After long design works based on computer models, selection of a proper mix of concrete, tests on type of wood strips and preparation of a hand-made formwork, the first of sixteen cup-shaped pillars is almost done. The last step is to finish a reinforcement of the top coat of the pillar and to cover it by the concrete.
For the last several days, high-skilled carpenters were joining small pieces of the wood strips manually to get a perfect form of the “umbrella’s” top coat. The form will enable to create a rough concrete surface of the pillar revealing the texture of the wooden pattern. A column of the pillar is covered by a tower scaffolding which holds the form of the “umbrellas” coat. “The carpenters give an utmost care to prepare the coat. They show a real passion for the work” – says Antoni Pomorski, Project Manager of the new Railway Station and Galeria Katowicka. “They are to make the wooden form sixteen times as each of the sixteen pillars will have a unique pattern”.
The new cup-shaped “umbrellas” architecture corresponds to the former ones, which were demolished over a one year ago due to works on the Neinver’s multifunctional complex. The subjected first pillar will be the most exposed and visible from the new Szewczyka Sq. and Młyńska St. Together with the second, west pillar, it will create a main entrance to the new Railway Station’s main hall. The entrance and the space between the two “umbrellas” will be filled in by a wall of glass sheets installed on thin rails. Each of the sixteen free-standing pillars will be eighteen meters high and will form a solid roof structure over the Station’s hall and Galeria Katowicka partially.
At the same time, works are being conducted on the entire area of the complex. Builders are finishing works on the entrances to the platforms of the Station as well as to the entrances to the tunnels on Dworcowa and Słowackiego streets. Construction crews also began to erect the “+2” level of the mall. Additionally, works on brick-walls and installations proceed in the underground floors of Galeria Katowicka. The “-3” storey, the deepest level of the building, already houses a fire fighting equipment including a pump station and two water reservoirs of approximately 900 cubic meters in total, which will deliver water for a sprinkler system.
About 1 000 people are involved in the construction work at present. They are supported by nine tower cranes.