Green and landscape maintenance
among Bordeaux vineyards
A new episode of the project “EnerGREEN MAINTENANCE Around the World”: in this second step, we crossed the Alps to visit our French colleagues, to discover together the incredible opportunities offered by this special territory. Garonne river, vineyards, Bordeaux castles become a wonderful frame for Energreen machines at work.
Gironde Department Council for Infrastructures
We are in the town of Bordeaux, main city of the Gironde Department and capital of the region Nouveau Aquitaine.
The meeting is with at the Infrastructure Office of the Gironde Departmental Council.
We are welcomed by Georges Petits, who tell us about the Department‘s activities and his role as Head of the Infrastructure Office.
Gironde’s is the largest department in France with an area of ten thousand seven hundred square kilometers and is inhabited by about one and a half million people.
The department’s activities touch on various aspects, from social ones such as schooling to more technical ones such as digital and infrastructure development.
The city of Bordeaux among nature, culture and wine
Worldwide recognized for its famous wine, Bordeaux has been on the UNESCO World Heritage list since 2007 for the uniqueness and beauty of its architecture that characterizes its historic center.
Despite its strong vocation as a tourist city, Bordeaux today represents one of the most active cultural centers in France and Europe: the contemporary art and music scene has found fertile ground here to expand and explore new currents, making Bordeaux a vibrant, youthful, and up-to-date city.
The river is another characteristic feature of the city of Bordeaux: the Garonne River ends its course along with the Dordogne River, together forming the Gironde estuary.
Beyond the city, the lands are a constellation of vineyards. Endless rows of clusters that fade as far as the eye can see and provide an incredible landscape.
Dotting this “green sky” stand out like stars the fabulous Bordeaux castles that, with their ancient cellars, represent a historical and architectural heritage more unique than rare.
The countryside then becomes a tourist attraction, where you can walk the taste trails, visit the châteaux, and indulge in a winery tasting to savor some of the world’s most famous wines.
The four cornerstones for safety in green maintenance:
visibility, functionality, protection and planning
In this various context, the Gironde Departmental Council proposes a very specific plan regarding green street maintenance activities.
“Safety in this context is fundamental” explains Georges who explains how the Mobility Office has developed a four-point scheme to increase the level of safety and decrease the risk of accidents.
First of all, much has been done on the level of visibility for road users: the cleaning of road signs, the maintenance of curves and blind spots with reduced visibility, and the cleaning of roadsides. All allowing drivers to continue on their route, ensuring the safety not only of them but also of the operators at work.
Another point concerns the so called functional elements of the territory that play a role of technical importance to the ecosystem. One example among all are ditches and canals that have to be preserved in such a state that they can channel and drain rainwater directly and with no obstacles. Preventive works are fundamental to avoid the vegetation from blocking the watercourse.
Third point concerns landscape preservation: it is necessary to maintain that fundamental balance between human action and the course of nature. Promoting the biodiversity of flora and fauna is part of this series of actions taken by the Department to promote conscious green maintenance. For the past couple of years, the Department has been carrying out the “fauchage raisonné = nature préservée” (“planned cut / nature preserved”) project.
A project based on the planning of how, how much, and where to cut with the aim not only of fire prevention but also to preserve biodiversity and trying to implement its variety of insects, small animals, and birds.
Last but not least the planning of interventions. Through a thorough study on the territory, the Infrastructure Office decrees aspects such as the limit of the height of vegetation or to cut down the highest branches of trees.
Also, with a view to planning, the Infrastructure Office has heavily invested in prevention for fire risk: in fact, an interdepartmental regulation has been stipulated between neighboring areas for the protection of forest and wooded areas.
Green maintenance machines at the service of infrastructure department
We follow the operators of Gironde Department during a day of work with the hydrostatic self-propelled machines by Energreen.
As mentioned, the environments in this setting are very varied: we go from isolated streets crossing the countryside to main roads where traffic is fast and dynamic.
Surrounded by vineyards, the new ILF Alpha is equipped with a T10 telescopic arm, cutting grass along riverbanks and irrigation canals, taking care of road edges.
The 90° rotating cab allows the operator to keep the focus and the attention on the work area. The New Speed flail head moves quickly and powerfully: taking advantage of the 180° slewing ring, it is possible to mow in both directions without having to move the entire machine.
The combination of the New Speed flail head and the Raiber Discovery 840 guardrail mower makes it easy to mow the dock a total of two meters wide.
Later we see the ILF B1200 equipped with the 10.5 meters telescopic arm T, cutting the vegetation near a highway.
The rotating turret – available also in the larger model B2000 – allows the self-propelled machines to get almost anywhere and provides the operator with full visibility, without compromising posture and concentration.
The New Speed flail head shred in thin elements even the thickest bushes, deeply cleaning the quay from the vegetation.
Finally, ILF Aspen equipped with telescopic boom FAST 6 takes care of trimming edges along a particularly busy road: thanks to its small and compact size, the vehicles run fast, avoiding the creation of dangerous traffic jams. The telescopic boom is perfect both for activity on the road edge and for long distance, in this case up to six meters.
“The Department chose Energreen machines for green maintenance works because of their reliability, ergonomics and quality” closes Georges, who sums up the totally positive experience of the Department with Energreen products.
Indeed, it is no coincidence that the Gironde Department – explains Georges – is under negotiation to purchase an Energreen radio-controlled robot. Robots are perfect for slow mobility maintenance such as bicycle and pedestrian paths (the Department has about 400 km of them), country roads, service, or rest areas. An ideal, non-invasive solution in a context where safety has to be at the maximum level not only for the operator but also for people that use these infrastructures.
Energreen wants to thank again all the staff of the Gironde Department, the Infrastructure Office and the city of Bordeaux for their participation, time and energy devoted to us and the trust placed in our project.
We hope to come back soon with new topics to discuss together!