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Harris County, Institute of Forensic Sciences


Project Details

ClientHarris County


LocationHouston, TX

DeliveryConstruction Manager-at-Risk


Project Overview

This new cutting-edge, forensics tower allows scientists to conduct autopsies and test evidence in a growing number of cases, and offers expanded services including ballistics work and latent fingerprint testing. Key features of the building include three decedent coolers, each of which can hold up to 120 decedents, an indoor firing range and tank capable of testing calibers up to 50 BMG, a 150-person lecture hall, and long-term evidence storage freezers.


Unique Challenge

This 10-story concrete structure was designed with 229 18-inch diameter auger cast piles in the foundation. When we tested the piles, we encountered a structural failure. Dynamic pile load testing revealed a fracture at approximately 10 feet in depth on both piles. After further investigation, the structural engineer added reinforcing steel cages at the upper 10 feet of each pile. We had 229 cages fabricated and delivered without impact to the project schedule.

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