Attractive arcades

New eye-catcher in Pécs: a market hall with immaculate surfaces

Data & Facts

  • Project 

    Pécs market hall, Hungary

  • Contractor 

    B. Build & Trade Kft., Budapest, Hungary
    Shell construction: Tura Group

  • MEVA systems 

    Mammut 350 wall formwork
    MEP shoring tower
    Triplex heavy-duty brace

  • Engineering and support 

    MEVA Zsalurendszerek Zrt., Budapest, Hungary

A newly built market hall in the Hungarian city of Pécs

Exceptional in more ways than one: apart from impressing with bright architecture and colossal arches, it was constructed with eco-efficient concrete. MEVA also contributed to the successful site operations.

In summer, Hungary's fifth-largest city, Pécs, witnessed the completion of the structural works for a new market hall, a blend of modern and classical architecture, lightweight and linear, featuring long sequences of arches. The city authorities had mandated B. Build & Trade Kft. to erect the monolithic reinforced-concrete structure. The contractor opted
to use the Mammut 350 wall formwork system, the MEP shoring tower and Triplex heavy-duty braces, supplied by MEVA Hungary.

Arches big and small
The attractive newbuild occupying a 1,750 m² footprint will soon replace the existing old market hall. Even from afar, the market hall is a veritable eye-catcher. It comprises two series of 11 smaller arches, each with a clear width of 8.10 m, on the longitudinal fronts. Standing perpendicular to these are two external and 12 internal arches which are
even bigger, with a clear span of 13.60 m, and lend the interior an airy feel. While the curved openings give the impression of having simply been cut out of the expansive wall surfaces, their creation demanded in-depth design and construction expertise.

Two semi-circular steel-mesh brackets, 13.60 m and 8.10 m wide respectively and custom designed by the Tura Group, were placed exactly between the top edges of the precast-concrete piers and supported by MEVA MEP shoring towers at a height of 4 m. Large, high-performance Mammut 350 formwork panels were then mounted on and over the steel-mesh brackets. To keep construction times short, the contractor deployed maximum- sized formwork assemblies for swift movement by crane between work locations.

High loads and wind pressure
The modular MEP shoring tower vouched for safety and stability, as it was easily able to carry the weight of the steel-mesh brackets, formwork and concreted walls. The versatility offered by the differently sized MEP frames and flexible vertical adjustment enabled the B. Build team to precision-align the various assemblies in accordance with the building  geometry. As the system consists of only a few basic components, it is quick and easy to put together, without creating any dense “forests” of props. The workers thus enjoyed
ample room to manoeuvre. The 13 m tall formwork assemblies were effortlessly stabilised against wind pressure and other loads by the modular Triplex braces.

Aesthetic concrete finish
One particular feature of the Mammut 350 system turned out to be a real blessing on this project: the symmetrical tie hole and joint pattern of the formwork panels, whether placed horizontally or vertically, allowed the concrete surfaces to be designed in line with aesthetic criteria. Throughout the construction period, the alkus all-plastic facings, fitted as standard, guaranteed the creation of homogeneous architectural concrete finishes to all the walls. Moreover, the simplicity of cleaning and patching the alkus facings proved a real time-saver on site.

The arcade building’s large concrete surfaces, including two of the big internal arches, were cast with expansion joints in order to prevent stress cracking due to the varying expansion properties of the materials in the filigree assembly. As a further precaution, the deployed concrete incorporated a special cement supplied by Lafarge as a binder,
which reduces the proneness to cracking of structural concrete.

To speed up site operations and thereby cut construction costs, the scheme in southern Hungary made provision for early stripping. In addition, the cement from the Lafarge factory in Királyegyháza is more eco-efficient than other binders as it is produced by a process involving up to 40% lower carbon dioxide emissions due to a reduced proportion of clinker. This, together with the use of the durable, resource-efficient and wood-free alkus facings on the Pécs market hall project, is fully in keeping with Hungary’s “Build Greener” campaign.