose in such a smooth, quiet manner … and we are perfectly happy about that. 

Engineer: Hangzhou Institute of Communications Planning Design & Research Co., Ltd
Contractor: Zhejiang Communications Construction Group Co., Ltd, CCCC 2nd Navigational Bureau, MBEC 2nd Engineering Co., Ltd
Owner: Hangzhou Transportation Development Guarantee Center

The new Hangyong Expressway in Hangzhou, eastern China, has been constructed to provide convenient and comfortable road access to the main venue of the 19th Asian Games

Preparation of the required blockout for the installation of a TENSA®POLYFLEX®Advanced expansion joint on Hangzhou’s new Hangyong Expressway

Pouring of first layer of the polyurethane (PU) expansion joint material following completion of preparation of the recess and the bridge movement gap

Placing of reinforcing bars to span across the movement gap, increasing the expansion joint’s strength and stability for large movements of up to 160 mm

Pouring of second layer of the polyurethane (PU) expansion joint material and spreading it carefully to provide a perfectly smooth driving surface

Measuring the hardness of one of the new TENSA®POLYFLEX® Advanced expansion joints following completion of installation

Conducting a friction performance test on one of the fully installed TENSA®POLYFLEX®Advanced expansion joints

Inspection of installed expansion joints by the client’s representatives prior to opening the new expressway to traffic

Thanks to the perfectly smooth driving surface provided by the new expansion joints, driving comfort is maximised and noise is minimised

The new TENSA®POLYFLEX® Advanced expansion joints have been installed at numerous locations throughout the impressive new system of highway infrastructure

When the sun goes down on the 19th Asian Games next year, it is safe to assume that the visitors to Hangzhou will remember the impressive highway structures that brought them to the Games venues, but that they will hardly have noticed the quiet, smooth expansion joints – and that is the way it should be