Pick n Pay Distribution Centre – Eastport

October 5, 2022
Pick n pay eastport aerial view
Pick n pay eastport warehouse construction aerial view

Giant application for Colorplus AZ100 – Pick n Pay Distribution Centre in Eastport

During 2022, Safal Steel has proudly been the sole supplier to the much-publicised Pick n Pay Eastport distribution centre (DC), a huge building situated in the Eastport Eastport Logistics Park, a development by Fortress REIT. The site is closeby to the OR Tambo International Airport and once completed the new DC will service Pick n Pay’s Inland region, which supplies stores across Gauteng, Limpopo, North West, Mpumalanga and Free State.

The Eastport distribution centre is projected to cost approximately R2.0 billion (land and construction costs), with Pick n Pay’s 60% share estimated at R1.2 billion. The development was done jointly with Fortress REIT.

This gigantic development, considered by some to house one of the largest single phase refrigerated spaces in Africa (at 46,000m²), measures in excess of 160 000 m2 in total including the dry goods and other spaces – an equivalent of 23 rugby fields.

The site development plan was developed by  Relog, the consulting and infrastructure consulting firm, taking into consideration the Pick n Pay business requirements and workflows.

Accordingly, 860MT (160 000 m2) of Safal Steel’s well-known ColorplusⓇ metal roofing material, has been used on the roof of the DC, and a further 200MT (40 000 m2) for the cladding.

The colour specified was Seaspray. Material was supplied as AZ100 and formed on site into the Novotexi 440® profile.


In the case of the cladding, two different versions of ColorplusⓇ were used for the 40 000 m2 of IBR profile supplied as formed by Macsteel: In a matt paint system in conjunction with the  standard gloss finish. The architect incorporated the two finishes to add to the bespoke aesthetic smooth finish (gloss) and a slight texture (Matt). For the cladding, the colours utilised were:Thunderstorm  in gloss and matt and Slate in gloss and matt. The matt version was specifically engineered for this project as a special colour.

Project architect, Claude Heyes of ICM Architecture,  says that the entire facility is split into 3 main sections: Drygoods, a typical ambient facility of just over 94,000m², perishables , a refrigerated chamber is just short of 46,000m². The returns-and-recoveries (R&R) warehouse is roughly 12,000m². In addition, a relatively small administrative  portion of roughly 1,500m² was built separate to the warehouse facilities. “There are also pilot office type admin facilities dotted all around the campus” he adds. This is indeed a demanding challenge for the metal roofing used.

The building has already achieved accolades in 2022, where one of Safals Steel’s roll-forming partners on the project, Macsteel, achieved a world record for the largest segment  of formed roof sheet manufactured on site, at 280m, using a unique technology called Sky Forming. This method is exclusive to the forming of the company’s Novotexi440® roof sheeting and is recognised as a world first by the Guinness World Records™

The technology involves housing a large shipping container off the ground to roof level, from which the roll forming was done. This meant that a world-record beating feat could be undertaken – the sky-forming of ColorplusⓇ as Novotexi440 in 280m lengths. To this end, Macsteel has broken a world record and has become the Guinness World Record™ title holder for the longest roof span covered by a single metal corrugated sheet – in the world.


Advanced roll-forming methods

According to Dave Reid, the  National Product Specialist: Novotexi 440 at Macsteel:

“Sky-Forming is unique to South Africa and Macsteel Novotexi 440 concealed fix roofing. This process of roll-forming roof sheeting in long lengths is becoming the preferred method in constructing mega-warehousing. It dramatically improves the quality of the end product and has advantages on the critical path planning of the project as a whole in allowing following trades to simultaneously operate without blocking the ground space around the site.”

“At roughly 700 meters long and 230 meters wide, the shear size of the facility has been a design challenge from conception. From finding an appropriate-shaped and sized piece of land, to the height of the structure, through to the details of fire escape routes across 230 meters of warehouse floorplate” explains Heyes.

The design has been carefully thought out from a risk-to-business angle, also.

“Mitigating risk from a business point of view meant dividing the drygoods and perishables warehouses with a fire wall. What became aptly known as ‘the-great-wall-of-PnP’ amongst the professional team, is a 200m long and 26m high tilt-up-concrete 2-hour fire wall. Concrete for the pre-cast walling panels was poured horizontally, on sacrificial beds, down at ground level and then lifted with cranes into position to form the central spine of the development” he adds.

Safal Steel’s pre-painted metal roofing coated steel, ColorplusⓇ, is derived from the technically advanced ZincalⓇ substrate,  made under licenced technology from BIEC International Inc. The process of manufacture is unique and efficient, during which rolled steel is continuously hot dipped into an alloy mixture. This consists of a 55% aluminium, 44.5% zinc and 1.5% silicon blend. This coating process gives rise to what is best known as AZ coated steel material, not to be mistaken for or confused with ‘Z’ or galvanised roofing material. The AZ material offers significant performance and also environmental sustainability benefits when compared with its heavier and faster- corroding galvanised alternative.

As the pre-painted version, ColorplusⓇ, is coated with a specially formulated paint system that is available in a standard range of 11 colours. Bespoke colours and paint system options are available on request, subject to terms and conditions.

The innovative pigments used in the paint have been carefully selected for colour retention in the long run and keep their a fresh appearance for many years. This technology also limits chalking. With an increasing load of wind-borne contaminants and dust in many environments, particle resistance is also a key feature we build into our paint system. This means that the advanced modified polyesters in the paint system resists dirt, ensuring your roof stays cleaner, retaining its colour for longer.


Cool roof

The selection of ColorplusⓇ in colour Seaspray is that this qualifies as a cool roof. This has significance in the climate control of the building, meaning less energy has to be expended on building HVAC, especially benefitting cold storage.

Seaspray is Safal Steel’s highest solar reflective index (SRI) colour with a rating of 78. This means that nearly 85% of incoming solar infrared heat gets reflected outwards, while the total solar reflectance is 65% – the best solution for a warehousing application where you need to keep the building cool.

Material details as specified:

  • ColorplusⓇ at TCT 0,5mm, G550 yield strength AZ100 having a total alloy coating thickness of 27 microns in pallette colour Seaspray was roll-formed on site into the Macsteel Novotexi 440Ⓡ concealed fix roofing profile.
  • ColorplusⓇ at  TCT 0,5mm, G550 yield strength and total AZ alloy coating thickness of 27 microns in pallette colour Seaspray gloss and matt and also Slate in gloss and matt was roll-formed into  IBR 0,47mm G550 AZ100 on site.

Profiles formed by Macsteel:

  • Roofing into Novotexi440 on site.
  • Wall cladding into standard IBR profile on site.

Project Team (on the DC building)

Client: Pick n Pay Group
Development manager: Fortress REIT
Architect: ICM Architecture
Project manager: Brown Barrow & Altini
Quantity surveyor: Quanticost
Structural & civil engineers: Sotiralis Consulting Engineers
Main contractor: WBHO
Structural steel erector: Cadcon Engineering
Roofing contractor: Tate & Nicholson/Southey Holdings
Roofing & cladding roll former: Macsteel
Roofing & cladding material supplier: Safal Steel
Photos by Macsteel, Fortress REIT and Pick n Pay

Customer warranty:

Safal Steel warrants its Zincal® and Colorplus® (colour coated steel) to have a service life (prior to perforation by weathering in the natural elements) from date of installation. Warranty periods are determined by Safal Steel and may vary according to project design and location. A Provisional Warranty may be applied for at project design stage; this warranty serves as a guideline as to the final warranty Safal Steel may issue on project completion. A Final Warranty application form may be submitted to Safal Steel by the roll former on project completion, requesting Safal Steel to issue a warranty for the specific material used on a specific project.

Look for the trademark. All Safal Steel prime material is branded on the backing coat – insist on Safal Steel material.

For any technical queries please contact Safal Steel and ask for the representative in your area.

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