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CASE STUDYGULF COAST TOWN CENTER

SHOPPING MALL HELICAL INSTALLATIONPROJECT INFORMATION

Gulf Coast Town Center is an outdoor shopping mall located in Fort Myers, Florida. This upscale, open-air shopping mall is home to more than 100 stores, restaurants, and entertainment options which include spas, outdoor play area, and more.

Considered the retail shopping heartbeat of Fort Myers area for over ten years, Gulf Coast Town Center is receiving a multi-million dollar beautification makeover that will be absolutely stunning. The magnificent renovations, which will cost well over $10 million, will be felt, and experienced, throughout the property. The new ownership at GCTC is impassioned about this project and is committed to providing a state of the art outdoor shopping experience.

PROJECT CHALLENGES

Part of the exciting renovations is the installation of an engineered pedestrian bridge within the complex. The elevated walkway transcends over an existing water feature within the complex. The access for conventional pile driving or auger-cast equipment was severely confined. Consequently, engineers had to design a completely different deep foundation system. Helical Piling installation was going to be challenging, contemplating the abundance of sub-surface rock conditions in play.  The selected contractor would encounter a number of methodology challenges including construction in an active outdoor mall, limited construction access in a confined environment, along with a tight schedule.

HELICAL PILE INSTALLATIONTHE SOLUTION

Square and Round Shaft Combo Pile

Coastal Foundation Solutions proposed a pile that can assist with compression piling jobs in fractured lime rock. The square and round shaft combination helical pile is impeccable! The grouping of the square shaft lead section and the round shaft extensions both work successfully for hard difficult soils conditions. The square-shaped shaft portion of the design assists with harder, tougher soil, while, the rounded design works well with weaker surface soils. The round shaft extensions are also less prone to buckling. This class of helical pile is perfect for land that has weaker top coats of soils, mixed with dense and harder underlying soils. This soil configuration is common in Southwest Florida areas with higher water tables.

PROJECT OUTCOME

Coastal Foundation Solutions proposed solution proceeded precisely according to our strategy with no time delays. We successfully installed a total of four (4) 2 in. square shaft with 8”/10”/12” lead section helical piles, with an average pile length of 15 to 21 foot. The extensions consisted of RS3500.300 round shaft helical pile (3-1/2” OD – 0.300″ Wall Thickness). The helical pile installation process took a total of one working day. Forge Engineering effectively monitored the entire structural helical pile installation process and provided all the certifications flawlessly. The piling loads included 24 tons ultimate load capacity, but several pilings torqued up to 55 tons.

PRODUCT
  • Four (4) “Chance Combination Pilings” SS200 SQUARE SHAFT HELICAL PILE (2.0″ X 2.0″) new foundation pile with an 8”- 10”- 12” triple-helix lead section was installed in difficult lime rock conditions. A Komatsu MR 88 18,000-pound excavator with a specialized hydraulic drive head (16 Digga) was used to rotate anchors. Helical extensions progressed the tieback anchors to distances on the order of 15 to 21 feet to realize final installation torques. The ultimate capacities and design working tension load of 28 kips.
  • Nine (9) additional seven (7) foot RS3500.300 round shaft helical pile (3-1/2” OD – 0.300″ Wall Thickness) extensions were utilized to reach required load capability due to sub-surface soil variations and debris.
  • The helical anchor was connected to a conventional galvanized steel 8” x 8” x ¾” termination cap bolted into vertical pile.
  • We wish to thank Russ and Rick of J Raymond Construction of Orlando, Florida for allowing us to perform the helical pile installation.

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