We need to resolve this issue quickly for the safety of the work crews. To that end, we evaluated the following options:
- Shore up the slope – Using shotcrete (sprayed concrete) can stabilize the slope but is very expensive and would add significant time to the excavation process.
- Flatten or reduce the slope angle – this is a faster and least expensive process but requires us to expand the tank construction zone to the west, impacting about 10 trees on the margin of the work site.
- Move both tanks to the east – this option would shift the tanks approximately 10 feet to the east. This would require removal of the several remaining fir trees on the east side and would further impact homes on this side of the property.
After evaluating the three options, we have determined that reducing or flattening the slope angle is the best solution. On Friday, we will begin the work to to lay back an additional approximately 10 feet of slope.
As a reminder, we intentionally saved the trees on the edge of the excavation with the intent to evaluate the impacts as we moved through the project. We did not want to preemptively take down any more trees than was absolutely necessary. The risk of this approach was that those trees on the margin might not survive the construction process.
Fortunately, the area impacted by this issue is the final section to be excavated down to rock. Therefore, we do not anticipate any additional adjustments of this nature.
While changes like this are to be expected on any large, complex infrastructure project, we understand that even minor changes in construction plans can create some uneasiness. We want to assure you that as these situations arise, we will continue to communicate early and openly, provide clear facts, and explain the problem-solving process.
We know that having the construction completed as quickly and safely as possible is important for everyone involved, and our goal is to keep the project on schedule as much as possible. As always, feel free to reach out to us with any questions.