Alpha One Property Management Kansas City

Alpha One Property Management Kansas City – Our work in Northeast Kansas City’s Blue River Valley Industrial Corridor dates back more than three decades and dozens of projects. One thing we have learned is to expect the unexpected from a land that has been subjected to the harsh conditions of industrial production time and time again. The unexpected is exactly what Midwest Scrap Management faced when they called us to get to the bottom of a complex foundation problem.

Midwest Scrap Management is a leading metal fabricator with locations throughout the region. At the center of the Kansas City company’s operation is a mega shredder that chews up everything from old cars to even larger pieces of industrial scrap. Cranes send the scrap on a conveyor to the shredder, and the evenly chopped results are separated and organized into piles around the property for recycling. Consider tree mulching bigger than you can imagine until you see it with your own eyes.

Alpha One Property Management Kansas City

Alpha One Property Management Kansas City

A conveyor belt loaded with scrap is headed for one of the largest shredders on the planet. Courtesy: Midwest Scrap Management

W 8th St, Lawrence, Ks 66049

An overhead view shows the sheer scale of the shredder’s operation and the piles of material it chews through.

When Midwest Scrap Management moved into the Blue River Valley Industrial Corridor (BRVIC) several years ago, the company knew it had found an ideal property for its colossal metal shredding operation. It was close to train tracks, a river, and key roads—all the access you’d expect from a well-established industrial center. The property also offers the benefits of deep foundations originally built to support the production of steel and steel products back in the early 1900s.

The shredder itself and the giant engine that drives it were placed on separate existing foundations. Anyone familiar with the Corridor will tell you that there is not much reliable documentation detailing the parameters of the old foundations. What we do know is that many of them are strong, deep, and originally built to last an extremely long time. Midwest Scrap Management couldn’t be sure if their foundations were anchored all the way to the unshakable rock. Over time, they found out the hard way.

“It became apparent that the foundations of the engine and shredder were slowly sinking,” recalls AOG director of engineering Garrick Abendroth. “Workers at the facility had done everything they could to make adjustments to compensate for the movement, but it just wasn’t enough.”

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Midwest Scrap Management’s shredder process is in high demand, running non-stop with only a few weeks of maintenance downtime each year. A steady stream of scrap metal is constantly flowing from scrap yards, railroad companies, construction companies, farms, the list goes on. That’s a big load on the foundations. And then there is vibration.

“The load itself is really something, and then you add the vibrations from the equipment and you put extreme demands on the foundations,” says Abendroth. “A huge motor that spins at thousands of revolutions per minute plus giant steel blades that shatter. I’ve seen a lot of massive industrial facilities and equipment, but this was different. All the forces at work shake all property and seldom stop.’

After a few years, the situation began to raise real questions about the foundations’ long-term viability. Our engineers were called in to take a closer look and soon realized that the foundations may have held up just fine under the weight alone, but the vibration on top of the load was too much.

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“The vibrations shake the soil particles in a way that weakens the soil,” explains Abendroth. “In fact, vibrations are often used purposefully to help drive objects into the soil. Even something as small as a vibrating stop sign post can be driven into the ground much more easily than simply pushing or punching. Shredder equipment had a similar effect on the foundations and surrounding soil.

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“You’re already working in the sand and mud of the Blue River Valley,” adds AOG President Alan Bush. “All that vibration consolidates and compacts all those particles over time. Without the foundations going all the way down to bedrock, subsidence will happen and continue to happen. In this case, the vibrations are so powerful that they probably descend over half the depth of the Blue River Valley channel.

The search for a solution focuses first on whether something can be done to stabilize the existing foundations. For months, we’ve been meeting with deep-fundamentalists and others to determine the potential, and the conclusions have been discouraging. Keeping the existing foundations would be too expensive and we can’t guarantee it will even work. Abendroth says there were too many unknowns.

“If we try to dig up those foundations to support them, we don’t know what we’ll find. Even if you have deployed sonar or similar technology, the risk of buried steel interfering with readings is high. This is a very expensive endeavor that would produce limited results. Also, the chance that we’ll eventually find conditions we can’t overcome is real, and then you’ve wasted all that money just to confirm a problem you already know you have.

While researching, we also worked closely with Midwest Scrap Management to understand the business priorities that would be critical in shaping the right solution. Taking the shredder operation offline for an extended period of time to work on the foundation was not an option as continuous production was paramount. And throwing away potentially millions of dollars in repairs that might not hold up in the long run wasn’t an option either.

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“It was a complex issue, and we had to maintain close communication with the owner as we explored what was possible,” Bush says. “I think that’s something that sets us apart at AOG. We truly believe that solid communication and collaboration are essential to achieving the best results under the right conditions. Garich in particular works hard to help the owners understand what we’re up against as engineers and what they’re up against as a company from a business perspective.”

The decision was made to abandon the existing foundations and build from scratch on another part of the property. It was a smarter investment that could provide decades of worry-free peace of mind. It can also be done without significant disruption to shredding production. The final plan called for building a new facility on new foundations better suited to the realities of the shredder’s operation, and then simply switching production from the old site to the new site without missing anything.

AOG evaluated the property and determined the right location for the new facility. It fits the work process of trucks and trains and offers base rock within a reasonable range of driven steel piles that will prevent significant displacement or subsidence.

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“We dug boreholes to see exactly what was possible with the bedrock,” Abendroth recalls. “Deep foundations with hundreds of driven piles were too expensive. So we looked more seriously at balancing cost and performance and decided that we could create far fewer stacks and simply strategically locate them in key locations to handle the heaviest workloads of the facility. The consistent level of the foundation in the building site we chose was a bonus.”

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But the news was not good for the new site. Not surprisingly, the top layer of the subsoil was like much of the rest of the Blue River Valley Industrial Corridor — brownfields. We at AOG are known for making the most of the material available, rather than just automatically exporting it, even if it’s not perfect. But Bush says that’s the exception.

“We were dealing with a layer of very old industrial brownfields and the risk of hidden obstacles such as car-sized debris, legacy structures and other objects blocking wells. We were also on a timeline that included the arrival and installation of new shredder equipment, which meant we wouldn’t have time to try to work around obstacles as they arose. So we dug about ten feet of earth through the site and replaced it.”

Replacing the top ten feet wasn’t as easy as just raking it out and dumping in new fill. Abendroth says groundwater making its way to the nearby Blue River spilled over when the soil was removed. “Ten feet down we’re still above the water table, so all the water from the higher ground drains into the river at that level. As the digging went on, the water became several feet deep.

“It was complicated and the groundwork hadn’t even started yet. It was just site preparation!” adds Bush. “Stabilizing land while also dealing with water takes experience. You have to be really willing to take on the unexpected. But when you’ve been down this road as many times as we have, you come prepared. You get your ducks in a row with shoes and an understanding of the bigger picture before you start. For example, you keep an eye on the level of the river itself and plan accordingly, because if the river rises while you’re working three feet down, you’ve got a big problem. You can’t pump the river dry.

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“In practice, we had to keep leaving water until it reached us

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Halo, Saya adalah penulis artikel dengan judul Alpha One Property Management Kansas City yang dipublish pada September 12, 2022 di website Smallcave