About the project
L.G. Barcus and Sons, Inc. recently completed a three-phase project for the expansion of Presbyterian Hospital in Albuquerque, New Mexico for McCarthy Construction Co., the Construction Manager for the project.  It was a challenge that allowed Barcus to demonstrate many of it’s strengths.  Safety of people and property, restricted access, low headroom conditions, extensive planning to maintain hospital operations and a tight schedule were all key elements affecting the successful installation of the Augered Cast-In-Place Piles.

Phase 1
Phase I began with installing and performing a 450-ton pile load test on an 18-inch diameter Augerpile 65 ft long.  The load test was installed and performed directly in front of the Emergency Room entrance.  Space was limited and the E.R. had to remain open with uninterrupted ambulance access.  The results of the load test were outstanding.  In fact the test pile performed so well that some of the job piles were shortened from 75 ft long to 65 ft long.

Once the test pile was completed, the first pile to be installed was just inside the Main Lobby of the hospital entrance.  With limited maneuvering space and only 16 ft of headroom Barcus installed an 18-inch diameter pile 65 ft long.  Specially designed low headroom drilling equipment was mounted onto a low profile forklift and walked into the main entrance to the hospital which had a height restriction of about 7.5 ft.  Klinger Construction, the General Works Contractor provided support work including removal of augered spoils, re-routing vehicle traffic and constructing special partitions inside the hospital for noise control and safety of non-construction personnel.

Spoils removal equipment entering main lobby area.

Backing the drilling equipment into the lobby area.

Drilling an 18″ diameter pile 65 ft long in the hospital lobby area with 16 ft of headroom

Barcus has installed piles on projects with less than 8 feet of headroom utilizing similar equipment

Once the pile in the lobby was installed Barcus moved back to the E.R. area to install four more piles.  Two of these piles were installed to a depth of 75 ft full length reaching over the hospital, through the roof of the Operating Room using a 60-ton crane.  Two openings were cut in the roof and first floor of the Operating Room to facilitate installation of the piles in the basement below the O.R.  Spoils removal equipment was lowered into the basement through the openings in the roof and first floor. Radios and an intermediate signalman were utilized allowing the Drillers and Crew inside the basement and first floor of the building to communicate with the Crane Operator and other personnel on the roof and outside of the building. The other two piles were installed in the area right out side of the Emergency Room near where the pile load test was performed.  Space was limited and access for ambulance traffic had to be maintained.

Lowering The Leads And Auger Into The Openings On The Roof

Hoisting The Spoils Removal Equipment To Lower It Into The Basement

Drilling an 18 inch diameter pile 75 ft long through the roof and 1st floor.

A View From the First Floor


Phase 2
The second phase consisted of installing 18-inch diameter piles ranging in length from 65 ft to 80 ft inside two separate courtyards with no access for any type of piling equipment to enter the areas on their own.  A low profile drill rig that weighs over 20,000 lbs designed specifically for this project was to be lifted into the courtyards from the hospital parking lot about 120 ft away using a 165-ton mobile crane.  The first courtyard had 3 piles 18-inch diameter and 80 ft long.  Because a portion of the hospital had to be shut down during this installation Barcus had a window of only 12 hours to install these 3 piles. As a result of the limited access, the piles had to be installed with short sections of auger starting with 13 ft of auger in the leads and adding 14 – 5 ft sections of auger as the piles were drilled. Barcus was able to meet the deadline and the equipment was lifted from the small courtyard into the main courtyard using the 165 ton crane the very next day.

The equipment was lifted into the main courtyard area from the parking lot about 120 ft away.

Three completed piles 18 inches by 80 ft long in the first courtyard area.

There were 7 – 18 inch diameter piles in the Main Courtyard area.  Again, using 5 ft sections of auger the 7 piles were installed to depths up to 75 ft. The installation of these piles took just under 2 days and the equipment was lifted out of the Main Courtyard using the mobile crane.

Low profile rig installing piles in the main courtyard with a second crane to handle pile reinforcing steel and auger section.

End of Phase 2

Phase 3
The last phase of the piling installation consisted of installing 5 piles for the Tower Crane right in front of the Main Entrance to the hospital.  These piles were installed full length (75 ft) using Barcus & Sons 60 ton crane.  Access for vehicle and pedestrian traffic in and out of the hospital was safely maintained by Klinger the General Works Contractor.

Installing full length piles for the tower crane in front of the hospital lobby with minimized effect on vehicle and pedestrian traffic.

This project required several different approaches to restricted access installation of Augerpiles.  While the schedule was tight and extremely important, safety concerns, quality assurance and impacting normal hospital operations were the most important factors discussed during the pre-construction planning meetings.  L.G. Barcus & Sons proudly completed the project well ahead of schedule without accidents, injuries or any negative impact on the hospital activities.  The success of this project can be attributed to teamwork and detailed planning involving all parties (Owner, McCarthy – C.M., Klinger  – G.C. and LGB).

L.G. Barcus and Sons, Inc. has been continuously installing Augerpiles for over 25 years and we are proud to have one of the best Safety Records in the Industry.  Barcus has installed Augerpiles on over 200 projects in New Mexico.  Local Contractors have come to rely on Barcus for Safety, Experience and Quality.

L.G. Barcus and Sons, Inc. would like to extend a special thank you to the following people and their companies for their contribution to making a challenging project successful:

Project Team

McCarthy Construction Co
Bill Schuttler – Project Manager
Charlie Jourdan – Superintendent
Rodney Wilson – Asst. Superintendent
Chris Jacobson – Project Engineer

Klinger Construction, Inc
Glen Kitchens – Project Manager
Earl Brooks – Superintendent

Dekker/Perich/Sabatini – Architect

Structural Engineers

AMEC Earth & Environmental
Geotechnical Engineers

L.G. Barcus and Sons, Inc
Todd Kalwei – Project Manager
Dave Williams – Operations Manager
Emmit Johnston – Superintendent