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Loring Park Apartments

Rising 36 stories into the air, climbing its way into the ranks of one of the tallest buildings in the city, the Loring Park (LPM) Apartments building cuts a stylish and impressive figure on the Minneapolis’ downtown skyline. But the apartment building’s penthouse might not have reached such commanding heights if it weren’t for the work Braun Intertec performed underneath the building. The building’s architect and developer hired us to study the bedrock deep underground and assess its suitability as a foundation and determine how much structural weight it could bear.

Our geotechnical engineering team calculated the bedrock’s bearing capacity and analyzed other factors that impacted its performance. This extensive research led our geotechnical engineers to the opinion that the bedrock would support 100 tons per-square-foot—a much greater capacity than the 50 to 75 tons per-square-foot that is standard for the area. This recommendation meant the builder could design the foundations for the higher load bearing capacity saving on time and the cost of materials.

The LPM Apartments project required heavy-duty excavating, drilling, and other large-scale shifts in the earth. At one point during construction, there were four cranes and a downhole hammering rig all operating at the same time within the building’s small footprint. Our technicians used specialized monitoring equipment to test whether the buildings around the site were structurally impacted, which could result in cracks. Fortunately, we discovered that none of the neighboring buildings were structurally affected by the project.

The Braun Intertec team was deep into the ground beneath the building, but we were also a key partner in what went on above the surface. Our construction materials experts tested the drilled piers and examined the foundation designs, the concrete reinforcement, and other materials used in the building’s foundation and exterior. Our Building Sciences group conducted envelope performance tests on the building, including seal inspections, window testing, and air infiltration tests, all of which are critical in an energy efficient building.

The LPM Apartments is a LEED Silver-certified high rise with 354 luxury units and more than 41,000 square feet of amenity space. The residents likely won’t know anything about the bedrock, the foundation shafts, or the materials that went into the walls, but they’ll love the view. And beneath it all will be the work done by Braun Intertec.

In 2015, Loring Park Apartments won a Top Project Award from Finance and Commerce.