Skip to main content

Building 171 Study. Portsmouth, Virginia.

The study of Building 171 consists of a detailed structural analysis of the building structure and crane rail supporting structure for a large waterfront shipyard facility (approximately 250,000 sq ft) used by the Navy to manufacture and repair large-scale ship components.

A study by the Navy Crane Center of Building 171 at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, VA found that the existing load limits for the approximately 25 operational bridge cranes were not substantiated by structural analysis and calculations. WRA was tasked with performing a detailed analysis of the crane supporting structure including crane rails, crane rail connections, columns, and foundations. The project also included a comprehensive analysis of the overall building structure to compare with current code requirements for wind, seismic, and floor live loads. Based on the results of the structural analysis (including FEA modeling and extensive code review) WRA provided updated allowable crane lifting loads, floor live load limitations, and comparison with building code requirements (wind and seismic).

Services Performed
Project Highlights


WRA performed in-depth, high detail structural analysis with overall 3-dimensional models of a representative portion of the building structure. Finite element analysis (FEA) software was utilized to determine forces in the existing crane rail support structure and overall building structure. Based on the results of the study, updated allowable loads were provided for crane lifts, floor live loads, wind, seismic, snow, roof, and other loading scenarios. The building was constructed over many dec