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Green concrete

Green concrete: breathe cleaner air

Polish cities are facing the challenge of improving air quality, which is polluted by smog. According to the report of the Polish Economic Institute: "SMOG and its consequences", the air in Poland is one of the most polluted compared to other European Union countries, with regards to measuring the substances that are most harmful to health in the atmosphere.

As a company responsible for the environment where we develop our properties, we decided to replace the traditional concrete pavement used in communication routes with an innovative solution - green concrete, which cleans the air and reduces the concentration of nitrogen oxides (NOx) that are hazardous to human health.

Dynamic urban development and its climatic consequences

According to research conducted by the United Nations, cities are currently inhabited by half of the world's population, and by 2030 it will be about 60% of the population.

Such dynamic development of cities has its consequences related to the issue of road transport, which generates nitrogen oxides causing inflammation in the respiratory tract and, over the course of many years, shortening people's lives.

The source of nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions is primarily road transport (37%), therefore the problem of high concentrations of this pollutant occurs mainly in large cities.

Laboratory and field tests carried out by experts from Poland and Italy have proven that the area where we used green concrete has an average of 30% lower nitrogen oxide concentration compared to the normal section of the pavement. Additionally, green concrete does not lose its properties during use.

Thanks to the technology used, we neutralize harmful substances in the polluted air every year, which are equivalent to the exhaust gases of diesel cars that have traveled at least 360,000 kilometers.

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How does green concrete work?

Green concrete, thanks to its unique properties - containing titanium oxide (TiO2) - under the influence of sunlight initiates the photocatalysis reaction, which reduces air pollutants, including nitrogen oxides, to simple compounds that are safe for the environment.

As a result of the photocatalysis reaction on the surface of the concrete slab, compounds from car exhaust gases that are harmful to humans are reduced. Harmful NOx particles are broken down into harmless, environmentally friendly particles, similar to those used in fertilizing plants.

The use of materials with TioCem® cement has been the subject of many research projects and implementations around the world. Skanska, together with its science and business partners, has used this type of concrete for the first time on a large area of ​​the Generation Park office development in Warsaw in 2018.

Laboratory tests carried out by Skanska, Górażdże Cement S.A. and research partners showed that the mechanical and chemical properties of fresh concrete do not change over time and that nanometric titanium oxides are stably embedded in the microstructure of the concrete.

Self-cleaning concrete - how does it work?

What distinguishes green concrete from traditional concrete is the content of titanium dioxide, which is an addition to the technologically advanced TioCem® cement.

Due to the photocatalytic properties of concrete containing TioCem® cement, the green concrete is self-cleaning. It is possible because in the oxidation processes, not only harmful compounds contained in the air are neutralized, but also dirt covering concrete surfaces, such as grease, oils, dust, and bird droppings. When they're neutralized they are easily washed away by rain.

At Skanska we care about ecology in the city, see our projects using green concrete

Green concrete is a technology that is becoming a standard in Skanska investments. Thanks to this, local residents and users of public spaces can enjoy much better air quality near our office complexes located in city centers, i.e. work and meeting places.

heck out our projects in which we used green concrete!

Centrum Południe

Centrum Południe is the first project in the capital of Lower Silesia that utilizes green concrete. During the first phase, approximately 1,380 sqm of anti-smog pavement was laid, neutralizing pollution emitted by cars. Centrum Południe is also the first office building in Wrocław to receive the prestigious WELL certificate.

Find out more about the Centrum Południe project!

Nowy Rynek

The first green concrete pavement in Poznań will have almost 4,000 sqm. Works will begin in the first quarter of 2021, and the commissioning is scheduled for the second quarter, along with building D of the Nowy Rynek complex. Within a year, the pavement will neutralize the equivalent of pollutants emitted by a diesel car that has driven over 70,000 kilometers.

Find out more about the Nowy Rynek project!

High5ive

The High5ive complex is being built at ul. Pawia. It will consist of five buildings and will provide a total of approx. 70,000 sqm of modern office space. The "green concrete" pavement was built on an area of nearly 1,900 sqm, around the third and fourth buildings of the High5ive office building.

Find out more about the High5ive project!

Wave

Green concrete in Gdańsk is another step in implementing our sustainable development strategy. We are the first in the Tri-City to introduce concrete that cleans the air of car exhaust fumes, thus contributing to improving the quality of life in the vicinity of our Wave project. The pavement with special properties is being built on the side of Al. Grunwaldzka, next to our project.

Find out more about the Wave project!

Generation Park

Our first "green" pavement was built next to the Generation Park office project in Warsaw. 2,141 sqm of air-purifying concrete was laid within the complex. Tests proved that thanks to the technology used, the concentration of nitrogen dioxide was lowered by 30% compared to the standard section of the pavement.

Find out more about the Generation Park project!

Project partners

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Górażdże Cement SA - strategic partner

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Faculty of Geology, University of Warsaw - scientific partner

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Institute of Geophysics of the Polish Academy of Sciences - scientific partner

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Faculty of Civil Engineering, Warsaw University of Technology - scientific partner