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Case Study - Glatfelter Hall - Gettysburg College

About this Project

This project involved the renovation of a 56,284 SF, five-story academic building built in 1888 on the campus of Gettysburg College in Gettysburg, PA. Gettysburg College is a private, four-year liberal arts college founded in 1832 in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, adjacent to the famous battlefield.  This project involved the renovation /creation of classrooms, lab spaces, offices, seminar rooms, and student study spaces throughout the building. The newly renovated building houses five academic departments.

The Challenge

This project originated as a health concern for occupants of the building. Moisture was creeping through the walls of the stone foundation in the basement creating high humidity which lead to potential mold and mildew concerns in the building. After several engineering reviews, it was determined that moisture was wicking up through the stone foundations from the water table below the building, a phenomenon called “Rising Dampness.”

The Solution

In order to correct the problem, the moisture had to be blocked from rising up through the stone. The solution necessitated the installation of underpinning around the entire foundation and waterproofing on all of the exterior foundation walls. Underpinning is the process of installing concrete foundations below existing building foundations in order to provide additional bearing capacity or as used in this process, to create a barrier between underground moisture and the stone foundations. The underpinning process includes digging below the existing foundation in narrow sections, removing any rock or soft material to provide a suitable foundation base, and then pouring concrete back up to the original foundation elevation. Once the concrete cures, grout is forced between the existing rock foundation and the new concrete to fill any gaps between the cured concrete and the foundation. The extensive underpinning of the foundations also provided the College an opportunity to lower the floor level in the basement by eighteen inches.

The Result

Although the renovation of Glatfelter Hall started as moisture remediation, it grew to include the rest of the building. The building fire protection plans were updated to meet current code requirements, including firerated wood storefront partitions and a new sprinkler system. In addition, the HVAC system was completely replaced and new ADA accessible bathrooms were installed. Morgan-Keller was able to organize multiple disciplines and remain on schedule within this circa 1888 building. The extra care taken to meet these extraordinary conditions was expertly handled so that the project was completed within the tightly scheduled time frame and on budget. The building opened for students on schedule for the fall 2014 Semester.



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