Haskell and geotechnical partner Building and Earth Sciences will receive a National Recognition Award from the American Council of Engineering Companies during the 2020 Engineering Excellence Awards in late April in Washington, D.C.
The honor recognizes what the partners did, which was to produce an “exceptional achievement” in geotechnical engineering. But in this case, the award also recognizes what they didn’t do, which was to build on a fault line.
Ground broke on the 1 million-square-foot production and distribution facility for the subsidiary of an international beverage company in September 2018, but the concept debuted several years before when Haskell was engaged for preliminary design and planning services.
It was in that first engagement, in 2015, when Russell Neudeck, the Haskell director and senior subject-matter expert responsible for geotechnical and concrete matters, brought in Building and Earth for a preliminary geotechnical site evaluation. The specialists’ study reported the presence of a critical vertical fault running through the middle of the proposed building footprint.
“I’ve been doing this for 33 years, and I’ve never been on a job where someone finds that there’s a fault going through a building site,” Neudeck said. “We gave them advice: ’You’ve got to move part of the building.’”
Relying on Building and Earth for even more exacting studies, such as geophysical site evaluation and subsurface drilling investigation, that revealed comprehensive site information, Haskell’s designers created a building that avoided the fault.
Then during construction, Building and Earth’s engineers were included in site work and foundation installation issues, and its materials-testing personnel kept pace with massive amounts of concrete used for poured-in-place tilt-wall panels and acres of pavement.
The results: A massive project delivered on schedule and on budget for a new Haskell client — and recognition at the event known as “the Academy Awards of the engineering industry.”
“Building and Earth is quite pleased, and we’re quite pleased,” Neudeck said. “We won this thing.”