Underpinning project; owners' views on technology, economy and project management

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Insinööritieteiden korkeakoulu | Doctoral thesis (article-based)
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Verkkokirja (4732 KB, 76 s.)
Aalto University publication series DOCTORAL DISSERTATIONS , 80/2011
The dissertation emphasises the know-how needed by the owner or the developer to facilitate timely and cost-controlled implementation of underpinning projects. The property owner - in Finland, commonly a residents' association - typically commissions a single underpinning project, which means that the owner generally does not have any empirical knowledge of such projects. Property owners typically have a choice of several, sometimes dozens, different technical design solutions. The solutions differ in terms of costs, duration and environmental impacts. Some design solutions are only available for properties in those stages of the life cycle where the foundations are still reasonably sound. In Finland, underpinning is needed in many cities. The centre of Helsinki has seen many large foundation projects since the 1980s. The downtown area has some 120 buildings with wood piling foundations. Respectively, Turku is estimated to have some 400 buildings with wood piling foundations. The projects are relatively large: annually, some 3-5 properties are underpinned, using 400-900 new piles with a typical length of 10m-40m. A database has been compiled from underpinning projects carried out in Turku, with some 200 different parameters stored from approximately 100 projects. The Database on Turku Underpinning Projects (DATU) is one of the largest of its kind in the world. The dissertation develops and compiles a new classification for load transfer structures in underpinning. The classification can be used in the estimates of project duration and costs. The research proposes a new model and classification of damage in wood foundations which can be used in the evaluation of the usability of alternative underpinning methods and in the planning of the timing and the costs of underpinning works. The dissertation introduces models which provide reasonable accuracy in forecasting the costs and duration of underpinning projects. The research provides a new finding about the effect of underpinning on the property value. An accelerated decrease in the property value prior to the time of repair was modelled using reasonably extensive data.
Supervising professor
Saari, Arto, Prof.
Thesis advisor
Kiiras, Juhani, Prof. Emeritus
underpinning, micropile, cost modelling, real estate management
Other note
  • [Publication 1]: Jouko Lehtonen and Ville-Veikko Hyyppä. 2010. Classification of micropile underpinning methods exemplified by projects in Turku. Electronic Journal of Geotechnical Engineering, volume 15, bundle C, pages 295-310.
  • [Publication 2]: Jouko Lehtonen, Antti Perälä, and Jussi Hattara. 2010. New tool for choosing micropile type – Decay modeling of wood pile foundations in Turku, Finland. In: Proceedings of the 10th International Workshop on Micropiles (IWM 2010). Washington DC, USA. 22-25 September 2010. International Society for Micropiles. 11 pages.
  • [Publication 3]: Jouko Lennart Lehtonen and Juhani Matti Kiiras. 2010. Cost modelling in underpinning projects. Construction Management and Economics, volume 28, number 9, pages 985-995.
  • [Publication 4]: Jouko Lehtonen and Jussi Hattara. 2009. Duration of the micropile underpinning projects in Turku. In: Proceedings of the 9th International Workshop on Micropiles (IWM 2009). London, UK. 10-13 May 2009. International Society for Micropiles. 12 pages.
  • [Publication 5]: Jouko Lehtonen and Matti Grönroos. 2008. The impact of major refurbishment projects on property value, exemplified by underpinning. Original publication in Finnish: Suuren korjaushankkeen vaikutus kiinteistön arvoon, esimerkkinä perustustenvahvistus. Maanmittaus, volume 83, number 2, pages 18-37.