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Aga Khan Foundation: Islamic Community Center, First In U.S


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19 hours ago, Twinsanity02 said:

What happened to Farshid Moussavi? I thought she was designing it.

I believe Farshid Moussavi is still the Design/Lead Architect. They will more than likely recruit a local firm to be the Architect of Record. Nelson Byrd Woltz from what @hindesky posted will likely be the Landscape Architect.

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26 minutes ago, Luminare said:

I believe Farshid Moussavi is still the Design/Lead Architect. They will more than likely recruit a local firm to be the Architect of Record. Nelson Byrd Woltz from what @hindesky posted will likely be the Landscape Architect.

DLR group is the architect of record.

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There are about 8-10 of these along the fence line, seems like they are pumping water into them. I wonder if they are doing remediation work to the soil? I know there was a warehouse here for a long time, I wonder if the previous owner polluted the ground? Anyone know what kind of work was done at the old warehouse?

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1 hour ago, hindesky said:

There are about 8-10 of these along the fence line, seems like they are pumping water into them. I wonder if they are doing remediation work to the soil? I know there was a warehouse here for a long time, I wonder if the previous owner polluted the ground? Anyone know what kind of work was done at the old warehouse?

It was Robinson Public Warehouse, basically a public storage facility. It was originally the first Sears store in Houston before the 1935 flood ultimately resulted in a move to the store on S. Main that is now the Ion. 

Some background from http://www.offthekuff.com/wp/?p=13755

Quote

The building at 2323 Allen Parkway opened in 1929 as Houston’s first Sears store.

The architect, Nimmons, Carr & Wright, also designed the Sears store on South Main at Wheeler, which replaced the Allen Parkway store.

In 1935, floodwaters from Buffalo Bayou swamped the first floor of the store, resulting in a huge flood sale, according to the Greater Houston Preservation Society. The store moved to South Main a few years later.

In the 1940s, the building was the temporary home of Baylor College of Medicine until its Texas Medical Center building was completed.

Arthur Robinson purchased the building in the 1950s for a storage business, the first of its kind in the Houston area and a prelude to today’s mini storage facilities, said real estate broker Stan Creech, who sold the property to Ameriton in 2005.

I'd be surprised if there was any activity going on there during the years it was Robinson Public Warehouse that requires remediation now. My mother worked there for a couple of years in the late 1960s, and I don't recall her ever mentioning anything taking place there that would be outside the normal scope of what you'd expect at a storage facility. 

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There are about 8-10 of these along the fence line, seems like they are pumping water into them. I wonder if they are doing remediation work to the soil? I know there was a warehouse here for a long time, I wonder if the previous owner polluted the ground? Anyone know what kind of work was done at the old warehouse?

I am about 75% positive that these are part of either a permanent or temporary dewatering system.

Here is a company that specializes in that kind of work here in Houston:

Griffin Dewatering

 

 

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18 minutes ago, tangledwoods said:

I am about 75% positive that these are part of either a permanent or temporary dewatering system.

Here is a company that specializes in that kind of work here in Houston:

Griffin Dewatering

 

 

The sled in the background of Hindesky's photo does appear to be a dewatering pump sled assembly.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I had the opportunity to talk with one of the McCarty workers, he confirmed that they are pumping out the water below the project. He said they drilled down 100', they have about 10 wells on both the west side and east side. Asked him when they will actually start building and he said next year.😳

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48 minutes ago, Fortune said:

Why do they need to pump out ground water?

 

To keep it from sinking when they add the weight of the project and to prevent the ground from shifting and damaging the foundation. Those are my uneducated guesses from someone who doesn't know anything about civil work. The guys said there was a lot of water they needed to remove. I worked for a company that built huge above ground oil and chemical storage tanks and we had to have civil companies build huge foundations to support the weight of the oil/chemicals and the weight of the tank itself.  I only dealt with the steel portion of the tanks and not the civil. Any experts care to weigh in?

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I watched them do this when they started work on the foundation of the Aspire residential tower.  They "dewatered" the perimeter of the building site and drove metal pilings to create a relatively dry bathtub-like space two stories below the surface before laying down a massive amount steel and concrete.  

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On 8/28/2021 at 8:24 PM, hindesky said:

To keep it from sinking when they add the weight of the project and to prevent the ground from shifting and damaging the foundation. Those are my uneducated guesses from someone who doesn't know anything about civil work. The guys said there was a lot of water they needed to remove. I worked for a company that built huge above ground oil and chemical storage tanks and we had to have civil companies build huge foundations to support the weight of the oil/chemicals and the weight of the tank itself.  I only dealt with the steel portion of the tanks and not the civil. Any experts care to weigh in?

Hmmm interesting. Not a civil guy either, but it makes me wonder if this happens on more projects in Houston with deep foundations. I think in general people understand that the geological make up of the earth under Houston isn't exactly great, but most have no idea just how picky, sludgy, plastic-like, and expansive the clay soils are. Or how high the water table can be in most areas.

I wonder if this is a way to do a foundation in lieu of pilings or bell piers, or maybe they have to do both in certain situations. Curious myself.

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I have only ever done dewatering systems when doing permanent below grade structures.  In houston we have a number of foundation options that allow for installing foundations in VERY wet soils without the need for dewatering.  The fact that they have a system installed makes me think they are either going to have a basement / underground parking / or other below grade support structures for the fountains and site stuff.

 

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This happens on a ton of projects in Houston. I did some consulting work for this type of company one time and would compare their list to HAIF. They were not the only company in town and their list usually covered like 1/4 of the Going Up section.

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Dewatering Techniques and Solutions for Construction Projects

 

Dewatering and construction dewatering are terms used to describe the action of removing groundwater or surface water from a construction site. Normally the dewatering process is done by pumping or evaporation. It is usually done before excavation for footings and will help to lower the water table that might cause problems during excavations.

 

Dewatering can also refer to the process of removing water from the soil by wet classification. Wet classification is a construction process that looks at the size of particles that make up the underlying soil in a project site and the flow of fluids through those particles.

 

The right dewatering plan can be used to be in compliance with some of the Best Management Practices related to the SWPP plan.

 

Why Dewatering? 

Construction dewatering is used on most construction sites due to accumulated water in trenches and excavations or in places with an inadequate slope or high water table. In construction projects, this water should be removed to keep working as scheduled or to provide a safe workplace.

 

Normally, builders tend to use water pumps to dewater these areas, but if they are not paying attention to the place where water is discharged, erosion and other problems may occur. It is important to follow best management practices when water is being pumped to lakes, wetlands, or directly to storm sewer inlets.

 

Dewatering Precautions 

Dewatering activities must be done properly to avoid eroding the soil on the construction site. It is also important to choose the best location for discharge, even when you might be far away from water bodies or catch basins. There are multiple dewatering products that can be used to remove sediment from the pumped water, such as dewatering bags. When choosing discharge areas from a dewatering process remember:

 
 
 
  • Water should not be pumped directly into slopes.
  • Dewatering activities should be directed to a wooded buffer, if available.
  • It is important to pay special attention and discontinue dewatering if the area shows signs of instability or erosion.
  • Channels used for dewatering must be stable and better if they have been protected with grass or vegetation.
  • You should avoid dewatering under heavy rains because the infiltration rate is at a minimum and water will move slower or just the dewatering process will not function.
  • Never discharge water that has been contaminated with oil, grease, or chemical products directly. In such instances, an oil/water separator may be necessary.
  • Additional permits and requirements might be needed from the state, local, or federal agencies.
  • It is important to understand the water table conditions in the area, perhaps the underground water is always near the surface, so your plan might not work.
  • Sump pumps are the most common dewatering technique but can handle only a small volume of water.
 

How to Use Dewatering Bags 

Dewatering bags are made of durable geotextile fabric used to filter water by removing sediments. They are used for dredging operations, construction sites, or places with a high water table near the shoreline. These bags should be sized accordingly based on the pump flow rate and type of sediment. When using dewatering bags, avoid multiple pipe discharges as it may cause the filter bag to fail. Remember to manage water runoff properly by guiding it to the nearest storm inlet.

 

Dewatering Methods 

Construction dewatering from open excavation or trenches can be done by several methods. However, the most simple of all is the gravity drain using drainage channels carrying away water from the area to be worked to the discharge point.

 

Other feasible ways for dewatering are water pumping, siphoning, or using large construction machinery buckets to scoop and dump water from the selected area. Earth channels used for dewatering could also be protected with ditch linings, and additional protection should be placed to reduce water velocities and minimize erosion. It is recommended to build riprap revetment protection with geotextile to prevent additional erosion at the discharge point.

 

Preventing Water from Affecting Your Site 

When it is known that a low permeability soil can be found, a possible solution to reduce the dewatering process is isolating the permeable strata from other sources of water. Sometimes, sheet piles, slurry walls, and grout curtains can be used as a method of preventing water from entering your trench or foundation.

 

Although this solution will not get rid of the problem, it is a very good plan to use when the water table is high, as you will still need to pump or remove water from the foundation or trench due to rainfall and water trapped in the area. Depending on the system use, a complete engineering analysis will be required to analyze how this process affects other areas.

 

https://www.thebalancesmb.com/what-is-dewatering-844520

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  • 4 weeks later...
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On 10/7/2021 at 5:50 PM, hindesky said:

The Aga Khan, a direct descendant of the prophet Muhammad, is the spiritual leader of the Ismaili sect of Shia Muslims.

Maybe Aga Khan is waiting for Arc Angel Gabriel to also visit him  with a message to BREAK GROUND!

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1 hour ago, shasta said:

Maybe Aga Khan is waiting for Arc Angel Gabriel to also visit him  with a message to BREAK GROUND!

I mean this is a flood prone city, so maybe its Johnna and the Whale? Oh maybe this will be an arc.....

On the serious side. I think people underestimate just how long it takes for a project to break ground, how expensive it is, and also how proud a buildings owner is of what they built or want to build.

Lets think about this for a moment, if this is going to be the only Aga Khan Islamic Community Center in the United States, I'm willing to bet that nothing big or small is being left to chance. Every single detail is being looked over with a fine tooth comb. Every part of the budget is being examined to be sure each dollar is worth it. Every single material is being examined to make sure it matches the quality the Aga Khan wants this to be. Yeah this is going to take a long time.

Edited by Luminare
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They aren't doing busy work, this is under construction now. Dozer moving lots of top soil, lots of workers vehicles, creating a rip rap hard bottom area for heavy equipment and continuing with the construction trailers.

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This is going to be incredible. I think it's safe to say we've turned the corner in terms of development and quality of life. We're becoming much more sustainable as a city by making massive strides in technology with the Innovation District, TMC3, and the spaceport. We've become way more walkable as a whole and more bikeable. This is just all really exciting to witness. 

Edited by j_cuevas713
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2 hours ago, Luminare said:

Thats actually really good work on the shadow. As someone who uses photoshop everyday, I can certainly appreciate it.

Thank you. I just created a duplicate layer of her. Completely darkened the underlying layer using Levels. Skewed that layer into something approximating a shadow cast in the same direction as that of fence post. Decreased the opacity. Nudged the shadow around a bit to better align with her feet. Flattened the image and resized. Easy-peasy.

 

The direction's a bit off and I could have blurred it a bit but I was in a hurry. Plus her feet still look like they're floating.

Edited by MidCenturyMoldy
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1 minute ago, MidCenturyMoldy said:

Thank you. I just created a duplicate layer of her. Completely darkened the underlying layer using Levels. Skewed that layer into something approximating a shadow cast in the same direction as that of fence post. Decreased the opacity. Nudged the shadow around a bit to better align with her feet. Flattened the image and resized. Easy-peasy.

I do it exactly this way. Probably one of the more efficient ways in terms of workflow.

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3 hours ago, dbigtex56 said:

I'm unfamiliar with the Red Bag girl.
Is she a popular meme or stock photo?

She's everywhere! 😆

https://littleredridingbag.tumblr.com

https://www.nonarchitecture.eu/2020/01/16/girl-red-bag/

https://architizer.com/blog/practice/tools/the-art-of-rendering-7-mistakes/

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

they have now brought on site the big guns.  Oscar Oduno is now on site.  They specialize in deep retaining wall systems.  This is making me start to think that they are going to have below grade parking or something else substantial below grade.  These fools are not cheap but holy hell they know what they are doing.

Oscar Orduno Inc. - Earth Retention Systems - Dallas TX

 

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Yep. The original announcement says preview (of the preview) coverage would begin 30 minutes prior. 

 Who's preparing themselves for disappointment???

 

 

Anyway, my "command + shift + 3" fingers are ready!

Edited by MidCenturyMoldy
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