GeoInsight Supports Redevelopment Project at the Site of Former Stark Manufacturing Co. Textile Mills in Manchester, NH

GeoInsight Supports Redevelopment Project at the Site of Former Stark Manufacturing Co. Textile Mills in Manchester, NH

January 3, 2020 By: Michael Penney, P.E.   |   Brian Nereson, P.E.

GeoInsight is proud to be of service to our clients, helping them with projects from conception to completion. Over the past few years, we have been working alongside our clients: Bedford Lot Venture and the City of Manchester through the exciting redevelopment of the former Bedford Lot in Manchester, New Hampshire.

The Bedford Lot is of significant historical value to the region, as the site was the location of a former Stark Manufacturing Company textile mill, which dated back to at least 1897. However, as an effect of deindustrialization, the mill steadily lost business over the next century and was demolished some time between 1950 and 1971. Since 1985, the City of Manchester has owned the property, repurposing it into a surface parking lot.

New life is being brought to this property thanks to the Bedford Lot Venture and City of Manchester joint project. The redevelopment plan includes the construction of a new six-story retail/hotel building in the western portion of the site, a two-level parking structure in the eastern portion of the site, and a surface parking lot in the northern portion of the site.

GeoInsight has had various consultation and remediation involvements in this project, one of which includes having performed multiple phases of subsurface site explorations between 2013 and 2019. Our explorations helped identify subsurface conditions generally consisting of urban fill with variable composition underlain by native granular soils and a sloping bedrock surface. One of the most important characteristics of the identified urban fill was that it contained numerous obstructions, which required careful consideration of what foundation support systems would be best suited for the project. With this in mind, drilled micropiles were selected as the most technically-feasible and cost effective solution for supporting the new retail/hotel building.

GeoInsight’s feasibility analysis considered various other options, including: over-excavation replacement, ground improvement techniques, and driven piles. However, the numerous subsurface obstructions and sloping bedrock surface resulted in selection of the drilled micropile option in order to avoid costly delays and foundation modifications that could have arisen during construction if installing a foundation that wasn’t able to be installed through the obstructions. Our selection of drilled micropiles as the best solution for the project was further confirmed when excavation to achieve the building slab elevation began, as large amounts of granite blocks, boulders, concrete, and bricks likely associated with the former mill buildings were found beneath the subsurface.

We have performed numerous consulting tasks throughout this redevelopment project, with our multi-talented field staff providing a suite of geotechnical engineering, environmental consulting, and construction testing services that include the following.

Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Geotechnical Investigation & Assessment Environmental Investigation 
Soil Management Plan Foundation Construction Inspections Urban Fill Excavation Oversight
Preparation of Soil Disposal Documents Reinforcing Steel Inspections and Concrete and Grout Testing Earthwork Compaction Testing 
Dust Monitoring Vibration Monitoring Oversight and Monitoring of Shoring System Installation 
Pre-Construction Survey Modular Block Retaining Wall Construction Inspections Pavement Installation Oversight

On any given day, a single GeoInsight field engineer or geologist provides any number of field services, from earthwork compaction testing to environmental soil oversight. Our staff’s agility on the construction site has enabled us to meet the needs of both our client and the associated contractors while keeping our construction services costs to a minimum. GeoInsight is excited to be part of this impressive project that will see redevelopment of this previously under-utilized site.

For questions about our Geotechnical Services or Environmental Services Contact Us:

Michael Penney, PE
Director of Engineering/Principal
[email protected] | 603.314.0820

Brian Nereson, PE
Senior Project Engineer
[email protected] | 603.314.0820