Structural damage to city hall basement reviewed

Wayne Schlotfeldt of Schlotfeldt Engineering told the City Council Monday night that the basement at city hall has some structural damage that should be addressed.

Schlotfeldt said the building’s basement runs underneath the east wing, underneath what are the police department offices and the police garage. He said the areas of structural damage include the ceiling of the north stairway basement landing, the ceiling of the south stairway basement landing, the precast double tee structures located in the southwest one-third of the basement and the southern end wall.

He said the amount of damage observed varies from minor to severe.

“The damage is advanced enough that action needs to be taken to remedy the underlying problems before the damage to the basement structural member reflects upwards and impacts the use of the main floor,” Schlotfeldt noted in his report.

Most severely damaged are the hollow core slabs which make up the ceiling of the stairway landing and the floor of the entryway and stoop, he said, and offered evidence of the damage in several photos of the space. He said the degradation of the southern stairway is somewhat more advanced than the north stairway area, according to Schlotfeldt.

His report found the cause of the concrete damage was due to water infiltration that occurred in two different forms — storm water and melting snow at the north and south side stoop/entryway to the building; and wash water, rain and snowmelt from the police garage.

Scholtfeldt said that with the 50 year-old building, the damage has likely been occurring for many years and is not a recent development.

Schlotfeldt recommended eliminating the source of the problems caused by storm, wash and melt water and then removing and replacing the degrading concrete on the structural elements. He also advised removing rust from reinforcement bar and strands, and shoring up weakened structural elements.

He estimated that the repairs could reach the $150,000 to 200,000 range.

Other business

The council voted to table the second reading of a proposed ordinance that would place stop signs at the intersection of Webster Street and Sparboe Court.

Councilman Brian Miller asked about the criteria for the placement of signs. He pointed to reports that there had been no accidents reported at the intersection in the past 10 years.

Miller said he was not opposed to placing the signage, but would like more information from the Traffic Committee on why the decision was made.

Councilman Logan Welch said he agreed with the question.

The council also voted to award a contract for concrete panel replacement at the intersection of Des Moines and Webster streets, and on Columbia Street to Habhab Construction. The contractor submitted a bid of $50,237 for the work. Miller made the motion to award the contract to Habhab, but added the stipulation that work would not begin until spring.


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