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The Blue & Gray Press | March 24, 2019

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Construction continues, noise levels increase


A louder phase of construction around the new Campus Center began on Nov. 4 and will continue through Dec. 3.

This phase consists of the installation of a structural support system. The construction will be “a moderately noisy operation,” according to a press release on EagleEye.

According to Les Johnson, capital outlay project manager of facility services, this process is known in the industry as “geo-piers.”

The process is a method of increasing the bearing strength of the earth under the building footings. This will make the building less likely to shift over time, according to Johnson.

“It can be thought of as a minimally invasive surgery in that it resembles a hypodermic needle modified with a one-way valve being vibrated into the ground,” said Johnson. “The needle, or mandrel, is vibrated to a pre-determined depth, then raised about three feet to allow stone in the mandrel to flow into the vacant space.”

The mandrel is vibrated downward again to compress the stone into the void. The process continues to repeat until the mandrel is returned to the ground surface, according to Johnson.

“Students living near the Campus Center will hear and feel the vibration of the mandrel rig, but the noise is quite moderate,” said Johnson.

The process resembles steps used in the construction of Eagle Village and the Information and Technology Convergence Center.

The work will remain within the regular hours of operation, Monday through Friday 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.