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News Release

Potain’s fast line speeds help erect Argentina’s tallest building


The Alvear Tower in downtown Buenos Aires will become the tallest building in Argentina when completed later this year. Two Potain MC 205 B tower cranes and their quick line speed have been crucial to the project – in fact, they were specifically chosen to help build the 235 m (771 ft) tower. 

Gustavo Costa, owner and president of Tecno Dealer, the Buenos Aires-based Potain distributor and rental company that sold the two cranes for the project, said quick line speed is a key factor in making sure a super tall building like Alvear Tower is completed on time and on budget.

“Operating at greater heights by the day, the line speeds of the Potain cranes are helping the contractor guarantee the project stays on schedule,” he said. “The cranes have been working up to 12 hours a day, installing rebar, formwork and machinery to assist in concrete pouring. Potain’s smooth and precise controls are contributing to the project’s success.”

The Potain MC 205 B cranes can achieve line speeds approaching 117 m (384 ft) per minute. The cranes can be used in either two-fall or four-fall reeving and are ideal for high-rise buildings that exceed 200 m (656 ft) in height. With 550 m (1,804 ft) of rope capacity on the winch’s drum, the crane was the perfect choice for Alvear Tower.

“We help our clients pick the best equipment for their project by studying all aspects that go into the construction,” Gustavo Costa said. “Since we’re dealing with such extreme heights, we recommended Potain MC 205 Bs in two different configurations to accommodate the project’s particular demands, which far exceed those of shorter buildings.”

Commissioned by CRIBA, a leading contractor also based in Argentina’s capital, the Alvear Tower, a mixed-use development erected next to the shores of the River Plate, will be the second highest building in South America – its instant notoriety demands the best construction equipment available. 

At the job site, in the heart of the upscale waterfront neighborhood of Puerto Madero, the two 10 t (11 USt) capacity MC 205 Bs are positioned to operate simultaneously with their 60 m (197 ft) long jibs flying above one another. One crane is installed outside the building using 2 m (7 ft) mast sections, the chosen length to optimize its rise to a final height of 260 m (853 ft). The second crane is configured for floor climbing inside the building, moving up as each floor is built.

Industry-leading features
Another important aspect considered for this project was the complete system of indicators in the Potain MC 205 B cabin, said Didier Bigay, Manitowoc’s tower crane regional sales manager for South America.

“From the seat, the operator has control of the radio, load size, hook height, and access to wind speed and other data to fully control the crane operation,” he explained.

The cranes were also selected for their reputation for high performance. Gustavo Costa from Tecno Dealer also commented on the advantages of locally based crane support for its customers in Argentina and beyond.

“Potain cranes never let us down, since they come with Manitowoc Crane Care support that offers high-quality service, spare parts supply and technical training,” he said. “This major development will create a world-class commercial and residential complex. The build must proceed with the highest attention to detail, and we know we can count on Potain. There’s no room for error.”

After construction is completed, the MC 205 B installed outside the building will help with disassembling the floor-climbing tower crane. Due to their final heights, it’s the most practical choice as opposed to using a mobile crane from the ground, according to Tecno Dealer. For the dismantling of the second crane, the operation is somewhat less demanding: the crane’s mast is lowered to the point where a smaller mobile crane on the ground can complete disassembly.

CRIBA estimates the cost of the 174-unit, 70,000 m2 (753,500 ft2) building will reach US $130 million. Depending on the floor and unit size, the sale price of residences will range from $6,000 to $10,000 per square meter ($550 to $930 per square foot). With completion scheduled for December 2015, these figures would make Alvear Tower the most expensive new building in Buenos Aires.

Founded in 1952 by two young engineers, CRIBA specializes in large-scale public and private construction projects. The company has participated in the modernization of some of the most important buildings in Argentina, having purchased its first Potain tower crane from France in 1981. CRIBA has been recognized as the best construction company in Argentina by Fortuna magazine. Since 2012, CRIBA has expanded to neighboring Uruguay, building a high-rise tower in Punta del Este.

Tecno Dealer is Argentina’s premier Potain distributor and tower crane rental company. Founded in 1978, the company began its partnership with Potain in 1980, becoming involved in some of the highest profile construction developments across the country. Since then, Tecno Dealer has expanded its high-level operations to Uruguay, Paraguay and Bolivia, and has built a reputation for delivering the best equipment and service to the country.

About The Manitowoc Company, Inc.
The Manitowoc Company, Inc. (“Manitowoc”) was founded in 1902 and has over a 116-year tradition of providing high-quality, customer-focused products and support services to its markets and its 2018 net sales were approximately $1.8 billion. Manitowoc is one of the world's leading providers of engineered lifting solutions. Manitowoc, through its wholly-owned subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, markets, and supports comprehensive product lines of mobile telescopic cranes, tower cranes, lattice-boom crawler cranes, and boom trucks under the Grove, Manitowoc, National Crane, Potain, Shuttlelift and Manitowoc Crane Care brand names.
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