Pre-engineered Metal Building Distress

N-J was contacted by a contractor looking for assistance with repairs to a building damaged by a snow storm. Although the insurer retained an engineering consultant to evaluate the extent and cause of damage, the other consultant was unable or unwilling to prepare repair documents. The insurer subsequently hired N-J to perform an investigation of the damage and repair design.

N-J performed extensive field documentation of existing conditions including ultrasonic thickness testing to determine member properties. Once the field verification was complete, the existing structure was analyzed using 3D computer modeling and other analysis techniques. It was determined that the existing structure was radically under-designed, and was not easily repairable. N-J prepared several repair options ranging from full replacement of the structure to reinforcing under-designed elements and installing additional columns. Because the client didn't want to affect the column-free space of the building, they elected to perform complete replacement of the roof framing structure. In that option, the existing walls would be saved, but the structural frame would be replaced.

N-J developed the repair design, which included new details to protect the concrete wall panels from further distress due to an original design flaw. N-J performed construction monitoring and assisted the contractor in resolving several subcontractor fabrication errors.