Man at computer reviewing subsurface utility mapping report

Subsurface Utility Mapping

Our highly advanced utility mapping services allow for detailed mapping of the underground landscape before any excavation begins on a site. This prevents costly errors as well as project delays due to surprises found when excavation begins – keeping projects both on budget and on time.

As part of our process, we complete utility mapping for our own projects to eliminate surprises. For the same reason, we provide the service separately for a variety of clients across the country. We have never mapped a site without finding one or more potential issues. Utility mapping provides information that enables smarter design, safer and more efficient construction, and easier facility maintenance. Subsurface utility mapping enables us to accomplish the following: 

  • Improve design and constructability analysis
  • Reduce unknowns and risk, especially in urban projects
  • Eliminate utility hits/outages
  • Enhance schedule and budget accuracy
  • Improve safety
  • Reduce project cost

SSM Health

St. Mary's Hospital — St. Louis, MO

Situation and Challenges:

Castle collaborated with the facilities group at St. Mary’s Hospital to develop a prioritized list of specific areas throughout their campus in need of subsurface utility mapping. Several sections were chosen, which has, over time, created a campus-wide utility exhibit to aid in all facilities maintenance and construction operations. 

Results:

In addition to mapping several areas of the campus, St. Mary’s also wanted utility mapping for their Emergency Department Expansion project. The utility exhibit was provided to the architect and engineer for implementation into their design drawings, allowing them to make necessary changes to be made based on several additional utilities discovered during the investigation. One of St. Mary’s main concerns prior to this utility mapping service was the need to comply with Missouri One Call regarding their private utility locates on site. Castle was able to get them enrolled in the Missouri One Call system to proactively comply with the requirement, providing visible representations for their utility infrastructure on site. The requirements were met using the utility exhibit produced from the investigation.

Barnes-Jewish Hospital, Washington University School of Medicine

Campus Renewal — St. Louis, MO

Situation and Challenges:

Castle originally provided subsurface utility mapping services for the Washington University Medical Campus through the first phase of the Campus Renewal megaproject. Working in conjunction with the master planning team at the outset, Castle completed a campus-wide, below-ground utility atlas from existing records as well as an exhaustive site investigation within the footprint of Campus Renewal Phase I. 

Results:

This detailed site investigation yielded a composite 3D subsurface utility model utilized throughout design and construction. Both teams relied on this model for utility coordination purposes, proactive planning to shore and protect critical utilities, proactive relocation of utilities in conflict and innovative design and construction of multiple tunnel systems. As a result of the success produced of this first project, Castle was engaged by the WUMC Campus Renewal team to verify subsurface conditions on 11 subsequent projects for which below-grade disturbance was planned. These projects included new building construction, new utility installation, road work, intersection improvements, below-grade tunnels and footing design and construction. Throughout these projects the WUMC has compiled high-quality utility data one block at a time in pursuit of a master utility atlas that has been field-verified to a high standard of care. 

SSM Health

Saint Louis University, Campus Renewal — St. Louis, MO

Situation and Challenges:

In June 2016, SSM Health unveiled a master facility plan for their new $550 million academic medical center in St. Louis, which included a replacement hospital and a new outpatient care center for Saint Louis University Hospital. Castle was contacted by the owner’s representative to perform a utility investigation of a large section of the existing hospital campus lying adjacent to the proposed construction locations. The utility mapping focused specifically on the proposed routes for the new steam line and electric ductbank servicing the new hospital. 

Results:

After identifying the horizontal locations of all utilities within these project limits, crews performed hydro-excavation to provide survey-grade elevations of each utility crossing the proposed steam and ductbank routes. With this information, the design team produced adjusted alignments and accurate profiles for both utility routes. In addition, large sections of the alignment were able to be prefabricated, saving time on installation and construction operations on site. On top of providing critical information for the project team, Saint Louis University Hospital can use this information to understand and maintain their campus facilities in the future.

Rockwood School District

Geggie Elementary School — Eureka, MO

Situation and Challenges:

Castle was recommended by the project’s civil engineer to perform subsurface utility mapping for the new building additions at Geggie Elementary School in the Rockwood School District. Due to the new site additions, several utilities were to be relocated and several new utilities were to be installed.

Results:

The utility exhibit that was produced helped clarify the overall site design, providing the necessary information to make design adjustments prior to the scheduled bid date. In addition to aiding the design process, the exhibit provided the facilities team with a composite view of how the on-site utilities are aligned and the way existing buildings are serviced.

Saint Louis Zoo

Saint Louis Zoo — St. Louis, MO

Situation and Challenges:

The Saint Louis Zoo is working on a multi-year plan to develop a Geographic Information System (GIS) for their campus that will include everything from underground infrastructure to light pole locations. Castle was brought on board to handle the subsurface utility mapping scope of the project, providing a detailed layout of how underground utilities service their campus’ animal exhibits and attractions.

Results:

The zoo’s facilities team plans to use this tool to aid in the additions of future construction and improve the maintenance and repair processes throughout the campus. In regard to utilities, the campus GIS will provide information such as flowlines, pipe size, pipe material, pictures, videos, installation methods, and repair schedules. Castle, along with other team members, will be working to complete this campus-wide scope over the next several years.

St. Louis Community College — Forest Park

Center for Nursing & Health Sciences — St. Louis, MO

Situation and Challenges:

St. Louis Community College -- Forest Park demolished a large portion of their main campus building to replace it with a new Center for Nursing and Health Sciences. The design team received information from the college about a possible fiber optic utility running directly through their project site that was not marked on the original topographic survey. Castle was asked to perform a utility investigation to locate the possible fiber as well as all utilities within their project site. In addition, Castle performed closed-circuit television imagery to confirm and verify connectivity of sanitary and sewer alignments in and around the project footprint. Site-specific standards required the need for detention basins as part of the new project scope.

Results:

The utility investigation revealed a fiber optic and electric ductbank directly below both future detention basin locations. All utility relocations were able to be validated and adjusted to more accurate tie-in locations. The civil engineer used the utility exhibit to make the necessary changes in design, prior to construction. Castle provided critical information to the design team, and St. Louis Community College has also used this information to manage their facilities, improving their proactive utility repair processes. 

Veolia Energy

Chilled Water — Kansas City, MO

Situation and Challenges:

Veolia Energy created a project to install approximately 8,000 linear feet of chilled water lines throughout the financial and library districts in downtown Kansas City. Castle was asked to perform a utility investigation to gather necessary information for the builder to create a more specific alignment for the chilled water lines. 

Results:

Castle completed this scope in phases and produced progress deliverables along the way, allowing the builder to schedule and prepare for the upcoming construction. Following the completion of several phases of the original utility mapping scope, Veolia decided to abandon the original proposed alignment due to the severe congestion of utilities along the route and choose a better pathway. Over half the utilities portrayed on the utility exhibit were not marked as a part of the Missouri One Call request. An updated route for the chilled water lines was developed, and Castle was again asked to be a part of the team to help validate the new proposed alignment

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