With a history of seepage-related problems, East Branch Dam needed a concrete cutoff wall constructed within its existing embankment and foundation. The improvement to the 184-ft high earthen flood control structure was part of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ long-term risk reduction plan. Schnabel provided engineering support to the contractor during this $130 million construction project.

Owned and operated by the Pittsburgh District of the USACE, the dam was classified by the Corps as a Dam Safety Action Class 2 structure – its failure would likely cause substantial downstream property damage. We led development of the contractor’s environmental submittals. As Lead Project Geotechnical Engineer, we were responsible for monitoring construction of the temporary work platform located on the upstream slope. We also designed several temporary features for the contractor, including haul roads and ramps, slurry pits, the work platform slab, and cutoff wall guidewalls. We served as the Lead Grouting Engineer, as well, and provided drilling inspectors during instrumentation installation and grouting operations.