Q&A: How did the integration of the site/civil, geotechnical, and environmental engineering bring added value to the Bayshore Technology Park project?

About the Project
Bayshore Technology Park was built in the late 1990s on an 85-acre waterfront property that was a former landfill from the 1940s to 1970s. Located in Redwood Shores, the Park contains 20 office buildings that are supported on deep foundations, which extend through the landfill and into bay mud (thick deposits of soft, unconsolidated silty clay).

Bayshore Technology Park, Redwood City, CA

Bayshore Technology Park, Redwood City, CA

The original design anticipated future settlement of the site due to the degradation of landfill waste and the consolidation of the bay mud. Our services address American with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance to resolve differential settlement between the building structures and walkways leading to the buildings.

Solutions to Challenges
The integration of our site/civil, geotechnical, and environmental disciplines is key to addressing the main challenges facing the site in an efficient and cost-effective manner. Surface slopes and utilities (site/civil), excavation and grading (geotechnical), and clay cap and landfill gas building protection systems (environmental) are all intertwined issues that demand a collaborative design approach.

Our multidisciplinary engineering team delivers constant responsiveness to clients, as all three disciplines are communicated via a single point of contact: our multi-disciplined project manager. Client communication during the design process is critical — especially on projects such Bayshore Technology Park, where the final product needs to be functional, cost-effective, and aesthetically pleasing. The multi-disciplinary team works together closely on each improvement project to develop new designs to address varying situations.

On several projects, our team designed and implemented a unique “floating” footing for the new ADA stairs and ramps. Through ongoing monitoring and maintenance, this footing will prolong the life of the improvements by separating the structure from site settlement. Also, the removal and replacement of existing soil with lightweight fill on many projects reduces the surface weight over the landfill and subsequently reduces future site settlement.

Answer provided by DJ Hodson, PE, LEED AP, California Site/Civil Practice Leader
DJ Hodson is a principal in Langan’s San Francisco office and has over 20 years of national and international site/civil engineering experience. He provides expertise in master-plan engineering, site analysis and design, utility assessment and design, hydrologic and hyrdraulic analysis and design, stormwater-management analysis and design, streetscape, waterfront and redevelopment site projects, as well as geotechnical, traffic, and environmental engineering and permitting.