Tindall was given the challenge of adding extra capacity to an existing cooling tower constructed in the early 1990s. The reconfigured tower structure would stand 50’ tall and stretch 275’ in diameter. Working with drawings of the original prototype, Tindall converted the design to prestressed reinforcing and updated it to meet current code requirements. The circular structure needed to meet relatively severe seismic requirements, which necessitated substantial lateral resistance from the structure, while maintaining sufficient resiliency to endure the vibration caused by the fan operation at the deck level.
To meet the various requirements for this structure, Tindall created a lateral system comprised of 12 frames, the heaviest of which weighed nearly 80,000 pounds. This utilized 12" beams with round bottoms that required specialty forms, along with 12 fan decks to support the 40'-diameter fans. Each of these extremely heavy pieces had to fit seamlessly together, making the creation of this job similar to solving a colossal jigsaw puzzle.
Given the size and complexity of the structure, tight dimensional control and engineering proficiency in detailing were required to ensure performance for many years to come. After fabricating the 787 pieces of precast, prestressed concrete for the project to meet an aggressive delivery schedule, the structure was able to be erected in just two and one half months. Due to the speed, quality, and efficiency of the work, Tindall was asked to create an identical tower the following year.
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