Indiana DOT enhances winter ops with fabric storage structures
Tina Grady Barbaccia | March 7, 2012
The Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) has opened two new facilities for salt storage and winter de-icing operations near Markle and Westfield, Ind. Custom designed, engineered and erected by Legacy Building Solutions, the new tension fabric structures provide each location with a salt storage capacity of 3,300 tons — enough to cover several months of winter road maintenance.
“We were storing salt in older salt domes that do not have enough capacity for our average annual use,” said Steve McAvoy, state facilities manager for INDOT. “The new Legacy buildings address that issue. They were also designed so trucks could enter the building single file to load and off-load under roof in a safe and controlled manner. The configuration is much more efficient and has already saved us time and money.”
In contrast to traditional web truss structures, the new fabric buildings use a rigid frame engineering concept, which allows for a high level of design flexibility. These new INDOT buildings measure 104 by 120 feet and feature an 8-foot-high concrete wall. In addition to housing a large salt supply, the structures were specially built to accommodate a fully contained brine-making area, de-icing chemical storage, and a pre-wash pit for cleaning salt trucks prior to entering the maintenance building’s wash bay.
The structural steel building design meets INDOT’s current and future needs for salt storage, McAvoy says. “Our crew members are excited to be operating out of these buildings for years to come,” he says.
INDOT is looking ahead to more innovative design initiatives aimed at additional cost savings, in addition to growing its list of unit maintenance facilities that have received the Salt Institute’s Excellence in Storage Award for environmentally sensitive salt storage.
“INDOT has several older salt domes, and we’re committed to replacing them in the future with fabric structures of this high quality and engineering,”McAvoy adds.
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