Thurston County approached T BAILEY INC. and requested that we build a new water storage tank for its Grand Mound community. The job site currently had a single water tank on it, but Thurston County wanted another one built to improve water flow and to increase fire protection for the growing residential area around the job site.
T BAILEY INC.’s decades-long history with water tank fabrication enables us to take the client’s tank parameters, complete every step in the fabrication process, and deliver a fully functional tank facility. The tank we delivered was 40’ in diameter and 55’ tall.
As the Northwest’s leading expert on turn-key tank projects, we were able to provide innovative solutions to the challenges this job encountered. This case study will share the problems we ran up against, and how we leveraged our experience and connections in the region to exceed the client’s expectations.
Scope of the Grand Mound Water Tank Project
As a start-to-finish tank project, the scope of this job was pretty straight forward. We provided the following services:
- Tank design and specification.
- Steel fabrication.
- Site preparation. This included:
- Preparation for the foundation.
- Additional underground piping.
- Stormwater pond enlargement.
- Foundation installation.
- Tank construction.
- Tank coatings and painting.
- Site restoration. This included covering the site with:
While this list seems pretty standard, some of the challenges we encountered forced us to redo several of these steps on an extremely tight deadline. The next section will explain these problems and how they gave the T BAILEY INC. team an opportunity to shine.
Challenges We Encountered During This Water Tank Project
While this water tank construction seemed easy on paper, there were a couple of things that posed challenges for the project. Here are two of the problems we faced and the unique solutions we developed to overcome them:
Challenge #1: Being Forced to Redesign the Tanks
Unfortunately, when Thurston County gave us the project parameters, they made the mistake of listing the tank’s Use Group as a 3, when it was actually a 4.
This meant that our design team unwittingly spent several weeks designing and detailing the tank to meet the wrong codes and zoning requirements. Once the designs were completed, our team followed standard operating procedures, forwarding the designs to Thurston County and ordering the first batch of steel for the tank.
Within a few days, the County reached out to us and confessed the mistake (it had been discovered by their permitting agency).
This suddenly put the entire project on a time crunch — designs had to be redone and steel had to be reordered. Fortunately, the team here at T BAILEY INC. loves a good challenge.
We have an in-house design team and detailing group, which enabled us to move schedules and projects around to prioritize the Grand Mound tank. Our designers quickly modified the designs, changed steel thicknesses, redid the shop drawings, and had the entire redesign completed within an astounding single week.
Due to the skill of our design team, the project was able to move forward with minimal delays.
Challenge #2: Job Site Conditions
Thurston County’s job site forced us to work outside the box in a number of ways.
The first was that access to the site was limited by a narrow wooden bridge and a sharp 90-degree turn which meant large trucks and equipment couldn’t reach the job site. We overcame this challenge by setting up an assembly-line of sorts where we transferred materials and equipment from large trucks to smaller vehicles, which then completed the journey.
The second problem was that the tank site was nestled in a basin, which channeled water from the surrounding area down into our job site.
As you can imagine, this location created a lot of mud — a problem that was accentuated during the geopier rammed aggregate foundation stage of the project. As the geopier team rammed rock into the ground, this displaced a lot of dirt, which rose to the surface and turned the job site into a bowl of mud soup.
Fortunately, we had worked in the mud before and knew exactly how to mitigate this problem. We brought in a trusted earthworks team that was local to the region and with who we had a long history of collaboration. They removed the dirt as it was churned up by the geopier, moved it to an elevated location near the job site and covered it with a tarp to dry out. Once dry, they exported it.
While not as severe as the redesign challenge, these job site challenges are simply a testament to the ability of T BAILEY INC. to complete projects in any kind weather condition or job site.
Advantages of Partnering with T BAILEY INC.
Counties and companies in the Northwest want to work with a tank fabricator who understands the intricacies of the wild weather and terrain in this part of the world.
Here at T BAILEY INC., we have been building tanks in the mud, wind, and snow of the Northwest for over 25 years. Our familiarity with the region not only means that we understand what it takes to build a turn-key project here, but it has also enabled us to build a network of trusted subcontractors that we can depend on to help us deliver projects on time.
To learn more about how we can help you with your next water tank fabrication and construction project, contact T BAILEY INC. today.
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