Project using different kind of foundation

Darrell
Darrell Cole
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AMHERST - To some, it looks like a project on the surface of Mars and it has definitely turned more than a few heads.

To those in the know, however, Lindsay Construction is using a different sort of technology in its construction of the new Lawton's Drugs building on the corner of Victoria and Lawrence streets in downtown Amherst.

The company used a large crane last week to drive pilings into the ground to support the weight of the new store and it is now cutting off the pilings in preparation for the laying of the building's foundation in a couple of weeks.

"The pilings are for bearing capacity. Normally, you'd do it on the soil, but because of some unsuitable soils we have driven pilings below that level," project manager Andrew Myers said Monday.

For years the land that's being used for the new pharmacy and office building was the site of a gas station and garage. Myers said because of the site's former use it made better sense to drive pilings into the ground as a base rather than use the soil that's there.

"It will act as a normal foundation, the only difference is it will weight bear on the piles that bears on soil that is much deeper in the ground," said Myers, adding the pilings are about 25 to 30 feet below the ground. "The earth around it will not support the weight of the building, but the pilings."

He said using the pilings will add two to three weeks to the project.

Myers said it's a process that's often used in areas where the ground is unstable such as in areas of marshlands or land where there's a lot of fill.

dcole@amherstdaily.com



Organizations: Lindsay Construction

Geographic location: AMHERST, Mars, Victoria

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  • Huge
    January 18, 2010 - 11:15

    For years the land that's being used for the new pharmacy and office building was the site of a gas station and garage. Myers said because of the site's former use it made better sense to drive pilings into the ground as a base rather than use the soil that's there.

    TRANSLATION: That land is as contaminated as hell

  • George W.
    January 18, 2010 - 10:46

    You can thank the Irving's for that.