Charter Steel began planning to build a new 120,000-square-foot melt shop facility on the grounds of the old American Steel and Wire factory in Cleveland, Ohio in 2002. This new melt shop would melt scrap steel and process it into new billet steel for use in the rolling mill. Before construction could begin, the foundations of the previous facility would need to be removed and the site developed prior to heavy construction. The new facility would require strict tolerances for all phases of construction within a short timeframe.
Work begins with the demolition of existing foundations
Charter Steel hired Lockwood Greene to design and construct the new melt shop facility and to oversee all phases of construction of the project. Lockwood Greene is an engineering, design and construction management firm that acted as the owner's representative and provides support, management and safety oversight of the various contractors working on the site.
Independence Excavating was awarded contracts to demolish the existing foundations, install new concrete foundations for the new building and heavy equipment inside, and install site utilities. Additionally, Independence Excavating needed to install all internal elevated concrete slab, slab-on-grade surfaces and concrete masonry. These efforts needed to be integrated with ongoing building construction being performed by other trades.
Independence Excavating performed demolition and removal of the existing foundations from the old facility. Over 25,000 cubic yards of concrete foundations were demolished and removed from the site, and some were over 15-feet thick. Independence Excavating also undercut the building pad and imported material to provide a stable platform for the auger cast pile installation that would be the building and equipment foundation support for the new facility.
Over 3,800 cubic yards of concrete were used to build the new melt shop foundation
In February of 2005, Independence Excavating was awarded the contract to install the concrete foundations for the new building. Over 3,800 cubic yards of concrete were placed on the new piles and grade walls to provide the foundation for the new building. Construction included over 2,000 feet of grade wall and 75 pile caps. This project was completed ahead of the expected schedule.
In April of 2005, Independence Excavating was awarded the contract to install the concrete foundations for the heavy equipment inside the building. The machine foundations included over 5,700 cubic yards of heavily reinforced concrete to support the massive equipment that was be placed on them and would require strict tolerances to within 2mm. Several of the foundations were very deep, with one being over 30-feet deep in close proximity to other existing building foundations requiring an engineered shoring solution. Independence Excavating achieved the installation of these difficult foundations by incorporating different excavating, sheeting, engineering and concrete skills to complete them safely and efficiently.
Independence Excavating employees working on the concrete flooring for the melt shop
Independence Excavating was also contracted install site utilities that would support the new melt shop facility. The project included over 27,000 feet of utilities including sanitary sewer, storm sewer, waterline, electric duct bank, and various mechanical support piping such as contact water, emergency water and blow-down lines. Independence Excavating performed work in various areas at the same time while foundations, pile caps and the structural steel were being erected. Some of the trenches contained multiple utilities and were up to 18-feet wide and 12-feet deep.
Independence Excavating was awarded the contract to install elevated slabs and slab-on-grade concrete in the newly erected steel building. Over 5,800 cubic yards of concrete was added to various levels throughout the building. The same team of subcontractors and suppliers assembled to complete each area as the steel was completed and the equipment was being installed. Independence also performed concrete masonry, and standard stud and drywall build out for several office and control areas.
In addition to the work on the new building, Independence Excavating performed demolition, remediation, siding, roofing and concrete work on the existing scrap building where scrap steel is stored and then loaded into a railcar that moves between facilities.
Throughout the Charter Steel project, Independence Excavating had from 25 to 110 employees and subcontractors on site, all working concurrently on demolition, excavation, site utilities, building foundations, equipment foundations and elevated slabs. Independence Excavating’s ability to perform multiple scopes of work allowed us to maximize the use of our on-site supervisory staff, project management staff and support staff to coordinate the work, react quickly to changes and complete the project on-schedule. Multiple contracts allowed the owner one point of contact for several types of work, eliminating conflicts where space, schedules and priorities are always in dispute.
120,000-square-foot Charter Steel Melt Shop constructed on grounds of the old American Steel and Wire factory. Demolition, remediation and heavy concrete construction integrated with facility construction.
“We worked with Independence Excavating on the Charter Steel new steel mill project in Cuyahoga Heights, Ohio for over a year. They were flexible with our changes, provided timely and highly competitive pricing, met our multiple schedule requirements and exceeded our contractor expectations. Bottom line is whether we would use them again on demolition, site work and concrete work. The answer is YES, without a doubt.”-Steven L. Cooley, Senior Resident Construction Manager