Parking Structure & Industry Insights

“Single source” is our thing. So, when you need the latest information about parking garage repairs, predictive maintenance, parking industry trends and more, you know exactly where to turn. We deliver streamlined insights that help you effectively maintain your parking structure — no matter what market you’re in.

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04/29/2022

Parking Garage Spring Maintenance Checklist

From snow to ice to wind, parking structures are subject to the worst conditions winter offers. As we move into warmer weather, now is the time to assess the winter damage your parking structure may have endured during the colder months so you can prioritize necessary maintenance and repairs. By performing regularly scheduled condition assessments and proactive maintenance, you can maximize the service life of your structure and also lower operational costs, reduce safety hazards and prevent premature structural failure.

 

How did winter wreak havoc on your parking structure?

No matter your parking structure’s age, construction type or condition, aggressive winter maintenance can cause damage that triggers costly repairs, downtime and even premature failure.

Snow & the freeze-thaw cycle

Damage related to winter maintenance activities can be significant. Pushing snow against the perimeter of the structure might seem like the right thing to do, but this could impose excessive loads against the perimeter walls and spandrels, causing them to bow outward. This can result in significant structural damage, requiring emergency repair. Also, piling snow more than a few feet can quickly exceed the design capacity of the garage, resulting in structural damage or collapse. Lastly, skid-steer loaders, often used to push or load out snow, can easily create damaging overloading conditions with full buckets of wet snow.

Plows and skid-steer loaders used to move snow can cause significant damage to traffic coatings, expansion joints and joint sealants. This damage allows water to penetrate below the surface, which can accelerate deterioration, particularly during fluctuations in the freeze-thaw cycle. An experienced professional can help evaluate and plan safe winter maintenance practices.

Ice

Ice may seem like it’s only a concern during the coldest winter weather, but it also causes problems that manifest later. Improper use of de-icers can cause corrosion, as chemicals like chloride in the de-icers migrate into a reinforced concrete slab, causing delamination or fractures.

Ice can also clog drains, which leads to standing water. In addition to creating a safety hazard for customers and staff in the winter, pooled water can corrode concrete, leading to additional damage later. Ice buildup can also cause damage in unexpected places, like wall joints or drains.

Water

Water can cause as much damage in winter as it does other times of the year. Whether it’s coming from rainfall or melted snow, it can cause significant stress that impacts your structure’s health. When water contacts concrete, it can seep into it, rusting and delaminating internal structures, like reinforcing steel. Water combined with chloride, as found in de-icers, can accelerate corrosion.

 

Prepare your parking garage for spring.

As you move into the spring season, it’s time to proactively identify winter damage so you can avoid costly and unplanned repairs down the road.

  • Inspect joints and surfaces for cracks, chips and other damage.
  • Examine waterproofing coatings as well as roof-level and architectural sealants, especially as they near the end of their service life.
  • Sweep parking surfaces to remove loose debris and clear any cracks that formed during winter. Loose debris on the surface can create a slip-and-fall hazard, while debris that falls into cracks can widen the crack even further.
  • Ensure drainage systems are cleared of debris and functioning properly to avoid the risk of standing water that can come with spring storms.

Post-winter assessments are essential to a proactive maintenance program that helps lower costs, mitigate risk and maximize your parking garage’s life span. Whether your structure experienced a normal winter or a 100-year storm, our structural experts can assess any damage and develop a proactive maintenance plan that reduces the impact of wintry weather on your business.

Along with an assessment, a proactive maintenance program will also prioritize and implement needed actions such as fixing concrete damage, repairing waterproofing coatings or performing a chloride-removing pressure wash. This approach might also identify gaps and help prevent damage during future winters. For example, it might suggest that third-party snow removal contractors receive additional training to reduce damage from snowplows.

 

Spring ahead with the right parking garage predictive maintenance partner.

As the weather warms, a proper maintenance assessment, prioritization and implementation are key to keeping your parking structure healthy. StructureCare’s team is ready to help you navigate post-winter challenges and ensure that your parking garage is ready for the spring season — and all the seasons that follow.

Learn more about winter damage repair and restoration solutions to protect your parking structure investment.

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12/14/2021

The Value and Benefit of Predictive Maintenance

Generally speaking, parking structure repair becomes top-of-mind for parking structure owners and parking management companies when there’s a problem — or worse, when they’re informed of a problem by someone else. With predictive maintenance, the surprises are eliminated, including damages, associated costs and unexpected downtime.

 

Predictive vs. preventative

Preventative maintenance is probably already a familiar term. It’s simply using past knowledge to stop larger repairs from being needed via routine, expected maintenance. As part of our business model, it helps parking structure owners with keeping repair costs down.

Predictive maintenance takes it a step further. Predictive maintenance assesses everything about a structure and uses that information (alongside our existing knowledge) to make informed predictions about what’s needed over the next three to five years. Predictive maintenance, unlike preventative maintenance, is based on figuring out what could happen to a structure due to how it was built, where it is and what it might experience.

A note to keep in mind, here: Most parking structure owners think that predictive maintenance isn’t really needed for a newly constructed garage. That’s not the case. In fact, the best time to start a predictive maintenance program is just after construction is finished.

The biggest benefit of performing a predictive audit on your newly constructed garage is that we may find issues that are still covered under warranty. Most parking structures come with a one-year warranty from the general contractor, so if we find a construction issue, like poor concrete cover, fixing it may be covered at no cost to you. Construction issues like these can accelerate deterioration, and that means a much shorter life for your garage and more potential repairs. By catching issues early, predictive maintenance can cut down on those problems and extend your parking structure’s service life.

 

The true cost of deferred maintenance

“Cost of deferral” is a term we use a lot at StructureCare. Simply put, it’s what can happen when small repairs aren’t made, leading to larger, costlier repairs. There are three types of service that a parking structure needs:

Interim maintenance: These are routine, small-ticket things that need to be done for a garage to be kept in good condition — your basic parking garage maintenance.

Service life replacements: This is the process of keeping up with items that have a limited service life, like waterproofing systems. These items wear down over time, so replacing them regularly is important.

Repairs and restoration: These range from relatively small to time-consuming, expensive repairs. Small or large, these types of projects are almost always avoidable when routine maintenance and service life replacements schedules are kept.

The good news is that we’ve found keeping up with the first two items on the list above makes the third item almost nonexistent for parking structure owners. And that’s what we’re talking about when we refer to “cost of deferral.” If interim maintenance and service life replacement is not done regularly, a parking garage will need repair and restoration. And that comes with a lot more cost and time. But keeping up with interim maintenance and service life replacements lets your approach to maintenance be routine and predictable, not reactionary.

 

Predictive maintenance in action

Predictive maintenance is an ongoing process that investigates not only how a parking structure was built but what is affecting it today and can potentially affect it in the future. It helps uncover the underlying cause of a problem instead of just the symptom, allowing for a long-term fix. Predictive maintenance strategies also evaluate the effectiveness of previous repairs while proactively monitoring and addressing service life replacement needs.

On top of that, a predictive approach assesses structural maintenance and repair strategies for value. By making sure to maximize repair and maintenance dollars, predictive maintenance can reveal the cost of addressing repair needs now compared to the cost of deferral.

In short, predictive maintenance is a program that looks at likely areas of accelerated deterioration, investigates likely areas where deterioration can occur and plans maintenance and upkeep to maximize the value of repair costs.

The entirety of predictive maintenance hinges on proactive solutions, reducing risks and managing life cycle costs. At StructureCare, we condense these ideas into anticipate, mitigate and control.

Anticipate — For our service contract clients, we perform a combination of full-scale assessments, field investigations and reviews. We use our findings to develop strategies to mitigate the root cause of any problems and help our clients prioritize the work that needs to be done.

Mitigate — When StructureCare finds a problem, we move into the mitigate phase. This is where we complete preventative repairs and maintenance.

Control — With both the anticipate and mitigate steps in place, you gain control over the future of your parking structure. Control, in this case, means you can plan for repairs with less disruption to operation, stretch your budget further and not wake up to a big, costly problem.

Predictive maintenance, at its core, is about making decisions rather than responding to issues. Slowing down the rate of deterioration, managing life cycle costs and maximizing service life all lead to the best return on maintenance investment.

 

Why predictive maintenance is so valuable

Predictive maintenance is all about time. Without it, you’re stuck reacting to problems — and typically not at a time that is convenient. When you’re focused on interim repair and service life replacement instead (discovered in the “anticipate” phase and handled in the “mitigate” phase explained above), you aren’t just responding to problems. You have time to plan out when repairs are going to happen.

For example, with predictive maintenance, you can plan to install a new waterproofing treatment on your schedule. Instead of an emergency repair that shuts down your garage during your busiest month, you can look ahead and select a slower period when this service life replacement will happen. That way, you avoid an emergency leak situation, minimize disruption and can budget for the repair.

Another big benefit of predictive maintenance is how much it can extend the life of your parking structure. Typically, a garage’s service life is 70 to 75 years, and neglect can drastically reduce it. But with a predictive maintenance program in place, parking garage owners can see double or triple the service life of a neglected garage.

Predictive maintenance also helps you maximize the use of your garage. If even a part of your garage is in bad shape, it may take hundreds of parking spaces out of use, which costs you revenue. By keeping up with maintenance and addressing issues proactively, you ensure the whole structure is usable for the long term. And although you’re going to spend more consistently on maintenance over the life of your parking structure, it’s still far less than you’d spend tearing down and rebuilding a brand-new garage.

 

How to get started

Getting started with predictive maintenance can seem huge, but the truth is the right partner can help. Instead of depending on an assortment of groups (structural contractors, engineering firms, project managers, consultants, etc.), it’s best to find a single partner who can own everything. And that’s what we do — from assessing a parking structure to inspection and repair. With one partner who owns the program, predictive maintenance becomes the key to unlocking the longevity of a parking structure. Partner with us for a predictive audit of your parking structure. From there, we’ll work with you to determine maintenance and repair strategies and discuss what practices and structural preservation systems can be put in place to avoid more costly repair work in the future. Plus, we’ll educate your training and maintenance staff so they can spot issues and get them resolved faster and more accurately.

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12/14/2021

A New Approach to Parking Garage Repair Contractors

You notice a problem in your garage. Maybe a crack has formed in a concrete pillar. Maybe a patron complained about staining on their car. Or maybe you’ve noticed that your parking structure leaks after a heavy rain. Now that you’ve identified a potential problem, the next question is — who do you call?

Unfortunately, the answer isn’t always obvious. What you see on the surface might not be the root cause of the problem. And completing superficial fixes in lieu of what’s actually needed can lead to more expensive repairs down the line. So, how do you get started when you need a repair?

 

The traditional approach to finding a contractor

  • There are many different types of contractors who may need to get involved in maintenance and repairs, depending on the scope of work. And at times, hiring parking garage repair contractors won’t be enough. You may also need to get an engineering firm, project manager and even a consultant involved.
  • But working with multiple vendors can get tricky fast. First, it can be hard to make sure they’re all communicating with each other — and with you. Each vendor may have a different communication process, and unless you’re heavily involved in the work that’s being done, you may not always be aware of who’s talking to whom. For instance, have the structural contractors verified that they can execute the plans from the engineer? And if they haven’t, who’s following up on it?
  • That also brings us to the issue of accountability. If something doesn’t go as planned, someone has to sort out who’s responsible for fixing the issue. In traditional parking garage maintenance and repair processes, that task typically falls on the facility manager and can require hours of back-and-forth, which may lead to change orders that eat into your annual budget.
  • Additionally, the construction of your parking garage may play a role in what contractors you need. A precast parking garage will have different considerations versus a cast-in-place garage, so it’s important to find experts who specialize in the services you need. For example, certain waterproofing contractors may be highly experienced in applying elastic joint sealants in a precast structure, but they may not be as experienced in applying topical sealers.

 

The streamlined approach to choosing a contractor

So, with all those considerations in mind, how do you find parking garage repair contractors (and other necessary service providers) with the right mix of expertise, responsiveness and ownership? You could put together your own team, making phone calls, coordinating separate organizations and managing the work yourself. But there’s an alternative approach: Find a partner who manages it all for you.

When you partner with StructureCare, we serve as a single point of contact for parking garage maintenance and repairs. In fact, you don’t even need to determine what the problem is. If you see something that concerns you, simply contact us and we’ll come out to diagnose the problem right away.

After we’ve identified the root cause of the issue, we’ll make a customized, engineering-led recommendation on how to fix it. We’ll even provide a timeline and a price quote, guaranteeing that the price we’ve quoted for the scope of work won’t change even if we run into unexpected challenges after we get started.

Once you’ve signed off on the plan, our team owns the whole process. We’ve established relationships with the best firms in the industry — from parking garage restoration contractors to concrete repair contractors — and we’ll coordinate any onsite work that needs to happen. We’re also fully accountable for delivering the project on time and within budget. That means if something doesn’t go as planned, we’re committed to making it right with no extra effort on your part.

Our streamlined approach gives you a single point of contact for concerns, questions and problems related to your parking garage. We’ll also communicate the status of ongoing projects as often (or as little) as you’d like. And without the need to coordinate structural contractors, engineers and other outside vendors, you’ll have more time to focus on the day-to-day operations at your facility and the needs of your customers.

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12/14/2021

How to Handle Parking Structure Weather Challenges Year-Round

Weather resiliency, or the ability of a structure to withstand weather events, has become increasingly important as weather patterns change and become more severe. But even without severe weather, parking structures will face plenty of challenges thanks to rain, snow, extreme heat and wind.

There are two ways to look at responding to the environment. The first, and more costly, is to only address weather-related damage when it happens. The other is to proactively plan and prepare for it, saving money and time and increasing the service life of your garage.

 

Common weather challenges

Water

Water is perhaps one of the most frequent environmental challenges to a parking garage. Water can degrade concrete and seep into supporting metal structures, causing rust and delamination, while salt from marine environments can cause accelerated corrosion. A little bit of water might not seem like a big problem, but it’s important to keep in mind that years of water penetration, without treatment, creates cumulative damage to your parking structure. Ultimately, this leads to much bigger, much more expensive fixes. That’s why keeping up garage waterproofing efforts is so important.

Snow

Damage from snow can happen in a few different ways. Overloading due to piled snow can put more weight on your structure than the design allows. And plow damage can happen when a plow piles snow against a load-bearing wall, pushing it away from the structure and dislodging it, which could cause structural damage and the need for emergency repair. Likewise, chemical damage is possible if a garage is improperly treated for snow and ice.

Sun/Heat

Extreme heat can cause a structure to expand and contract in ways that, if not considered during building, may result in cracking and oxidation. Likewise, waterproofing sealants and coatings may crack apart in the heat, which means the next time it rains, your parking structure isn’t protected.

 

Your every-season checklist

Being proactive when facing weather challenges throughout the year can mean the difference between expensive, unplanned repairs and routine, expected maintenance as part of your weather resiliency plan. An important part of weather resiliency, and one that’s often overlooked, is maintenance staff training. If your maintenance staff doesn’t know how to identify, address or avoid common weather-related challenges, your parking garage will continue to deteriorate or experience unexpected damage from weather-related incidents.

Outside of training, however, there are specific ways to address weather-related issues throughout the year.

Spring

The biggest challenge with spring is rain. So, take steps to make sure your garage is ready.

  • Check for water damage and pooling near drains and other low-lying areas.
  • Watch for leaks during heavy rainstorms and schedule repairs, if needed.
  • Perform an inspection to uncover and address any new winter damage.
  • Look for cracks in the concrete, chipping in topical waterproofing coatings and any damage to joints.

Summer

Summer certainly comes with the challenge of rain, but it can also mean heat waves and severe storms.

  • On very hot days, check on joints and waterproofing coatings for cracking and flaking.
  • Check for water pooling and leaks after heavy rains.
  • Perform an inspection for structural damage after severe storms.

Fall

Fall can bring any number of challenges, including rain, snow, cold and heat. But this is also the time to prepare for winter maintenance.

  • Check drains for debris buildup and clear any clogs.
  • Inspect waterproofing surfaces after large temperature fluctuations.
  • Prepare your team for the colder months with winter maintenance training.

Winter

The biggest concerns for a parking garage during winter are snow and ice. But with training and preparation, you can overcome these challenges.

  • Inspect joints and surfaces after snow cleanup or ice removal for accidental damage to joints or parking garage deck waterproofing.
  • Lessen the chance of damage by clearly marking joints for easy identification during snow removal.
  • Check for ice buildup in unexpected places, like wall joints or drains.
  • Ensure snow piles are not heavier than your parking structure can handle.
  • Use de-icers to prevent slip-and-fall injuries.
  • Make sure your maintenance crew applies de-icers correctly to lessen the risk of corrosion.
  • Communicate with third-party contractors about joint locations and where to pile snow.

 

A partner that’s ready year-round

Being ready for what the weather has to dish out can be challenging, but that’s what StructureCare is here for. With our extensive knowledge and experience, we can help you develop a proactive maintenance plan that accounts for extreme weather and typical wear-and-tear. Plus, we can help train your staff to look for the signs of weather-related deterioration long before they become much bigger problems.

After a severe weather event, we can also come to your parking garage and determine what damage occurred and how to handle it quickly. We’ll even coordinate all third-party contractor repair communication. Our job is to make sure your parking garage is ready every season of the year so you don’t need to worry about every dark cloud on the horizon.

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02/04/2022

Preventive vs. Predictive Maintenance Guide for Parking Garages

Every environment. Every season. Every day. Your parking structure is constantly exposed to harsh conditions that impact its structural health. In this guide, we’ll walk you through how to protect your investment with a strategic maintenance approach.

Learn how a well-planned, regular predictive maintenance program that addresses three maintenance categories is the key to managing your parking garage’s structural health — and your budget. Get your free guide: “Preventive vs. Predictive Maintenance: How to reduce costs, mitigate risk and maximize parking structure service life with a proactive approach.”

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02/16/2022

When It Comes to Parking Structure Repairs, Don’t Wait

There are many factors that may make your building’s maintenance needs different from those of the parking garage just down the street. But all garages require some level of upkeep to ensure they’re safe, functional and able to be maintained cost-effectively. Putting off routine maintenance and small repairs allows deterioration to occur, and that deterioration — if not taken care of in a timely manner — can accelerate and lead to higher overall costs.

 

Understanding the three levels of parking structure maintenance and repair

There are three levels of maintenance and repair that help keep your parking structure in good condition throughout its service life. The first two items on this list should be completed regularly, and the main idea in doing so is to reduce the likelihood of having to address the third item — large-scale repairs and restoration.

  1. Interim Maintenance

Interim maintenance refers to routine, small tasks you do that are important to the overall health of your garage. If you think of your car, for example, you regularly have the oil changed, get it inspected and take it to the car wash to keep it in good condition.

For your parking garage, this means having the structure inspected frequently to catch any potential issues. Interim maintenance can also refer to completing minor repairs and ensuring your staff is up to date on best practices for chemical use, winter maintenance and other tasks.

  1. Service Life Replacements

Just like tires and brakes on a car have to be replaced periodically, so do your structure’s waterproofing systems, lighting and other items. These are called service life replacements, because these items were never expected to last the life of your garage.

By replacing key systems as they wear out, you’re preventing deterioration from setting in. A waterproofing system, for example, protects your parking structure from leaks, corrosion and water migration through joints, which over time can cause structural damage that’s costly to fix.

  1. Repairs & Restoration

Imagine you’ve owned your car for 20 years and never once changed the oil. Would you be surprised if a mechanic told you the reason you broke down is because the engine needed to be replaced? This category is similar to that situation because, in many circumstances, completing interim maintenance and service life replacements timely and effectively can mitigate the need for large-scale repairs.

When damage reaches this stage, it often gets addressed through structural repairs that take some — or all — of your parking garage out of service. The result is time-consuming repairs, costly projects and, ultimately, lost revenue.

 

Emergency repairs vs. planned repairs in parking garages

Emergencies can happen at any parking garage, but by keeping up with maintenance, you’re reducing the likelihood of one happening to you. Emergency repairs are unexpected, are unpredictable and can be costly. You often have to address them in a hurry because the consequences could be catastrophic if the issue isn’t resolved.

On the other hand, planned repairs are well-timed, cost-effective and less disruptive. For instance, if you manage a higher education parking structure, you may be able to plan necessary repairs for summer break rather than needing to close a section of your garage mid-semester.

Another way to think of emergencies vs. planned repairs is to compare reactive vs. proactive thinking. You can wait until you — or worse, a customer — notices a problem, or you can get into a routine where you always know the condition of your garage, including how it will impact your budget.

 

What does the term “cost of deferral” mean for parking structures?

So, as mentioned earlier, time is your biggest enemy when it comes to parking structure deterioration. The term “cost of deferral” means that the cost of repairing your garage goes up exponentially if small issues go unaddressed and are allowed to become larger problems.

Experts can usually identify small, observable symptoms as soon as deterioration begins, which is why regular inspections are so important. Over time, this deterioration accelerates, and what began as a minor issue may turn into a safety concern, potential hazard or structural problem.

 

Exploring a real parking garage maintenance and repair scenario

Let’s look at a scenario that demonstrates what we mean by “cost of deferral.”

  • After several months of significant rainfall, you notice red staining on one wall of your garage. It seems like a cosmetic problem, so you ignore it. A month later, several customers complain of water dripping onto their cars. You check the area they mentioned, which is near the area with staining, but you don’t observe any active dripping.
  •  
  • A few months go by, and you get a call that during a recent rainstorm, water was rushing down an interior wall of your garage. You have someone come out to look at it, but the quote they provide is more than you’d like to pay. Plus, you don’t have time to coordinate repairs, because it’s your busy season.
  •  
  • You decide to deal with the issue later. A year later, after a long winter, the red staining on the wall is more significant, and you notice that a large crack has formed in one of the support columns. An expert comes out to look at it and explains that a structural repair is necessary. It will require you to close off two floors of your garage during your busiest season, and the quote is significantly higher than the one you received a year ago. At this point, you must have the crack repaired to avoid a catastrophic failure, so you go ahead with the repair.

If experts had stepped into this scenario sooner, they could have identified the root cause of the water problem. For example, maybe they would have pointed out that joint sealant on the roof had cracked due to age and allowed water to leak between floors. If the joint sealant had been replaced back when the initial staining on the wall was noticed, the problem could have been avoided completely with a minor repair that cost several thousand dollars rather than a large-scale restoration that costs several million.

 

Predictive maintenance as a solution for parking garage structures

With total neglect, a parking structure may only last one-third of its intended service life. But predictive maintenance can help you maximize your structure’s life while protecting your customers. Predictive maintenance is the process of anticipating problems, mitigating small issues and controlling your garage’s risk factors. It focuses heavily on the first two types of upkeep — interim maintenance and service life replacements — to avoid the need for large restoration projects and eliminate any situations where the “cost of deferral” would come into play.

A predictive maintenance approach identifies potential problems early using inspections and expert observations. Then, those assessments are used to create a prioritized plan for garage owners to follow over the upcoming months and years. This process empowers owners to take control of their budget and improve their understanding of their structure’s long-term maintenance needs.

Although predictive maintenance may increase your monthly maintenance budget, this increase is significantly less than the cost of just one large-scale repair. This process is also appropriate for existing and brand-new structures because it can be used to find design flaws in a recently built garage.

Learn more about how predictive maintenance can help you address issues in a timely manner.

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03/31/2022

Case Study: Innovative Concrete Restoration Revives Hospital Parking Structure With Zero Downtime to Critical Infrastructure

Complex concrete restorations often require engineered solutions that are carried out by expert teams working in close collaboration. Learn how StructureCare developed and implemented a challenging restoration project to combat hazards that threatened the structural health of a busy hospital’s parking garage.

 

Problem: Navigating a complex structural concrete repair

After a leaking storm drain caused significant damage to a regional hospital’s parking structure, the facility manager entrusted StructureCare, its longstanding parking structure preventative maintenance provider, to engineer and implement a solution that navigated several significant and unique challenges.

“These are the types of concrete restoration projects where StructureCare shines,” John McCormick, Vice President, Managing Director of StructureCare, states. “We were excited to embrace the complexity of this parking structure project, knowing it would allow us to showcase the depth of our technical engineering capabilities, as well as the inherent benefits of our streamlined approach. The team's innovative solutions and seamless coordination of all parties involved provided the client with exactly what they desired: a repaired structure, zero downtime or interruption to critical infrastructure and no budgetary surprises.”

The hospital encountered a deteriorated cast-in-place concrete column and damaged overhead girder that supported multiple parking garage levels, as well as mechanical equipment for the adjacent hospital building within the garage structure. The project was unique because the column and girder were surrounded by complex, hospital-grade mechanical equipment (boiler, steam pipes, HVAC ductwork, electrical conduit), which restricted access to make the repairs. Because of the mechanical equipment and the engineering solutions needed to repair the integrity of the structure, third-party specialist contractors were needed to perform the full scope of work. Lastly, to add to the project’s complexity, all repairs needed to occur while allowing the parking garage and critical hospital infrastructure to remain in service without any downtime.

 

Solution: Delivering outside-the-box parking structure solutions

Having historical knowledge of the garage, the StructureCare team was able to swiftly assess the challenges, prioritize needs, align third-party specialist contractors and develop a plan of action. Unlike other engineering firms, StructureCare’s unique turnkey approach enabled the team to work directly and seamlessly with the specialty vendors to design and implement the solution, rather than using the conventional model of working as separate entities.

The first step was to install temporary shoring to carry the loads on the concrete column and girder. Some of the mechanical equipment was temporarily relocated in a process that required very close coordination among the StructureCare team, the client and a mechanical contractor.

The remaining clustered mechanical assets prevented the use of conventional shoring systems, so StructureCare designed and fabricated custom shoring with structural steel (including a 40-foot shoring column) and rigging. Each element was developed to be precisely installed to maximize parking space in the garage’s compact facility. In addition, continuous mechanical operations required the use of a dust containment system due to the critical needs of the adjacent hospital system.

StructureCare also developed an innovative solution that used custom-designed fiberglass crane pads to serve as a temporary shoring foundation, allowing us to spread out shoring loads without damaging the existing concrete floor.

With the project complexities addressed, contractors were able to complete the water damage restoration.

 

Result: Ensuring long-term safety, operations and profitability

When a conventional solution wasn’t possible, StructureCare’s team developed an approach that was customized and highly engineered. StructureCare’s turnkey approach enabled the team to design and implement a solution that allowed the garage to remain open to hospital patients, visitors and staff during the project.

With the project completed, the lifespan of the hospital’s parking structure and the health of the critical mechanical equipment were significantly increased. The StructureCare team then worked with the hospital’s facility manager to provide training to the in-house maintenance team to increase their ability to recognize parking garage deterioration and root cause issues. With staff education and a proper preventative maintenance plan in order, this parking structure can avoid future costly repairs and remain safe, operational and profitable for many more years.

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