Shallow Depths and TxDot: A Case for R-Tanks
Due to strict detention requirements in the City of Houston and Harris County, problems can arise very quickly for groups working through the preliminary engineering stage of a project. With added issues such as a particularly shallow outfall, and TXDOT approval, due diligence is a prerequisite to beginning any such project. One example of a project in which performing due diligence in the beginning stages saved both time and energy was a project presented to Construction EcoServices and a partnering engineering firm. The site needed a solution that could work in a 3.5’ section and detain 21,140 cubic feet in a very condensed area which also happened to outfall into a TXDOT right of way.
The site itself had a multitude of other constraints considering the total site square footage was 20,898 sq. ft. which is over a 1 to 1 ratio of cubic footage to square footage of storage. With a building foot print close to 10,000 square feet and a reverse C shaped parking lot, R-Tank was the most logical solution.
The reasoning behind using R-Tanks to solve this difficult detention requirement is multifaceted. The R-Tank is highly modular due to its core structure, which allows the system to be shaped as if you had a difficult Tetris layout.
Secondly the R-Tank single stack modules can work in a 3.35’ section from the bottom of the system design to the top of finished grade; accommodating a 3” leveled base consisting of clean fill or stone, 17” module, and 14” of sand or #57 clean angular crushed stone, and 6” of pavement. By having such a minimal height constraint, the R-Tank system can accomplish a tremendous amount of cubic foot storage in a very shallow section while being gravity fed.
Most importantly, designers can place R-Tank on a set of plans with confidence that it is a TxDOT approved product line which can streamline the approval process. Anyone who has dealt with TxDOT knows that missing an approval can significantly affect the time line of the project, which could result in months added to the permit process.
So remember, the next time that you have a difficult site with a shallow outfall, tight site constraints, and one that also requires TxDOT approval, think outside the box; or in R-Tank’s case, think inside the box and set your project up for success.
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