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Three Detroit Rail Basins

As a part of Rouge River National Wet Weather Demonstration Project, three combined sewer overflow basins were constructed in the cities of Detroit and Dearborn, Michigan.  The storage capacities of these basins are:  Hubbell-Southfield, 22.0 mg; Puritan-Fenkell, 6.0 mg; Seven Mile, 2.0 mg.  Several major geotechnical concerns were addressed during the design stage.  These concerns included artesian aquifers, saturated soft clays at the proposed slab elevation, the presence of toxic gas and a 10-foot diameter existing interceptor sewer, which crossed the site diagonally.

Somat’s involvement consisted of complete geotechnical engineering and construction quality control for the project.  Of the three sites, Hubbell-Southfield site was geotechnically the most challenging.  The site is located on the Dearborn channel, which empties into the Rouge River.  The geology of the site consisted of sandy clay underlain by very soft gray clay, which was underlain by water-bearing sand and silt to the rock formation.  The site had an underlying artesian aquifer, which had a hydrostatic pressure of about eight feet above the ground.  In addition, the existing 10-foot Northwest Interceptor sewer crossed the site diagonally below and through the Retention Basin.  Construction cost: $80 million.

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