GMS engineers departed for Mexico City on Monday to be joined by remaining members of the Applied Technology Council (ATC) reconnaissance team reviewing the aftermath of the 9/19/2017 earthquake. The goal of this reconnaissance mission is to perform detailed assessments of reinforced concrete structures with all levels of damage. The reconnaissance will focus on identifying the likely cause of collapse in concrete buildings that performed poorly, and the likely cause of good performance in non-collapsed buildings in the immediate vicinity.
Mexico is one of the world’s most seismically active regions, sitting atop several intersecting tectonic plates. On September 19, 2017, a magnitude 7.1 earthquake hit the Greater Mexico City area killing 370 people and collapsing 40 buildings. The quake occurred on the 32nd anniversary of the 1985 Mexico City earthquake, which killed around 10,000 people. The 1985 quake was commemorated, and a national earthquake drill was held, at 11 a.m. local time, just two hours before the 2017 earthquake. Twelve days earlier, the even larger 2017 Chiapas earthquake struck 400 miles away, off the coast of the state of Chiapas.
In support of ongoing U.S. Government-funded research and development projects in earthquake engineering, the Applied Technology Council (ATC) Endowment Fund is sponsoring a team of experts to investigate the performance of buildings in Mexico City following the event.
This new 6-story commercial building in the SoHo Cast Iron Historic District replaces a two-story taxpayer building. The new steel framed structure, designed by BKSK Architects, features a terra cotta rain screen and glass curtain wall facade system that transitions along the building perimeter from punched windows representative of an earlier masonry era, to a more open open frame emblematic of SoHo’s later cast-iron era. The entire 52,000 square foot building is leased by Nike. According to the New York Times, “design fans should soon be recognizing it as one of the most exciting and intelligent structures to be built for decades, anywhere.”
GMS provided structural engineering services for this 440,000 SF interior renovation and re-stack of 9 floors in the McGraw-Hill Building at 1221 Avenue of the Americas. Project included structural modifications and reinforcement for a monumental stairway, health club, full service kitchen and dining area, UPS and data center, as well as roof dunnage and shaft openings for new HVAC equipment.
The Woolworth building will be the first “Building of the Day” celebrating this year’s Archtober. Archtober (ärk’tōbər) is New York City’s Architecture and Design Month, the annual festival of architecture tours, lectures, films, and exhibitions taking place during October.
In buildings, Mass Concrete is frequently used for mat foundations, blast resistant walls, transfer girders or deep beams. However, there are no hard and fast rules to determine if your concrete element qualifies.
There are approximately 50,000 buildings on the 22.8 square mile island of Manhattan and the majority of construction occurs in densely built areas only a few feet from occupied buildings. When your neighbor builds or renovates, there may be residual effects on your property.
Jonathan Hernandez, GMS Partner, was inducted as the President-Elect for the Structural Engineers Association of New York (SEAoNY) for 2017-2018. The ceremony occurred during SEAoNY’s Annual Meeting, held at the Center For Architecture in New York on September 14, 2017.
GMS engineers and inspectors refreshed their knowledge of welding and bolting inspection procedures at a seminar led by Albert Wong, senior inspector at GMS. The lecture covered types of bolts, welds, connections, and failures, as well as inspection requirements for maintaining quality control of construction.
For over a decade, GMS has served as the Woolworth Building’s structural engineer. Presently, the upper portion of this landmark (30th Floor-60th Floor) is being converted to residential apartments designed by Thierry Despont.