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Historical Constructions, P.B. Loureno, P. Roca (Eds.

), Guimares, 2001

1003

Underpinning solutions of historical constructions


Alexandre Pinto
Tecnasol FGE Fundaes e Geotecnia S.A., R. das Fontainhas n 58, 2700 391, Amadora, Portugal

Sandra Ferreira
Tecnasol FGE Fundaes e Geotecnia S.A., R. das Fontainhas n 58, 2700 391, Amadora, Portugal

Vasco Barros
Tecnasol FGE Fundaes e Geotecnia S.A., R. das Fontainhas n 58, 2700 391, Amadora, Portugal

ABSTRACT: The aim of this paper is to present the main design and construction criteria considered on some underpinning solutions performed by Tecnasol FGE. After a brief description of
micropiling and jet grouting underpinning techniques, some practical case histories where these
techniques were adopted are presented. Finally the main advantages and limitations of the presented techniques are pointed out.

1 INTRODUCTION
The development of new underpinning techniques has allowed the adoption of a wide number of
solutions, progressively more adapted to the singularities and restraints of each scenario, specially when sensitive, old or historic, constructions founded on weak soils have to be underpinned.
In this context, the solutions comprising micropiling and jet grouting techniques should be pointed
out due to their versatility and advantages related to the limitation of vibrations, as well as the
possibility to be adopted in small spaces with low head rooms and restricted access. These techniques also allow the soil improvement, minimising the soil disturbance due to the boreholes small
diameter, drilled with suitable equipment (Bullivant and Bradbury 1996).
On the following chapters, after the presentation of the main aspects of these two techniques,
some practical case histories, where micropiling and jet grouting underpinning techniques were
used, are presented. In each case, the following topics are presented: scenario, main restraints,
main conception and execution criteria.
2 UNDERPINNING TECHNIQUES
2.1 Micropiling
Micropiling is a very old technique initially adopted with wood driven piles, which has been developed in the last years mainly due to the bearing capacity improvement (lateral friction at the
bond length) related with the use of high pressure grout injection techniques (bigger than 4MPa)
and high resistance steel hollow tubes (see Fig. 1). These improvements have allowed to design
micropiles with steel hollow tubes (external diameter lesser than 130mm) to carry axial service
loads greater than 700kN (Bustamante et al. 1997, Bustamante and Doix 1985).
2.2 Jet Grouting
Jet grouting technology have initially been developed in Japan, the UK and Italy. For about 20
years it has been applied worldwide. In Portugal the technology has been applied in the last 6
years, mainly on Lisbon Metro extension works. Recently, vertical jet grouting solutions have

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Historical Constructions

also become competitive and advisable in several and more usual scenarios, like foundations,
earth retaining and underpinning works (Falco et al. 2000, Greenwood 1987).
According to the definitions of the European Standard on Jet Grouting (CEN/TC 288), jet
grouted structures consist of interlocking jet grouted elements. An element is the volume of soil
treated through a single borehole, which may be a cylindrical jet grouted column or a planar jet
grouted panel (Kutzner 1996).
Jet grouting has nothing to do with common grouting, as according to the jet grouting technique the soil is disintegrated by a jet of water or grout at very high pressure (bigger than
30MPa), obtained through the transformation of the high pressure flow (potential energy) into the
high speed jet directed to the soil (kinetic energy) due to the very small diameter nozzles effect,
and is subsequently mixed with the grouting material (see Fig. 2). A part of the mixed material
returns to the surface along annular space around the drill rods or along neighbouring boreholes,
serving for necessary pressure relief.
hMicropiling technology

hMicropiling: construction phases


1st Phase

2nd Phase

3rd Phase

4th Phase

LS

Steel hollow
tubes

Thread connectors

Micropiles
Manchette valves

Drilling the
borehole with
small
diameter rod
till the
micropile
base

Placement of
the steel hollow
tube inside the
borehole and
filling of the
tube/soil
annular space
with grout

Post-grouting
high pressure
injection through
manchette
valves in order
to create the
bond length (Ls)

Filling of the
internal space
of the steel
hollow tube
with grout

Figure 1: Micropiling: technology and main construction phases.

hJet grouting technology

hJet grouting columns (type 1): construction phases


1st Phase

High pressure
jetting nozzle
(water test)

Drilling the
borehole with
small
diameter rod

2nd Phase

Conclusion of
the drilling
operation when
the rods jet
nozzle reaches
the base of the
column

3rd Phase

Drawing up and
rotation of the
rod together
with the jetting
of grout at very
high pressure
through rods
nozzle

4th Phase

End of the jet


grouting
opertations when
the jet rods
nozzle reaches
the top of the
column

Figure 2: Jet grouting: technology and main construction phases.

3 CASE A UNDERPINNIG THE FAADES OF AN OLD BUILDING IN LISBON


3.1 Scenario
The building is located in Lisbon at the historic quarter of Bairro Alto, close to S. Pedro de
Alcntara terrace. The construction of a basement with 3 floors above ground level, inside (12 x
20 m2) and outside the existent building, demanded the demolition of the existent brick and masonry structure, persevering, for architectural reasons, the external faades (Pinto et al. 2000).

A. Pinto, S. Ferreira and V. Barros

1005

3.2 Main restraints


As main restraints could be pointed out: the geological conditions, the surrounding conditions
(site at the historical quarter of Bairro Alto), as well as the geometry and degradation of the faades to be persevered, which had to be braced during the excavation works (see Fig. 3).
hFaades to be preservered: view from backyard

h Localization Plan
N

Adjacent old
building with
3 floors

External
excavation

Faades to be
perservered

Free ground

Internal
excavation

D. Pedro V Street

Figure 3: Site localization and view of the existent faades at the beginning of the works.

3.3 Main conception and execution criteria


Due to the building structure and degradation (see Fig. 3), as well as its tight geometry and low
head room, restricted by the faades bracing system, the faades were underpinned with two reinforced concrete walls, supported vertically by micropiles and horizontally with tie rods. The excavation and construction of both walls followed the Berlin technique (see Fig. 4).
hPhase I - execution of micropiles

h Phase II - 1st phase of excavation, including


execution of tied/anchored retaining walls

D. Pedro V Street

Landfill
-6m

D. Pedro V Street

External
excavation

Internal
excavation

Landfill
-6m

Tie rod
Miocenic
clays

Ground anchors
Miocenic
clays

Micropiles

h Phase III - 2nd phase of excavation, including


execution of tied/anchored retaining walls

h Phase IV - 3 rd phase of excavation


D. Pedro V Street

D. Pedro V Street

External
excavation

Internal
excavation

Landfill
-6m

External
excavation

Internal
excavation

Landfill
-6m

Tie rod
Miocenic
clays

Ground anchors

Figure 4: Excavation phases: underpinning and earth retaining solutions.

Miocenic
clays

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Historical Constructions

4 CASE B UNDERPINNIG OF AN HISTORIC BUILDING IN AVEIRO


4.1 Scenario
The building with brick and masonry structure, 4 floors and an area of 14x32m2 is located at the
down town of Aveiro. The construction of a basement with 1 floor above ground and water level
on a 12x12m2 lateral area demanded, by architectural reasons, the demolition of 2 existent masonry columns and the construction of 3 new reinforced concrete columns (see Fig. 5).
Localization Plan

Peripherical jet grouting wall

Existent
columns
(to be
replaced)

New
columns

Main entrance

Internal
excavation

Belm do Par Street

hPhase I - Drilling works on low head room


for the execution of jet grouting columns

Existent columns
Main Square

Figure 5: Drilling works inside teh building and localization plan.

4.2 Main restraints


As main restraints could be pointed out: the geological conditions, which demanded the excavation above ground water table and the building structure and low head room, as works had to be
done inside the building (see Fig. 5).
hPhase I - Execution of underpinning jet grouting
columns

Landfill

hPhase II - Excavation works

Landfill
-2m

-2m
G.W.

G.W.

Cobble

Cobble

Cretacic stiff clays

Cretacic stiff clays

hPhase III - Execution of new r.concrete columns

Landfill
-2m
G.W.
Cobble

Cretacic stiff clays

hPhase IV - Demolition of the existent masonry columns

Landfill
-2m
G.W.

Cobble

Cretacic stiff clays

Figure 6: Excavation and underpinning phases.

A. Pinto, S. Ferreira and V. Barros

1007

4.3 Main conception and execution criteria


Due to the building geometry (low head room) the faades were underpinned with a watertight
single row jet grouting wall, formed by columns 0,80m, spaced 0,70m. The demolition of the
internal columns was done just after the excavation and the execution of the 3 new reinforced
concrete columns, which demanded the underpinning of the existent columns with two 1m jet
grouting columns (see Fig. 6 and 7) (Pinto et al 2000).
hPhase IV - Demolition of the existant masonry columns

hPhase III Excavation works

Jet grouting
underpinning
columns

New reinforced
concrete columns

New reinforced concrete columns

Figure 7: Excavation and underpinning phases of existent columns.

5 CASE C UNDERPINNIG OF AN OLD CHIMNEY IN LISBON


5.1 Scenario
The chimney with more than 30m height, brick and masonry structure, belonged to an old chemical factory, named Unio, and is located at the quarter of Alcntara. The construction of a
new residential and commercial complex with 2 floors above ground level for parking purpose,
intersecting partially the chimney masonry foundation, demanded the underpinning of the chimney, which, for architectural reasons, had to be refurbished (see Fig. 8 and 11).
hScenario (cross section 1-1)

hLocalization Plan

Chimney to be perservered)

Peripherical
diaphragm wall

0m

G.W.

Ceuta Av.

Fo
nta
inh
as
Str
ee
t

-3m

7m depth
excavation
1

Chimney to be
underpinned

+30m

1
F. Silveira Street

Internal
excavation

-7m

Alluvium
-17m

Volcanic Complex

Figure 8: Localization plan and cross section.

5.2 Main restraints


As main restraints could be pointed out: the geological conditions, the bed rock (Volcanic Complex) is located at a depth of 17m and the execution of a 7m depth excavation located 1m from
the chimney shaft, intersecting the chimney original brick and masonry foundation.

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Historical Constructions
hUnderpinning solution

hView of micropiles cap beam

Micropiles

Tie rod

Tie rod

Level 1
Tie rod level 2 and 3 - Plan

Level 4

Cap beam
View

Tie rod level 3 and 4 - Plan

Figure 9: Underpinning solution.

5.3 Main conception and execution criteria


Due to the chimney structure and slenderness, the underpinning solution comprised the execution
of 16 micropiles with 24m length, including 6m of bond length on Volcanic Complex. The micropiles were caped by concrete beams, which were connected to the chimney structure with
prestressed tie rods (see Fig. 9). The performance of the chimney was analysed through a Monitoring and Survey Plan, comprising reflective targets located at different levels at the chimney
shaft. During excavation works data was collected at least once a week (see Fig. 10).
Dy[mm]

Target 10

Target 8

Target 6

54
50
46
42
38
34
30
26
22
18
14
10
6
2
-2
-6

hMonitoring and Survey Plan


(reflective targets at chimney shaft)

26m
T10

21m
T8

18m

18-Set-00

9-Out-00

30-Out-00 20-Nov-00 11-Dez-00 1-Jan-01 22-Jan-01 12-Fev-01 5-Mar-01

Dz[mm]

Time

T6

4
2
0
-2
-4
-6
-8
-10
-12
-14
-16
-18
-20
-22
-24

7m
Dy[mm]

18-Set-00

9-Out-00

30-Out-00 20-Nov-00 11-Dez-00 1-Jan-01 22-Jan-01 12-Fev-01 5-Mar-01

Dy[mm]

Chimney
D z[mm]

Time

Figure 10: Chimney Monitoring and Survey Plan.


hView of excavation works turning aside the
chimney

hPerspective of the chimney at the end of the works

Chimney

Figure 11: Excavation works and perspective of the chimney at the end of the works.

A. Pinto, S. Ferreira and V. Barros

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6 CASE D UNDERPINNIG OF AN OLD PALACE IN LISBON


6.1 Scenario
Built at the beginning of the XXth century, with french classic style, brick and masonry structure,
the Palace has 3 floors, an area of 30x30m2 and is located in the center of Lisbon, being surrounded by important streets, like F.P.Melo Avenue (see Fig. 12). In order to face the new project, which demanded a 24m average height excavation on Lisbon Miocenic soils around the Palace (see Fig. 14), as well as the construction of one gallery bellow its structure, the Palace was
underpinned internally with micropiles and externally with contiguous bored piles (see Fig. 13).
According to the new project, the Palace will become an hotel and the underground areas will be
used mainly for parking and shopping purposes.
Localization - urban area:
view from F.P.Melo Avenue

Figure 12: Palace localization and view from Palmeiras Square at the beginning of the XXth century.

6.2 Main restraints


As main restraints could be pointed out: the geological conditions, the surrounding conditions, the
Palace structure and geometry and the construction schedule (see Fig. 15 and 17).
6.3 Main conception and execution criteria
Due to the Palace structure and geometry (low head room), the internal walls were underpinned
with micropiles caped by a grillage of prestressed concrete beams, which were connected to the
masonry walls with pairs of prestressed Gewi bars (see Fig. 13).
Underpinning solution for internal walls

Drilling operation

Grillage of prestressed concrete cap beams

Load transference
Underpinned wall

Existent walls (brick and masonry structure)


Grillage of prestressed concrete beams

Underpinning
micropiles

Cap beam

Prestressed
cables
Micropiles

Figure 13: Grillage of cap beams and internal underpinning works.

Gewi

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Historical Constructions

The underpinning of external walls was done with a contiguous bored piles (0,80m spaced
1,0m) wall, connected to the masonry walls trough the piles cap beam. The piles were lined with
sprayed concrete. Due to Palace geometry and the existence of the internal micropiles, the piles
were braced at 6 levels by concrete ring beams. These beams were cast against the ground and
their levels were defined in order to coincide with the final underground slabs. The beams were
supported by vertical steel profiles in order to restrain their deformation (see Fig. 14).
Ring
prestressed
concrete
beams

Underpinning solution for external walls


Contiguous
bored piles

Fontes
Pereira de
Melo Av.

Sousa Martins
Street
(EAST )

(WEST )

Palace
Landfill

Miocenic soils
-24m
G.W.

G.W.

Oligocnico

Prestressed cables
layout

Before excavation

After excavation

Figure 14: Underpinning solution for external walls.


July 2000

May 2000

March
Dezember
Vista da 2000
cortina de estacas e das vigas
de2001
cintagem

August 2000

June 2000

April 2001

Figure 15: Sequences of excavation and construction of the underground slabs around the Palace.

The Palace performance was analysed through a wide Monitoring and Survey Plan, comprising: topographic marks (reflective targets) and inclinometers (located inside the bored piles). Data
was collected at least once a week (see Fig. 16).
DX
[x10-3m]

12
10
8
6
4
2
0
-2
-4
-6
-8
-10
-12

Alvo 5

Andalu
z Squa
re

99

Str
eet

DY
[x10-3m]

eiras
Palm
re
Squa

99

4-Jan00

99

Inclinometers
(inside piles)

Reflective tragets at the


Palace faades (1st floor)

26-Jan- 17-Fev- 10-Mar00

00

Alvo 7

A6

00

Alvo 8

A7

A8

1-Abr-

23-Abr-

15-Mai-

6-Jun-

28-Jun-

00

00

00

00

00

20-Jul- 11-Ago- 2-Set00

1-Abr-

23-Abr-

15-Mai-

6-Jun-

28-Jun-

20-Jul-

00

00

00

00

00

00

00

00

Time

12
10
8
6
4
2
0
-2
-4
-6
-8
-10
-12
21-Nov- 13-Dez- 4-Jan-

DZ
[x10-3m]

Alvo 6

A5

21-Nov- 13-Dez-

Ma
rten
s F
err
o
Str
A5
eet
A6
A7
Y
X
A8

Sou
sa
Ma
rtin
s

Fon
tes
Per
eira
Lis
de
bon
Me
lo
Me
tro
Tun
nel

Ave
nue

Monitoring and Survey Plan

99

00

26-Jan- 17-Fev- 10-Mar00

00

00

11-Ago- 2-Set-00
00

Time

12
10
8
6
4
2
0
-2
-4
-6
-8
-10
-12
21-Nov- 13-Dez99
99

4-Jan00

26-Jan- 17-Fev- 10-Mar00


00
00

Figure 16: Palace Monitoring and Survey Plan.

1-Abr00

23-Abr- 15-Mai00
00

6-Jun00

28-Jun- 20-Jul- 11-Ago- 2-Set-00


00
00
00

Time

A. Pinto, S. Ferreira and V. Barros

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General view of the excavation around the Palace (final phase - Dez 2000)

Execution of underground concrete slabs around the Palace


(final phase - May 2001)

Figure 17: Final phases of excavation and construction of underground slabs around the Palace.

7 MAIN CONCLUSIONS
The demand for underpinning has increased steadily in the last years as renewals and refurbishment works have gained popularity. As example, the presented cases proved how the versatility of
some underpinning techniques can fit the uniqueness and restraints of complex scenarios, involving old and historic sensitive buildings, sometimes founded on weak soils. On the figures below
two comparative analyses between micropiling and jet grouting technologies (see Fig. 18) and between these techniques and the conventional ones are presented (see Fig. 19).
Micropiling vs Jet Grouting columns
Jet grouting

Micropiling vs Jet Grouting columns


0

Micropiling

Main advantages

Main restraints

Main restraints
4 Mobilization of lateral friction
only on competent soils
(NSPT >40 )

4 Higher cement consumption 4 Lower stiffness


4 Difficult execution control

4 Lower end bearing capacity

Axial load [kN]


750

0,5m

1000

0,8m
Weak ground
Jet Grouting type 1

7,5
10,0

Micropiles
12,5
Depth [m]

4 Water tightness

500

5,0

4 Easier execution control

4 End bearing capacity

250

2,5

Main advantages

4 Mobilization of lateral friction 4 Bigger tensile resistance


in any kind of soil, specially
4 Lower cement consumption
on weak soils
4 Bigger stiffness

Foundation ground

15,0

Figure 18: Comparative analysis between micropiling and jet grouting underpinning techniques.
h Underpinning techniques solutions
Micropiling, Jet Grouting
Main advantages

Other conventional
solutions (ex: pits)

4 Lower cost at shallow


depth (less than 2m)

4 Minimization of soil disturbance


due to small diameter of boreholes

4 Easier construction
control of the underpinning elements

4 Solutions depending on
technology (specialist underpinners): shorter works schedule

Main estraints

4 Solutions depending on technical


expertise (equipment and staff)

Existent foundation

Main advantages

4 Small dimension and versatility of


equipment

4 Improvemente of soil
characteristics, including water
tightness (jet grouting)

Jet Grouting equipment

Existent wall

Main restraints
4 Solutions depending
on workmanship
4 Bigger soil
disturbance
4 More risk and longer
works schedule

New foundation

Cross section 1-1

Pit

Pit solution

Plan

Figure 19: Comparative analysis between micropiling/jet grouting and conventional techniques.

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Historical Constructions

In this context, it is also important to point out that underpinning works requires expertise at
the design and execution levels, along with safe working practices, specially when the underpinned building has an old structure and a special architectural/historical interest and therefore is
protected from demolition or alteration. In these situations, considerable care is required on previous tasks, as for example: monitoring and survey, geological and geotechnical site investigation,
stiffen, grout, shore struct, in order to prepare these old buildings and their original foundations
for the underpinning works. As example, some of the presented cases proved how important is the
role of the Monitoring and Survey Plan in this kind of works, mainly as a risk management tool,
allowing to survey and predict the performance of the underpinned structures and, if necessary, to
adjust in time the initial solution.
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
The authors acknowledge the Owners of the presented underpinned structures for his permission
to the presentation of this paper. The authors must also point out that the presented works were
performed by a Tecnasol FGE multitask team, involving experts from different areas, ranging
from structural and geotechnical design to geological investigation, commercial, monitoring/survey and site management teams.
REFERENCES
Bullivant, R. A. and Bradbury, H. W. 1996. Underpinning A practical guide. Oxford, Blackwell Science.
Bustamante, M. and Doix, B. 1985. Une mthode pour le calcul des tirants et des micropieux injects (in
french). Bull. Liasion Labo. P. et Ch., n140, p.75-92.
Bustamante, M. et al. 1997. Underpinning of the Bordeaux Pont-de-Pierre: A First Empire masonry.
Geotechnical Engineering for the Preservation of Monuments and Historic Sites, p. 551-559. Rotterdam, Balkema,.
Falco, J. et al. 2000. Case histories and work performance of vertical jet grouting solutions. Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Ground Improvment, Geosystems, Helsinki, Finland,
June 7-9, 2000, p. 165-171. Building Information Ltd.
Greenwood, D. 1987. Underpinning by grouting. Ground Engineering, April 1987.
Kutzner, C. 1996. Grouting of Rock and Soil. Rotterdam, Balkema.
Pinto, A. et al. 2000. Casos Prticos de Solues de Reforo de Fundaes (in portuguese). Proceedings
do 7 Congresso Nacional de Geotecnia Vol 2/3, Porto, Portugal, April, 2000, p.1055-1063.