SUPER Power for the “Autoroute Transmaghrébine”

The world’s largest road construction project currently underway is realized in North Africa. The 3,200km long motorway “Autoroute Transmaghrébine” is being built in the three states of Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, known as the Maghreb region (in Arabic: the West), as well as in Libya.

North Africa has developed into a veritable boom region in recent years. In order to maintain this growth, huge investments are currently being made in a gigantic road construction project. “Autoroute Transmaghrébine” is the name of the largest African road building project ever and, for the time being, the largest in the world. Once completed, the motorway is planned to connect the Maghreb states of Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Libya over a stretch of more than 3,200km. The construction work is already well on its way in Algeria, where three consortia were awarded the contracts for building 1,200 kilometres of the motorway. Numerous machines from the WIRTGEN GROUP are also being employed for this project, including 36 VÖGELE pavers, 30 HAMM rollers and WIRTGEN slipform pavers for building the concrete crash barriers.

Contractors from the world over involved

Three construction consortia are involved in the building of the 1,200km Algerian stretch of the “Autoroute Trans-maghrébine”. The eastern section running from the Algerian city of Bordj-Bou-Arreridj to the border with Tunisia is being built by the Japanese consortium COJAAL. A subsection around Algiers is executed by Algerian contractors ALTRO and COSIDER, while the rest of the section is handled by the Chinese consortium CITIC-CRCC. Many additional companies from all over the world are also involved in the construction of bridges, tunnels and drainage systems, etc. The capital investment for the job site in Algeria alone totals USD 11 billion.

Stringent requirements on quality

A high volume of traffic is anticipated on North Africa’s new “life line”. Therefore, the “Transmaghrébine” motorway is being constructed in Algeria with three lanes in each direction. What’s more, high requirements are made on pavement quality, especially in terms of resistance to deformation. To ensure that the high standards will be met, all SUPER pavers participating in the construction of the motorway are equipped with VÖGELE High Compaction Screeds.

The “Autoroute Transmaghrébine” over the entire 1,200km stretch is designed as follows: base course of cement-treated gravelly sand is placed in a thickness of 20cm, followed by a 14cm bituminous bound base, with the road finally being surfaced with a wearing course of asphaltic concrete (0/14) between 6 and 8cm thick.

Japanese consortium goes into action with 16 modern SUPER pavers

The ultimate in VÖGELE technology on the scene: The Chinese consortium builds its motorway section in full-road width of 12.5m.

For their section of the motorway, the Japanese contractors are using 12 modern VÖGELE SUPER 2100-2 pavers, each equipped with the AB 600-2 TP2 Extending Screed, as well as four SUPER 1900-2 pavers with AB 500-2 TP2 Extending Screeds. The “dash 2” generation machines certainly have their hands full on the 365km job site. The VÖGELE pavers are building the three lanes in each direction in a width of 6.25m, hot to hot. For grade and slope control with NIVELTRONIC Plus®, the Japanese teams use the VÖGELE RoadScan® sensor system.

Compaction with tandem and rubber-tyred HAMM rollers

Thanks to the ultra-modern VÖGELE machine technology, the paving teams from Japan are making fast progress, right on schedule, on their section of the motorway. A fleet of HAMM rollers is being used for final compaction of the individual layers. The fleet includes eight 12-ton HD 120 tandem rollers and eight 18-ton GRW 18 rubber-tyred rollers, capable of reliably producing the specified final density.

Paving in 12.5m width

The Chinese consortium, too, opted for SUPER 2100-2 pavers to build their section of the motorway. They moved to the job site with 13 machines. In contrast to the Japanese teams, the Chinese crews are paving in full-road width. They built up the screeds of their SUPER 2100-2 machines to a remarkable pave width of 12.5m. Each of these pavers is combined with a SB 250 Fixed-Width Screed in TP1 version for high compaction.The supplementary construction work along the motorway, such as hard shoulders, is being handled by three SUPER 1300-2 pavers from the VÖGELE compact equipment class. Unlike the Japanese, the Chinese paving teams are using NIVELTRONIC Plus®, the System for Automated Grade and Slope Control, in combination with the VÖGELE Big MultiPlex Ski. When working with this Ski, three sonic sensors attached to a beam scan an area of up to 13m. Just like the RoadScan® System, the Big MultiPlex Ski is highly flexible and perfectly suited for levelling out all kinds of irregularities in the base. This is a vital advantage on the job site in Algeria: even without tensioned wires, the specified grade and slope is achieved with high accuracy.

SUPER 2100-2 on the scene in major projects the world over

Paving “hot to hot“: A total of 25 tracked VÖGELE SUPER 2100-2 pavers participate in the building of the “Autoroute Transmaghrébine”.

There are good reasons why road building contractors rely on SUPER 2100-2 pavers from VÖGELE for so many major projects. The machine concept of this ultra-modern paver is designed so that it can handle even the largest road building jobs highly economically and with ease. With its maximum pave width of 13m, it is the ideal equipment for joint-free construction of motorways, airfields and large traffic areas. The powerful engine rated at 182kW and all material handling systems are designed for high performance. The SUPER 2100-2 is capable of paving thick layers reliably and quickly, even when difficult mixes are involved, such as cement-treated gravelly sand.

Easy to understand even for international paving teams: ErgoPlus®, the operating system based on self-explanatory symbols.

A large cooler assembly and excellent air routing guarantee perfect cooling of engine coolant, hydraulic oil and charge air. Full performance of the engine is guaranteed even when working at high ambient temperatures beyond 50 °C, a feature of high importance especially when operating in hot regions such as North Africa. A further highlight of the machine is ErgoPlus®, the VÖGELE operating concept for easy paver handling. In particular, the logical and self-explanatory symbols used for all displays are a great advantage on international job sites like those in the Maghreb.

Algerian contractors also involved in mega-project

The Algerian contractors moved to the job site around the capital city of Algiers with two SUPER 1800-2 and two SUPER 1800-1 pavers. All four VÖGELE machines are also equipped with High Compaction Screeds. In order to meet the tight deadline, the paving teams of the Algerian contractors are using their pavers in 14 hour shifts.

VÖGELE partner providing on-site service

On a project like this, not only the job site logistics need to be strictly organized, but also the supply of spares and the performance of maintenance services on all machines involved. The VÖGELE partner for Sales and After-Sales Services in Algeria, Demdistral S. p. A., handled this work for the VÖGELE pavers. Mr Ying Erqiang, Deputy Managing Director of the Chinese construction consortium, was enthusiastic about the global on-site support: “As far as the machine technology is concerned, WIRTGEN China provided us with their expert advice beforehand, and Demdistral is responsible for the After-Sales Services in Algeria. The guarantee that the machines will be supplied with parts on the job site and the reliability of the SUPER pavers are extremely important factors for us when it comes to meeting our contractual obligations. I can say that the After-Sales Service provided by VÖGELE in Algeria is outstanding.” Representatives of the Japanese and Algerian contractors, too, confirmed the highly professional service offered by VÖGELE’s Algerian partner.

SUPER 2100-2: Facts and Figures

  • Maximum pave width: 13m
  • Laydown rate: up to 1,100 tonnes/h
  • Maximum layer thickness: 30cm
  • Transport width: 2.55m
  • Pave speed: up to 25m/min.
  • Travel speed: up to 4.5km/h
  • DEUTZ engine rated at 182kW
  • ErgoPlus® operating concept
  • Mega-project “Autoroute Transmaghrébine”.

North Africa’s New High-Capacity Life Line

The world’s largest road construction project currently underway is realized in North Africa. The 3,200km long motorway “Autoroute Transmaghrébine” is being built in the three states of Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, known as the Maghreb region (in Arabic: the West), as well as in Libya. Construction of the longest section, the one running through Algeria and extending over 1,200km, began in March 2007 and is scheduled to be completed in 2009. The economic importance of this major project is tremendous. According to the National Road Agency, the road building project has created some 100,000 new jobs in Algeria alone, with the number of jobs created indirectly expected to reach two to three times that figure.

The motorway passes 55 cities with a total population of more than 50 million, 22 international airports, as well as the largest ports, railway stations, universities, hospitals and the most important industrial and tourist areas in the three Maghreb states. The “Autoroute Transmaghrébine” thus represents the most crucial economic nerve of the rising region.

The motorway with three lanes in each direction spans the country from East to West, passing over 190 bridges and through five tunnels. After completion, the travel time from the Tunisian-Libyan border to Morocco will be a mere ten hours.

The two countries of Libya and Mauritania, both also members of the Union of the Arab Maghreb (UAM), are likewise involved in the mammoth project. In the medium term, the “Autoroute Transmaghrébine” is planned to traverse the whole of North Africa. And thought is even being given to constructing a tunnel beneath the Straits of Gibraltar between Morocco and Spain to connect North Africa to Europe.

Sections of the “Autoroute Transmaghrébine” motorway by country:

Morocco: 1,014km
Algeria: 1,216km
Tunisia: 780km
Libya: 200km

Job Site Details
Construction of the Algerian section of the “Autoroute Transmaghrébine“ through the Maghreb region
Overall length of job site: 1,216km
Overall width of job site: 25m (3 lanes in each direction)

Paving Details
Layer thickness:
20cm base course
14cm binder course
6 to 8cm wearing course

Paving Material
Base course:
cement-treated gravelly sand (0/31)
Binder course:
bituminous bound base (0/25)
Wearing course:
asphaltic concrete (0/14)

25 SUPER 2100-2:
12 pavers with AB 600-2 TP2 Screed
13 pavers with the SB 250 TP1 Screed)
4 SUPER 1900-2 with AB 500-2 TP2 Screed
2 SUPER 1800-2 with AB 500-2 TP2 Screed
2 SUPER 1800-1 with AB 500-2 TP2 Screed
3 SUPER 1300-2 with AB 340 TV Screed

30 HAMM Rollers:
HD 120 Tandem Rollers
GRW 18 Rubber-tyred Rollers

WIRTGEN Slipform Pavers:
SP 150, SP 250 and SP 500