Khalifa Port | Abu Dhabi

Crane Rail Refurbishment

Bemo Rail is an innovative Dutch company that has grown year-on-year with the help of highly educated, hard-working employees. Since its foundation in 1970, Bemo Rail has developed into an expert in the field of rail, crane track, railway technology and rail-related transport globally.

Bemo Rail is refurbishing 18 kilometres of container stacking cranes at Khalifa Port in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), previously commissioned by Abu Dhabi Ports. Over the next few months, Bemo Rail will continue the refurbishment of 24 blocks of AS86-rail container stacks with discontinuous support, designed in-house by their engineering team.

During the pre-construction phase of the project, Rakhi Joshi from Primaplan was hired as a Project Professional to take responsibility for Planning and Document Control.

Baseline schedule

A baseline schedule was set-up during the pre-construction phase. Rakhi is responsible for weekly schedule updates, tracking progress and sharing project updates with the client. The construction phase of the project started in May 2021 comprising 13 phases with a contractual duration of 56 days for each phase. Every week, progress is marked against the baseline and the budgeted costs. “Despite the initial delay in the first three months, we have made remarkable progress on the project. The first phase took about 90 days to complete; whereas Phase 3 was finished in just 35 days, and we are now aiming to finish the upcoming phases in approximately the same time” says Rakhi. This means that the project is forecast to finish well in advance of the stipulated completion date.

Khalifa Project 1

Project challenges

There was a considerable delay at the beginning of the construction phase. The client has stringent Planning & Document control requirements along with lengthy procedures.

Abu Dhabi and the Netherlands have different time zones. In UAE, Fridays are non-working whereas Sundays are working. This created a gap in the reporting process, initially. Rakhi works remotely for the project (from the Netherlands) and sometimes works on the weekends as well.

As Project Manager at Bemo Rail, responsible for the Khalifa project, I’m very pleased with the way Primaplan has worked with us on this project. The swift response of Primaplan at the beginning of the project helped us to get the project on track. Working with Rakhi has been a pleasant experience. She knows what’s expected and really works as a member of our team on this project. You can always reach her, no matter the day or time.

Stefan de Rijck, Project Manager Bemorail

The brighter side

We were able to plan for anticipated risks in advance, which had a positive effect on overall team performance. Good communication between the team members (despite the distance), has been very helpful. As a result, we have managed to shorten the duration of project phases to 35 days, compared to the contractual 56-day period.

Great communication with the project supervisor and project manager has helped reduce the reporting gap and allowed the team to work more efficiently. “While visiting my family in India (over the winter), I still worked on the project and the communication with the site team was great. The team members are just a (WhatsApp) message away and are always available for a Teams meeting whenever required. I receive site photos and daily reports and feel very much connected to the site team! It is amazing to see people working from different corners of the world on the same project and contributing their best!” says Rakhi.

Khalifa Project 2