Currier & Co., is currently serving as the owner’s representative for the expansion project at the PHL Airport, which started in March of 2018. The expansion project focused on increased storage capacity, additional pipeline availability, a new pump pad, operations building, firewater tank, and increased upload capability at the airside load rack. The project total cost is over $92MM, with an aggressive 22-month construction schedule.
This location is a heavily industrialized area, with limited available information on previous construction activity. The site is plagued by unforeseen underground obstructions, poor soil conditions, high labor costs, and a challenging construction environment.
The supply into the facility is to be enhanced by adding over 3,000 feet of dedicated underground pipeline and a breakout station, allowing the facility to have access to supply from the colonial pipeline. A new receipt pad equipped with a dual filtration system and receipt manifold allowing the facility to receive from multiple pipeline suppliers.
Four storage tanks will be constructed by Meccon Industries, Inc., giving the facility an additional 257,200 barrels of available storage. Each tank foundation is resting on over 440 driven piles due to the soil conditions at the site. The new hydrant pump/filtration pad will be capable of 7,200 gallons per minute, utilizing 6 vertical pumps and associate filtration equipment. A new power distribution center and PLC will also be installed in the facility. Two additional fully equipped load islands are included in this project.
This construction effort is very complicated due to the size of the project magnitude of the designed changes and upgrades, and the continued operation of the facility during the construction process. During the construction activity associated with the tie in and new dedicated underground pipeline, it was discovered that the projected path went through a shipyard utilized during WWI. The magnitude of the unforeseen underground obstructions cannot be overstated in regards to the potential of schedule slippage and overall impact on the cost of construction, which has been greatly minimized through coordination and negotiation with the associated contractors, facility designer, and the local authorities.
As a result of the previous heavy industrial use at the site, the possibility of contaminated soil was also a major concern. The overall soil conditions at the site are very poor due to the local flood plain and previous improper backfill efforts throughout the years, which has added another layer of complexity to the project.