ICRI 2013 Project Award Winner
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Award of Excellence: Parking Structures Category

Houston Hobby Airport Parking Structure Rehabilitation
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Houston, Texas

Submitted by Whitlock Dalrymple Poston & Associates, Inc.


Houston Hobby Airport

Owner
Houston Airport System
Houston, TX

Project Engineers/
Designers

Whitlock Dalrymple Poston 
& Associates, Inc.
Austin, TX

Repair Contractor
United Restoration & 
Preservation, Inc.
Houston, TX

Material Suppliers/
Manufacturers

The Euclid Chemical 
Company
Cleveland, OH 

Lymtal International, Inc.
Lake Orion, MI 

The primary parking structure for Hobby Airport in Houston, TX, was constructed circa 1980 of unbonded post-tensioned concrete slabs and beams and conventionally reinforced concrete columns. The parking structure consists of four levels and 1.2 million ft2 (111,485 m2). Within the first 20 years of service, the parking structure exhibited various signs of distress, including several post-tensioned tendon failures. Confronted with the possibility of repair or replacement of the parking structure, the owner retained a consulting engineering firm to perform a condition assessment. Ultimately, a repair was performed, which provided a cost-effective and sustainable alternative to replacement.

During the investigation, it was determined that the parking structure was in need of immediate repair—safety concerns led to immediate shoring of the excessively cracked bridge ramps at selected access helixes. Severe durability issues were apparent arising from widespread low reinforcement cover, failed expansion joints, and lack of adequate drainage. A repair scheme was devised and implemented while the parking structure remained in service. The principal repairs included repair of corrosion-damaged concrete, replacement of expansion joint seals, installation of a traffic-bearing epoxy overlay, and replacement of the bridge structures.

The parking structure rehabilitation was completed over a 23-month period in November 2012, ahead of schedule and below budget for approximately $10 million. Based on service life modeling, it is estimated that the service life of the structure was extended by 25 years, providing sustainability to an existing structure compared to the wasteful demolition and replacement of the parking structure at five times the cost.

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