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Richmond Federal Building. Richmond, Virginia.
Emergency design and assessment services where needed to determine the source of failure after stone fell from this twelve-story government office building.
Built in 1959, the Richmond Federal Building received several previous facade renovations. When the bottom of a limestone panel broke off and fell to the ground, WRA responded to the emergency by getting the appropriate staff to the site within 24 hours to inspect the panels. While on site, WRA noticed other panels out of alignment. Before other panels could crack and fall, WRA recommended their removal. Through the assessment of conditions behind the removed stone and past renovation drawings, WRA determined that the failure was caused by a prior renovation’s lack of steel supports. This caused extra weight to bear upon certain panels. Thermal expansion and contraction caused them to shift and crack.
Design of exterior façade repair included new stainless steel brackets to support upper stone courses before new limestone panels were installed.
Loose stone panels were reset with mortar matching the original mix, and new supports were made of stainless steel to ensure compatibility with the original and renovated portions of the building.