AUGUST 23, 2022
Noida Supertech twin towers are all set to be demolished sharp at 2.30 pm on August 28. Modern engineering, advanced technology and the rule of science will be used to demolish the illegal high-rise construction.
3,500 kg of explosives have been rigged in for the historic project which was once a dream house for many and is now called the ‘tower of corruption’.
The police are taking all preventive measures, including sanitizing of routes and cordoning off the stretches, to prevent any loss of property or human lives due to shockwaves and the aftermath of the explosion. A dedicated map for planning has been put in place.
The deputy commissioner of police (DCP), Noida, Ganesh Saha, said, “All preventive measures are taken, including providing safe passage, cordoning off the impact area and standby emergency arrangements, for any untoward incident on August 28. We are prepared for the arrangement of diversion of roads. We are ready to tackle any emergency situation. There will be no traffic in the surrounding areas on D-Day.”
As India Today enters the Emerald Court society, preventive measures can be seen being carried out. A thick layer of green carpet covering the buildings to prevent dust particles, the Resident Welfare Association (RWA) putting out dos and don’ts guidelines for residents, trenches around the twin towers and large containers have been put up to prevent the horizontal spread of debris.
Preparations are in full swing. The residents have to evacuate the area before 7 am on August 28. Several residents have left and many are packing their valuable belongings, particularly electrical appliances, to prevent damage from the aftershocks of the explosion. Most residents who spoke to India Today are not afraid, but there is a bit of apprehension about the possible damage to their window glasses and the flow of massive dust into the houses. The residents of both Emerald Court and ATS society have been assured of compensation for structural damages due to the explosion by the demolition company, Edifice.
‘COMBINATION OF PHYSICS AND MATHEMATICS’
Partner in Edifice Engineering, Utkarsh Mehta, told India Today, “We have Rs 100 crore insurance for collateral damage due to the explosion on both societies — Emerald Court and ATS. Any minor damage, including breaking of glass, will be fixed immediately. Besides Rs 100 crore insurance, we have Rs 2.5 crore insurance for any damage to the gas pipeline beneath the property. “
Stating that the challenges of every demolition are different, Mehta said, “It is a combination of both, physics and mathematics.”
“All floors where the explosives have been rigged, including the columns, have been totally covered to ensure the building comes down in the way it is expected to. Jio textile clothes and trenches around a layer of loose mud will prevent aftershocks and vibration due to demolition. The study of vibration due to demolition has been done by a British company calculating the mass of the total structure and the amount of explosives being used,” said Utkarsh Mehta.
The entire structure will come down in 5 seconds and within 9 seconds two series of blasts will be heard as each of them will explode within the difference of 1millisecond. Demolition company Edifice has assured of no impact vibration or post-demolition aftermath.”
RESIDENTS PREPARE TO PREVENT DAMAGE
Indrajeet Kaur and Nandini discussed the measures they are taking to prevent glass frames, LED screens, chandeliers and valuable wall-hanging items kept inside their houses from damage. Indrajeet Kaur has got almost 100 metres of bubble sheet and cardboard to prevent aftershocks from the explosion to cover windows in the house and wrap up soft and fragile materials.
Indrajeet Kaur tells India Today that all residents are discussing the measures to be taken. “I will be leaving for my parents on 27th and will come back after demolition. We are not afraid, but yes, certain apprehensions are there about what we see when we come back.”
Another resident, Nandini’s younger sister and grandmother, have already started packing up glass wall paintings and are now seeking help to get down chandeliers hanging on the roof. Nandini says she is not afraid, but some anxiety and paranoia is there since it’s a big thing happening around.
Nandini said, “I am not apprehensive since all the precautionary measures are already being taken by the task force and the RWA. It is good news that illegal towers will get demolished and we will have a nice space.”
The former RWA president and a resident of Emerald Court society, Rajesh Rana, is amongst those who fought this battle in the Supreme Court. He said, “I will be evacuating on 27th and before that, we are packing our valuable items, including wall hangings and electric appliances in bubble sheets for protection from shockwaves.”
Rana says his RWA is working day and night to ensure a smooth transition of this operation and nearby societies have invited us to stay till this operation is finished.
THE DOS AND DON’TS
The RWA of Emerald Court has issued guidelines for the residents for D-Day. The RWA has advised residents to switch off all their electric connections before leaving home and everyone must vacate by the morning of August 28. It has advised residents to wrap up their appliances to prevent damage. Furthermore, residents have been asked to shift senior citizens or anyone with co-morbidities to safer places a day in advance.
HOW WILL THE EXPLOSION TAKE PLACE?
“The explosives are in the shape of a soft tube. They were inserted into the pillars and columns through a drilling machine. The last round of explosives was inserted on Monday,” said an official of Edifice, the company tasked with the demolition.
They will use implosion and gravity to achieve the task.
A team of six people, including the project engineer, will carry out the exercise of the explosion at 2.30 pm. Edifice Engineering along with South Africa’s Jet Demolition have done the drilling in the building.
3,500 kg explosives have been used. Trenches have been dug in and mud piled up around to reduce and minimize vibration due to explosion.
WHAT IS THE DEMOLITION METHOD?
Implosion is one of the many methods employed by demolition experts to rage a building, structure, or construction. It is employed when you want the structure to collapse inwards and onto itself. While it requires explosives and detonators, it’s not simply just setting the charge and punching the detonator triggering a blast.
It also relies on gravity for the building to collapse in a pre-determined pattern. For that to happen, engineers will have to tactfully remove the supporting structure of a building at a certain point that brings it down upon itself. To do so, explosives are drilled into key components of the building that support the structure at different levels from bottom to top.
The support structures include columns, beams, and slabs that hold the building in its entirety. The explosives are then detonated on the lower level and in a step-by-step manner, the charges go off from the bottom to the top. This sequential order of detonation results in the building collapsing on its own footprint or along a predetermined path.
MEASURES TAKEN TO AVOID COLLATERAL?
The 30 and 32-storied buildings, when they collapse, will lead to a huge pile of debris and shards of concrete flying outwards that could damage not just properties in the vicinity but also people in the area. To avoid such an issue at Supertech, four buildings in the vicinity will be covered in a layer of geotextile fabric. To avoid any injury to people from the debris and huge cloud of dust that will rise from the implosion, over 5,000 residents of the nearby Emerald Court and ATS Village societies will be evacuated. Nearly 1,200 vehicles are to be removed from the premises around the twin towers.
Meanwhile, the Noida-Greater Noida Expressway, which is close to the twin towers, will remain shut for vehicular movement from 2.15 pm to 2.45 pm on August 28.
WHY ARE SUPERTECH TOWERS BEING DEMOLISHED?
On August 31 last year, the top court ordered the demolition of the towers under construction within three months for violation of building norms in “collusion” with Noida officials, holding that illegal construction has to be dealt with strictly to ensure compliance with the rule of law. The Noida authorities had received a rap on its knuckles as the top court pointed out multiple incidents of collusion of its officials with Supertech Ltd in the Emerald Court project and violations of norms by the realty major in the construction of the twin towers.