A ritzy San Francisco condo tower is now leaning 26 inches and is expected to tilt by a further three inches annually after work to stabilize it ended up worsening the issue.
Just months earlier, the Millennium Tower – a high-end condo tower that opened in the earthquake-prone city in 2009 and sold units for millions of dollars – was only leaning 22 inches.
However, the 58-story, 645-foot tall building is now leaning 26 inches after stabilization work to help stop the sinking was halted because the removal of earth to add stabilizing piles was worsening its slant.
Construction workers were also found to have delayed pouring in grout after removing soil from under the building, potentially worsening the issue further.
The building has already sunk 17 to 18 inches. It was only originally estimated to sink 5.5 inches by 2028, although engineers insist there is no danger of it collapsing, and residents can continue to live in its luxurious apartments.
Engineers paused the project to ‘determine why increased foundation movement was occurring and how this could be mitigated.’
Structural engineer Ronald O. Hamburger has now suggested the building lose more than half of the support beams – known as piles – under the structure, going from 52 to 18 to ‘minimize additional building settlement.’ The holes for the support beams were originally determined to be too big in September and caused soil movement.
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SOURCE: Daily Mail, Alyssa Guzman