ICRI 2006 Project Award Winner
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Award of Excellence: Parking Structures Category

Grand Rapids Community College North Building Restoration
grey line

Grand Rapids, Michigan

Submitted by Carl Walker, Inc.

Grand Rapids Community College North Building

Grand Rapids Community College
Grand Rapids, Michigan

Project Engineer/

Carl Walker, Inc.
Kalamazoo, Michigan

Repair Contractor
Davis Construction, Inc.
Grand Rapids, Michigan

Material Suppliers/

Consumers Concrete
Kentwood, Michigan

LymTal International
Lake Orion, Michigan

The Grand Rapids Community College (GRCC) North Building is a seven-story building constructed in 1970. The slab-on-grade level and the first supported level serve as a parking structure for staff parking, with the remaining upper levels of the facility serving as classroom space. 

The supported parking level consists of a 10-in. (25 cm) two-way conventionally reinforced concrete slab. The east end of the parking structure is underground. The supported slab serves as lateral support for the east basement wall. 

The structure had been exposed to chloride contamination from road salts and moisture that had progressively deteriorated the structural integrity of the supported slab. After consideration of the economics of various repair options, GRCC selected full slab replacement. Although this option had higher initial construction costs and presented significant construction challenges, it offered numerous benefits, including removal of all chloride-contaminated concrete, a new slab with more durable concrete, improved drainage, and lower maintenance cost. Other components of the selected repair option included new lighting, new fire protection, new plumbing, new paint, a heavy-duty low-odor deck coating system, new traffic control equipment, and new signage. 

Special features on this project include:

  • Complexity of full slab removal under occupied space requiring bracing of basement walls/columns and special dust/fume and noise controls;
  • Unique removal methods included the use of remote-controlled robots; and
  • Speed of construction to complete the project during the school break. 

The construction schedule for this restoration project lasted 6 months with a construction cost of $1.1 million.

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