Rowan University Rohrer College of Business
The new four-story, 96,500-square-foot will include: common areas to encourage collaboration among students and South Jersey business leaders; a “hatchery,” where students can develop their own entrepreneurial ventures; and the Center for Business Professionalism, where students will sharpen their job search skills and employers can conduct interviews with job-seekers.
University President, Ali A. Houshmand, noted that the building will provide the University with space to double RCB enrollment to 2,000 as the University strives to increase enrollment to 25,000 students within the decade.
The soils underlying this proposed building posed a challenge to the design and construction team. With column loads of up to 450 kips, the project’s geotechnical engineer, Pennoni Associates, predicted settlement over one inch if the soil was not reinforced using ground improvement or a deep foundation system. The foundation reinforcement option needed to consider cost, schedule, and constructability.
Ultimately, Pennoni recommended Rammed Aggregate Pier (RAP) elements to improve the loose underlying sand layers instead of deep foundation systems such as 35 feet deep timber piles. The RAP system was selected over the deep foundation option based on schedule and vibration concerns. As compared to a driven pile system, the RAP installation creates significantly less vibration and noise, which resulted in less disruption on campus due to construction. The use of the RAP system allowed for design and construction of spread footings in lieu of pile caps. Due to the presence of a high groundwater table and the potential for the loose poorly graded sand to cave, the Geopier Impact® System was used. This approach eliminated the need for temporary casing to install the RAP elements. Approximately 350 Impact pier elements were installed in two weeks, allowing the project to stay on schedule.
Gloucester County Improvement Authority
KSS Architects, LLP - Princeton, NJ
Ernest Bock & Sons, Inc.
MPP Engineers, LLC - Jackson, NJ
Pennoni Associates - Philadelphia, PA
Pennoni Associates, Inc - Hadden Heights, NJ