By Tim Ramerth, PE - Civil Engineer, President/CEO February 18, 2021
Challenges that arise during design and construction need creative solutions. The remodel and addition project at Brainerd High School threw a nasty curveball this past year that posed a big challenge. An existing storm sewer pipe did not meet the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry (MNDOLI) requirements.
When an existing utility is modified it must meet current MNDOLI standards. For this project, additional storm sewer was needed, or, the existing storm sewer pipe would need to be replaced. Since the existing pipe ran under a portion of the building, the only way to meet MNDOLI's requirements was to tear down that portion of the building, replace the pipe, and reconstruct the building. However, this solution came with a price tag of $1,000,000.
Our team came up with a more cost-effective solution. We performed a jack and bore under the building to place a new pipe adjacent to the existing pipe. This method ended up costing about $400,000 and is fairly common when routing utilities under roads, railroads, and other projects that don't allow open cut installations. However, the jack and bore method was not recognized by MNDOLI, which required additional effort to get approved for a permit.
Watch this video to learn how Widseth's innovative jack and bore solution saved the Brainerd High School project approximately $600,000. The following team members share how they were involved with the jack and bore project.