Harbour Town Eats, Gold Coast
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: Saba Bros Tiling Contractors
ARCHITECT: The Buchan Group Gold Coast – Stephen Jarvis
Harbour Town Eats is a multimillion-dollar dining space and food court in Australia’s largest outlet shopping centre. Based in the Gold Coast, Harbour Town Shopping Centre, Harbour Town Eats has an iconic outdoor open-air design. As one of the prime locations in Australia, it was important that the food court had excellent floor tiling solutions in line with the modern design of the surrounds.
The project involved renovating the food court from the cinema complex at one end to the decorative fountain at the other, which is a total of 4000m2 plus an extra 1000m2 of tile adhesive fixed direct to the new concrete.
The primary challenge was that the substrate was formed in many small separate panels of concrete and/or brick paving with a central dividing walkway of pebblecrete and broken mosaics. One section of asphalt had to be removed and new concrete cast for the new tiles near the fountain.
Work had to be completed between 9pm and 6am every day as the cinemas and retail food outlets had to remain operating throughout the period.
Additionally, the tiles in the al fresco dining areas had to be laid in a French bond pattern using a mix of square and rectangular tile shapes up to 600 x 600mm in size. Whilst a similar style was laid in the central walkway.
There were some moisture concerns as the ARDEX system had not been used externally prior to this project. Finally, the thresholds of each retail food outlet had to be finished with minimal slope.
A specific ARDEX system was recommended to ensure a consistent and high-quality look. This system included ARDEX Flexbone UI 740 which is a high load-bearing, bonded, uncoupling membrane which is ideal for use with tiles and stone in high traffic areas. The system helps neutralise underlying substrate movement and supports and distributes heavy loads from above. It also helps prevent grout joint and tile damage from movement and deflection.
ARDEX Quickbond and ARDEX E 90 admix was the adhesive used which provided a quick-dry solution so no retail outlet was affected and could continue trade as normal. ARDEX FG 8 cement-based grout provided excellent workability and ensured a smooth finish.
The builder decided on using the recommended ARDEX Flexbone system as a result of moisture concerns. As the tiling contractor was not a familiar with ARDEX products, ARDEX provided resources onsite demonstrating the correct installation techniques.
Products used for this project
ARDEX UI 740 Flexbone
- High load-bearing bonded uncoupling membrane
- Helps prevent grout joint and tile damage from movement and deflection
Quick Setting Tile Adhesive
- Unique adhesive with fast setting properties - grout after 2.5-3 hours
- Good pot life - remains usable for up to 45 minutes
ARDEX E 90
Admix for Cement-Based Tile Adhesives
- Improves adhesion and imparts flexibility
- Provides a water repellent mortar – when tiling in showers, swimming pools
ARDEX FG 8
Flexible Coloured Grout for Tile Joints 1 to 8 mm Wide
- Strong uniform colour - reduces efflorescence
- Polymer fortified – reduces likelihood of cracking
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