Johnson Hall will be the new home for the School of Chemical, Biological, and Environmental Engineering (CBEE) in the College of Engineering on the Corvallis Campus of Oregon State University (OSU). Construction began in April 2015 with occupancy expected for the Fall 2016 term. The new, 3-story, ±60,000 SF building is located south of NW Monroe Avenue, between SW Park Terrace Place and SW 26th Street. The project also includes pedestrian improvements and new concrete and asphalt parking.
Foundation Engineering, Inc. completed a geotechnical investigation and site specific seismic hazard study for the project. Our scope of work included exploratory drilling and seismic cone penetrometer testing (SCPT), laboratory testing, engineering analyses, and development of recommendations for site preparation and foundation design and construction. The seismic hazard study fulfilled the requirements presented in the 2010 Oregon Structural Specialty Code (OSSC 2010) for site‑specific seismic hazard reports for special‑occupancy structures.
Loose, saturated silty sand is present beneath the site and was initially identified as a potential liquefaction hazard. However, subsequent laboratory testing and results of the SCPT suggested the subsurface soils are resistant to seismically‑induced liquefaction, primarily due to the plasticity of the silt. Therefore, the risk of liquefaction‑induced bearing capacity failure and ground settlement was deemed to be low and no mitigation was required. Therefore, we designed the structure support using conventional spread footing foundations resulting in a substantial savings over deep foundations or ground modification. The project was completed on time and within budget.