Steel from Differdange chosen for earthquake-resistant high-rise in Manila

An earthquake-resistant luxury apartment complex in the Philippines will feature 700 tonnes of ArcelorMittal Luxembourg steel.

Known as the “Imperium Tower”, the 63-storey residential high-rise in Metro Manila is being built using HISTAR® 460 sections produced by ArcelorMittal Europe — Long Products’ mill in Differdange.

Jean-Claude Gerardy, senior project sales manager, said: “Steel is a popular choice for construction projects in areas prone to earthquakes. HISTAR® steel provides structural resilience and ductility, satisfying the needs of designers for light and economical structures which also meet safety and sustainability criteria”.

Located in one of the world’s most severe seismic zones, the tower – designed by architects CallisonRTKL – is not only earthquake-resistant, but boasts a pool and fitness facilities, recreational space, and mini theatre.

Set to become a landmark in the desirable Capital Commons area, the Imperium features angled windows that ensure unobstructed views of the horizon and nearby park.

The Imperium is expected to be completed in 2018.

Earthquake-proofing the tower

American structural engineering firm Magnusson Klemencic Associates (MKA) are the masterminds behind the tower’s earthquake-resistant structure, which uses a methodology called “Performance-based seismic design” (PBSD), as president Don Davies explains:

“By using PBSD and non-linear modeling techniques it’s possible to better simulate the behaviour of a structure under strong seismic ground motions, or strong winds. This allows us to better predict how a building will perform, and propose solutions that put materials where they are more efficient for their intended purpose”.

HISTAR® composite sections used as outriggers

The building’s stability and strength is enhanced by connecting the building’s central concrete core with perimeter columns featuring HISTAR® steel rolled shapes, which provide increased column strength while allowing column size to be reduced by as much as 50% compared to all-concrete columns. Reducing column size enables a greater ratio of useable floor space per unit, helping to offset other costs.

MKA engineers also specified the use of buckling restrained braces (BRB) to absorb energy from an earthquake in a ductile and predictable way.

 Image credit: CallisonRTKL, design consultant for the project