Publication Abstract




Proceedings of the 37th Annual Conference on Deep Foundations, 2012, Houston, TX, USA, (DFI)

Marine Prefabricated Vertical Drains for the Craney Island
Ira Brotman, Mohamed Mekkawy, William W. Wheaton

The Virginia Port Authority and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are partnering to construct the Craney Island Eastward Expansion (CIEE) to meet the dual purpose of extending the life of Craney Island as a dredged material management area and providing land for a state-of-the-art marine terminal. The over 500-acre (200-hectare) expansion provides additional upland dredged material capacity for the Hampton Roads Harbor by constructing perimeter dikes, that once filled, will provide land for the development of a container terminal. In the winter of 2010/2011 the first stage of sand fill was placed, followed by the installation of approximately 12 million linear feet (MLF) (3.6 million linear meters, MLM) of marine PVDs. With over 36 MLF (10.9 MLM) of PVD required to complete dike construction the project will be one of the largest PVD installation project in the U.S. This paper details the challenges associated with the construction of the cross dikes, in particular the design, testing, installation and monitoring of prefabricated vertical drains (PVDs) installed overwater to depths of over 130 feet (40 meters) for foundation improvement in the insitu very soft Norfolk Clay. With expected settlements of 20–30 ft (7-10 m) and 30 percent average strains, the discharge capacity of the PVDs was of particular concern. Laboratory data is presented showing the magnitudes and variability of discharge capacity under different confining pressures in both a straight and buckled condition. The method of installation and monitoring of the marine PVDs in open water included developing a specialized barge and sophisticated positioning and data collection system to verify installation location, depth of penetration and track quantities. An observational method, including material testing, detailed surveys, periodic in-situ testing, and instrumentation, was utilized by the project team to assess the project’s progress and allow for validation of consolidation and strength gain rates and magnitudes.


 article #1860; publication #99 (AM-2012)