Retractable pitch tested at Spurs stadium site

Spurs have successfully tested their retractable grass pitch as Mace work flat out to finish the club’s new stadium in time for the start of the new season.

The club has released images of the hi-tech pitch trays being moved out from underneath the South Stand.

The system has been designed, engineered, built and installed by Sheffield-based specialist SCX.

The pitch will be made up of three sections in total with the east section set to be tested in the near future.

Once complete all three sections will slide out simultaneously in approximately 25 minutes, with the west and east sections moving laterally to connect with the centre section and create seamless joins in the grass playing surface.

The hydraulic sides were also tested over the weekend – weighing 480 tonnes these sides lift once the three pitch trays have connected in order to raise the touchlines so they are at the same level as the grass playing surface.

Nick Cooper Head of Moving Structures said: “This represented the first time we’ve moved the pitch trays out.

“To do that, we had to fix up the generators, the electrics, SCX brought down their design and mechanical engineers just in case anything happened and what I can report is that it worked first time exactly how we wanted it to work, which is great news.

“The hydraulic sides are enormous, a 120-metre truss that runs the full length of the pitch and it all moves up and raises together. In one side, there are eight moving bridges all operating concurrently.

“That is a tremendous achievement by the electrical engineers. The sides weigh 480 tonnes, so we’re lifting 480 tonnes up in a matter of minutes – and it all works beautifully.”

Danny Pickard, Senior Project Manager, SCX “It was all about the first movement from the garage area where we’ve assembled the pitch trays to bring them out into the bowl to see how smoothly it ran, to see how well the edges of the trays lined up and to also interface with the hydraulic pitch sides, so a test of what we’d call the big picture, how all the big pieces fit together.

“It took a lot of work by a lot of people to get it there, lots of late nights but the weekend went brilliantly.

“We’d done a lot of testing beforehand of all the smaller pieces but the size and scale of the overall project…there is a lot of weight, mechanisms, manufacturing tolerances and installation tolerances, so to have tested all that and for it all to have fitted together first time was a great achievement for everyone who has put it together.

“It was a massive milestone completed for us.”

[Ref: constructionenquirer.com]

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