Evergreen Elementary School Crawlspace Update
Division office administration provided an update to the Evergreen School Council on December 13, 2016. The following information was provided:
The structural engineer’s report was reviewed and explained, including several pictures both of the crawlspace and the impacted classrooms. The summary of the structural engineer’s report is below:
- On November 24, 2016 BEI Engineering performed a structural inspection of the Evergreen School building and crawlspace. During the inspection an expert from Alberta Infrastructure and our Facilities and Maintenance Manager were also present;
- The structural inspection consisted of a review of original record drawings to determine the construction methods used (e.g. foundation of crawlspace, exterior & interior walls, building framing, and building flooring;
- The structural inspection also consisted of a detailed review of prior geotechnical reports and recommendations. Included in the prior September 2011 report were the findings of crawlspace humidity, areas of standing ground water, the recommendation to encapsulate the crawlspace by impervious synthetic liner and installation of a weeping tile system.
- The observations section of the report consisted of the following:
- Exterior grading areas surrounding the building was properly graded;
- Cracks in masonry walls and drywall partitions was noted in different locations throughout the building;
- VC flooring in all classrooms appears to be damaged by subfloor movement due to moisture;
- Within the crawlspace, there was a high moisture reading and areas of standing water within several areas;
- Mold growth in the crawlspace was excessive resulting in the decay of wood framing and floor;
- Insulation of exterior walls was inadequate resulting in additional crawlspace moisture and strip footing around building perimeter was exposed with no soil
- Poor air quality was noted in the crawlspace.
Recommendations of the current structural inspection included:
- The opinion was made that the proposed solutions in the past reports (prepared in the past 10 years) to remediate the crawlspace water and mold issues would not eliminate all of the issues present in the crawlspace;
- In order to eliminate water and mold issues the main floor wood framing will need to be removed and contaminated soils in the crawlspace excavated;
- A recommendation to vacate classrooms located in the south wing with the flooring being on top of the crawlspace be vacated immediately. This was to ensure decayed main floor joists will not collapse and cause the collapse of suspended masonry party walls.
- Click here to see the visuals included in the report:
- The results from the November 25, 2016 air quality check were reviewed. Once again, the air quality of the occupied spaces in Evergreen School was declared as acceptable. This has consistently been the case since Alberta Infrastructure Technical Services Branch started conducting quarterly air quality tests at Evergreen School in December 2011.
- Recommendations from the September 2011 geotechnical reports consisted of:
- Regraded exterior of school to ensure proper drainage;
- Did not install weeping tile system due to excessive costs, however we did maintain existing sumps;
- Ensured crawlspace exhaust fans are running at all times (respond as soon as possible when alerts or reports indicate fans are not operating as usual);
- Installed relative humidity monitors for logging of relative humidity levels;
- As the relative humidity was not able to be maintained by fans, we engaged an architect consultant to provide initial design and pricing. Encapsulation was part of design scope brought forward by the consultant;
- Continued airborne mold testing approximately every three months.
If you have any questions regarding this information, please feel free to contact Superintendent, Brad Volkman or Secretary Treasurer, Mohammed Azim.