GSA Jeffersonville, IN Smoke Stack Study


Building 66, Census Building, Jeffersonville, Indiana – Smoke Stack Repair Study 

Inspection Findings

The base offset wall was found to have severe spalling and efflorescence buildup due to moisture penetration.  At this base level, the smoke stack conposition is most likely 3-4 brick wythe deep.

The brick unit spalls have occurred in approximately ½ to ¾ of the full circumference of the brick offset wall and is isolated to the outer face bricks.

The efflorescence are the white deposits on the surface of the brick units and mortar joints.  This condition is a crystalline deposit of soluble salts from the mortar that have migrated to the surface due to moisture penetration.  The brick unit spalls are resulting from:

  1. Moisture penetration trapped behind the brick unit and during a freeze/thaw cycle the moisture trapped in the wall expands, causing in the brick unit and mortar joint deterioration or;
  2. Moisture is created when warm air from inside the smoke stack changes phase and condensates within the brick unit as a result of cold air outside of the stack.  The moisture created from the condensation then freezes as it assumes the freezing termperature of the exterior.  The inside of the smoke stack is not lined and there is no insaulation to help reduce this process.

Condition Assessment

Based on the Inspection Finding stated above, repair of the base offset wall falls into the highest concern category or “Corrective Action Factor” of 1A.  1A carries an immediate concern or significant structural deficiency with imminent potential for personal injury, property damage or structural collapse.

Repair Recommendations

  1. Option 1 – Remove all loose brick spall and debris from the base offset wall and pneumatically apply a high-strength, non-shrinking Portland cement mix over the area with a smooth finish.  The finish coating can be tinted to match the existing color as close as possible. BUDGET – $13,000
  2. Option 2 – Cut out all spalled and loose brick and retool in place new radial brick using a high-strength, non-shrinking Portland cement mortor. BUDGET – $23,000

GSA found Architura to be a reliable source and asked Architura to perform many such inspections for them during their 10 years working with them as an IDIQ Contract Holder.