Y-shaped precast columns contribute to construction progress of terminal 3

The overall project of implementing the new construction of terminal 3 is running at full speed. J-Pier, the largest passenger gate of the project, is also growing bit by bit. On the eastern plot of the former Rhein-Main Air Base the new terminal 3 is being built for up to 25 million passengers per year. Some 50 airplane parking lots are provided there. In the complete layout, the new terminal will consist of the four passenger areas G, H, J and K, with Anton Schick GmbH + Co. KG as part of the Schick Group being responsible for the construction of the H and J piers as well as the roughly 70m-tall tower.

With the aid of precast concrete elements manufactured at the headquarters of the Schick Group in Bad Kissingen and the location in Hanau, the J-Pier continues to grow as well. For this gate, 86 very special columns are placed along the pier. Y-shaped and colored, they will be eye-catchers for all of the travelers in the future. Each of the more than 100m-long Y-shaped columns with a weight of 25 tons will be installed sightly inclined at an angle of 7 degrees. A column is more than 5 m wide at the junction and 70 to 90 cm thick, depending on the cross-section. More than 8 m³ of concrete and more than 3 tons of steel are used in all Y-shaped columns. In the future, the columns will support the cantilevered floor slab of level 2. As they have two load points at the top and just one pillar at the bottom, a „forest of columns“ is avoided in front of the building. This results in the characteristic form of the Y-shaped column which in its cubature is reminiscent of a tree.


10m-long Y-shaped columns weighing 25 tons

The production of the columns takes place in the Schick Group‘s own precast concrete plant. Factory production has a lot of advantages compared to the production on the construction site: Hence, the basic conditions during production remain unchanged as the temperature in the factory is consistently above zero degrees and rain cannot change the concrete quality. The manufacture of such an individual architectural concrete component is only possible under these conditions, because the design of the Y-shaped columns is something very special, too, for several reasons. Apart from the trapezoidal shape, there are sharp edges and a few orthogonal angles. In addition, special properties have to be fulfilled owing to the requirements in terms of concrete technology and the high compressive strength. The concrete of grade C50/60 is one of the concretes with the highest load-bearing capacity, which are used by the Schick Group for the piers as part of the overall contract. The cement for the concrete was supplied by Schwenk Zementwerke KG, which have been the partner of building materials for the production of concrete in the precast plants of the Schick Group for many decades.

The production of the Y-shaped columns in the precast concrete factory is followed by their transportation. It takes place at night exclusively because at more than 5 m the columns have excess width and can only be moved by special heavy transports. In this regard, Anton Schick GmbH + Co. KG opts for trucks of type Arocs of Mercedes-Benz and special semi-trailers made by Faymonville. The transport is accompanied by own BF3 escort vehicles as well as the police. Once the columns have arrived at the construction site, they are installed along the J-Pier on both sides. On site, two own Liebherr mobile cranes are used to support the installation of the customized precast elements. The installation was also challenging for the team of Schick Group on site. Since the columns must be installed accurate to dimension, meeting the inclination of 7 degrees exactly. As there are no vertical surfaces, the technicians use state-of-the-art measurement technology. Additional support is provided by the creation of own gages so that the angular surfaces can be adjusted with the aid of a conventional spirit level anyhow. Various additional measuring points are provided under the actual column, facilitating the installation of the column. Nevertheless, the entire installation process of the Y-shaped columns is permanently attended by a survey team.

It will take until the summer of 2021before all of the 86 Y-shaped columns are in place at the J-Pier. Then the cantilevered floor slab of level 2 will be placed on the columns. All this is summarized in a video on the production, transportation and installation of the Y-shaped columns and is available at Further information on the construction progress and the dimension of this giant building project is available at


Anton Schick GmbH + Co. KG

Häuserschlag 3

97688 Bad Kissingen/Germany

+49 9736 42-0

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