The Column - Feature Articles

Can Grand Rapids Power City Buildings With Food Waste by 2025?

Or How We're Working Together With Nicholson Construction to Support a Biodigester

The City of Grand Rapids Water Resource Recovery Facility (WRRF) in Michigan is determined to power its city buildings with 100% renewable energy by 2025, and the installation of a biodigester supported by Menard Group USA and sister company Nicholson Construction is a big part of the plan!

The biodigester project includes the construction of three large-diameter tanks, a processing facility, a gallery and other support structures- but the site had unsuitable ground conditions and required 15 feet of fill. The general contractor for the project is Christman Company.

Nicholson arrived on site first when settlement tolerances for the structures could not be met. To fill the voids in the underlying gypsum bedrock, they used a pre-determined spacing to drill and grout in the planned area.

It’s always great to work with our sister companies on these large-scale projects. Being part of the same larger company allows us to share resources and ideas to come up with the best value for our clients.
Dan Thome, Nicholson Construction Central Region Vice President

Menard arrived next to install controlled modulus column (CMC) rigid inclusions as ground improvement to support the project. CMC rigid inclusions work well in a wide range of soils from clays to gravel and generate a minimal amount of spoil. Part of our work is currently being completed, and another phase will occur in the fall. Once we wrap up, the site will be re-graded, underground utilities will be installed and the slabs/footings for the buildings and tanks will be poured. Overall, the project is expected to be finished in early 2019.

Nicholson and Menard have proven to be successful partners before, specifically in Michigan. They've previously teamed up on projects  like Grand Valley State's Seidman Center and Consumer Energy's Employee Development Center, with Nicholson typically providing low-mobility grouting and Menard handling the CMC rigid inclusions.

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