Harper College Fuel Storage Tank Replacement
Due in part to the long-lasting relationship Eriksson Engineering Associates, Ltd. (EEA) has enjoyed working for Harper College. There have been more than a few non-standard site projects EEA has completed. One instance of this type of project was the Fuel Storage Tank Replacement project.
The College’s Facilities team deploys a vehicle fleet on their Palatine campus, including everything from maintenance trucks, golf carts, gators, police cars, and even a bookmobile. In place of having the fleet obtain their fuel needs off-campus, the College installed a 6,000-gallon unleaded fuel tank and a 2,500-gallon diesel fuel tank underground over 25 years ago. These tanks were located in the paved area west of Building S & B, north of Building M, and southeast of Building V. This location provided a secure area away from the majority of campus activities and was near where the facilities staff were based.
Harper College believed that the tanks had “outlived” their life cycle and wanted to replace the tanks with an above-ground fueling system. EEA was hired for the project to work with Pepper Construction in a pseudo-design-build project prototype. EEA worked with Harper College to determine a preferred location that provided a well-lit, secluded area on their property while still providing ease of access to staff. Once the site was selected, Harper College and EEA collaborated on sizing needs, equipment, gauges, system modifications, controls, restoration of the existing location, and proposed site improvements. The final result was a 2,500-gallon unleaded fuel tank and a 1,000-gallon diesel fuel tank with modernized equipment and system upgrades. A concrete pad was provided for the new, more “strengthened” paved section where idling vehicles sit during fueling operations. Where existing fuel tanks were removed, stone backfill replaced the large voids as well as a heavy-duty asphalt paving section.
Although the all-in disturbance was approximately 5,000 square feet, the complexity of the project was amplified due to the College not wanting to have downtime. The proposed fuel area was built first, with the existing system decommissioned shortly, followed by restoration of the demolished area in a critical space where many campus facility activities originate. The project came in on time and under budget, much to the happiness of the client.