Testing the limits on the road

Pushing vehicles and tires to the extreme – that’s what the new ÖAMTC Experience Center in Saalfelden is all about. The new racetrack for driving tests, driver safety training, and events was launched in 2020 – in cooperation with BG-Graspointner.

It’s all about extremes on this track: high speeds, sharp turns, steep slopes that push tires and vehicles to their limits.

It’s all about speed

The ÖAMTC Center for Driving Technique (Fahrtechnik Zentrum) in Saalfelden was initially established in 1989. The venue is ideal for vehicle and tire manufacturers, companies and media partners, because the training track, the off-road facilities, and a 220,000 sqm ice track offer countless possibilities for driver training. This is why, after eight months of construction, the ÖAMTC Experience Center was launched as a one-of-a-kind racetrack in the fall of 2020.

Extreme all the way

The 50,000 sqm addition is all about high speed. The 1.5 km racetrack was planned and built especially for the purpose of testing the limits of tires and vehicles. It offers sufficient space for acceleration, and well as sharp turns, slopes and up to 11 percent grade inclines. A watering system simulates rain. But driving tests and driver training on the limit are only some of the many possibilities: How about range tests for electric vehicles or for innovations from the automotive?

Keeping the environment in mind

Before it became a racetrack, the site was used as a sewage sludge basin and an intensively treated meadow. The ÖAMTC then negotiated compensation with the Nature Conservation Authority in the course of land use proceedings. Ecological compensation areas were leased, and special biotopes created that are not fenced in to enable as many animal crossings as possible. A 700 m guidance system for amphibians was also installed. Manfred Pfeifenberger, Head of the Experience Center, underlines the importance of ecological solutions:

We wanted to build the center – but not at all costs.

Water conservation on the track

Felix Brennsteiner (markand GmbH) was responsible for the detailed 3D planning of the track, among others. He developed the final track model from rough-cut planning provided by Wurz Design and from drone images: Sliding surfaces, turns, watering and drainage of the track, slopes, inclines, etc. – all in line with the Austrian and German standards guidelines.

To simulate rainfall, 180 watering points supplied by ten different watering cycles were provided. The actual water supply comes from a 2,000 cubic meter industrial water basin. Any excess water caused by heavy rainfall is cleaned and drained via a ground filter and a filtration basin on the grounds. Plus, there is a groundwater well for longer dry periods.

High demands for drainage

BG-FILCOTEN® light channels and the BG-Graspointner slot top D400 were installed as a drainage system for the track. Manfred Pfeiffenberger:

We were looking for a drainage channel to drain the expected volumes of water in order to avoid hydroplaning, that would also be able to handle the constant strain due to continuous traffic and changing temperatures. BG-Graspointer’s recommendation was just what we needed. The channel is doing an outstanding job.

Thanks to the slot top, BG-FILCOTEN® light offers a particularly even surface that is needed for vehicle traction on this track.

Felix Brennsteiner shares this enthusiasm about the product quality:

The narrow channel is an excellent solution for draining water from the track.

And about working with BG-Graspointner:

They were flexible and able to supply special heights for the individual elements. BG-Graspointner’s hydraulic calculations were another bonus point. This helped us to plan even more strategically. It was great working with them, and we would be happy to do so again in the future.

If you are also in need of a drainage system for your challenging project, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our specialists:

Tel: 0043 6233 89 00 0
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Web: www.bg-graspointner.com

Project overview

Project name: ÖAMTC Expertise Center

Location: Saalfelden, Österreich

Installed channel types
BG-FILCOTEN® light NW 150 with Slot top, class D 400 kN

Total installed length in metres: 525 m

BG-project team: Kirchebner; Unterberger

Architect/planner: Planungsbüro markand GmbH; Firma Wurz Design

Building contractor: Swietelsky Zell am See

Markus Unterberger
Technical Support
BG-Graspointner | Austria
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