Specialty and Conventional Structural Foundations

Geosyntec provides nationally recognized expertise and specialized geotechnical and geological engineering (geoengineering) services to evaluate and improve the design and construction engineering properties of soil and rock foundations. Our geoengineering specialists form one of the leading practices in the United States. They are recognized for their ability to develop practical guidance, and efficient designs conducive to aggressive construction schedules commonly imposed by project economics.

Our geoengineering practice focuses on difficult and challenging sites where the development of dependable, cost-effective foundations, and other geostructural solutions are critical to the success of the project. Our practitioners accomplish this by establishing a thorough understanding of the project site, developing a technical framework for the project, and incorporating the critical non-engineering drivers such as schedule and project economics into the early stages of our planning.

Our geoengineering professionals have responded to the challenges of increasingly unfavorable site conditions by developing and applying sophisticated approaches to investigate and characterize sites; analyzing foundation behavior; altering the engineering characteristics of the soil and rock at a specific site through soil and rock improvement; and environmentally remediating sites. We implement these approaches so foundations and other subsurface structures can be constructed safely, adequately support the built environment, and withstand potential geohazards.

In just one example, Geosyntec was retained by a specialty geotechnical contractor to develop a detailed excavation design for a below-ground parking structure immediately adjacent to highly sensitive and large buildings of a medical facility in Texas. Our solution included designs for an anchored soldier beam and lagging wall comprising one or two tiers of prestressed ground anchors. The implementation of our design revealed a number of unforeseen obstacles involving installation issues and field conditions. As a result, Geosyntec was called upon to provide engineering services throughout the construction process. Our design avoided the significant number of obstructions (foundations, utilities, etc.) existing outside of the excavation footprint, and our client indicated that, based on the amount of obstructions encountered, our design avoided significant delays. We were also able to keep our client on track by the timely delivery of solutions to address field conditions and installation issues.

During the upgrade of a ship loading system at the Port of Long Beach in California, Geosyntec engineers planned and conducted an extensive field exploration program, evaluated the stability of an existing steel sheet pile wall, assessed the capacity of the existing concrete pile system, designed a new pre-stressed, 90-foor long octagonal pile system for support of a new ship loader, and provided construction oversight for installation of new piles. We successfully overcame several project challenges that included drilling and CPT testing in approximately 30 ft of sea water and rip-rap, as well as the evaluation of vertical and lateral capacity of the existing pile group. Geosyntec designed the new pile system (200- and 275-ton design capacities) for stringent differential settlement tolerances and gave special consideration to the evaluation of pile capacity under seismic loading conditions, including the impact of soil liquefactioninduced lateral spreading on piles. In addition, we performed driving system analyses using GRLWEAP and set the production pile driving criteria.

Lead Consultants

  • Paul Sabatini, Ph.D., P.E.
    Paul J. Sabatini, Ph.D., P.E., D.GE. is a Senior Principal with Geosyntec Consultants in their Oak Brook, Illinois office.  He has been a practicing engineer for 22 years and has been involved in ...
Geosyntec Consultants
Geosyntec is a specialized consulting and engineering firm that works with private and public sector clients to address new ventures and complex problems involving our environment, natural resources, and civil infrastructure.

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