"Curbed should get their facts straight before they sow more confusion. In the firstarticle on this they stated some of the reasons the building was sinking were because it was a concrete and not a steel-framed building, and that it was located on fill. Concrete or steel or wood or plastic doesn’t matter – all that matters is that the foundation be designed to carry the required load. And while the foundation design will change depending on the soil conditions where the building is located, in the end the only relevant item is the load of the building compared to the capacity of the design.
It’s easy to simplify this whole thing into "oh my god they didn’t drill into bedrock!" but that’s a very unsophisticated viewpoint. In Ye Olden Days of skyscrapers, say Manhattan c. 1900, sure, you had to reach bedrock because the building foundations were very simple and didn’t really have a way to deliver the load other than to sit on rock. But that is not the case these days. Piles can develop the necessary capacity via sitting on hard rock, but they can also do so via friction, or via giant concrete rafts that spread the load, or they can treat the soils to improve them via injection, etc. The question here is whether there was a mistake in calculating the loads or the foundation design?
As for TransBay, that’s really a question of timing and how deep their excavation was. If Millennium had piles that were 80 ft under a raft that was presumably under a couple basements, did TransBay really affect it if it was only excavating 65 ft deep? That’s not deep enough to affect the layer under all of those piles. The story doesn’t wash, and the timing really makes the excuse suspect.
Might be a good idea for Curbed to look up the Harmon in Las Vegas, because that is likely where we are headed – a fundamental design mistake that cannot be corrected."
This will be fun. ..The lawyers and forensic engineers will make careers on this building...
Let the games begin...https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Harmon