Client

University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Background

When the original Memorial Stadium opened in 1923, its east and west stands held 31,000 fans. In the 1960s, additional north and south stand structures were constructed to fill in the stadium bowl, using an open precast and cast-in-place concrete framing system. With a current capacity of over 80,000 on game days, the stadium is the third largest population area in the state.

Solution

WJE engineers performed a comprehensive field investigation and extracted concrete samples for laboratory testing. The engineers also conducted a structural review for gravity and lateral loads. The inspection determined that the east and west stands experienced areas of reinforcing bar corrosion damage and freeze-thaw deterioration brought about by moisture ingress into the concrete. Additionally, the north and south stands had extensive cracking of several raker beams, attributed to early shrinkage cracking of the concrete and cracking due to alkali-silica reactions within the concrete matrix.

WJE presented the client with a condition survey report interpreting implications for the stadium's long-term performance and outlining repair specifications for a multi-phase repair program. Recommendations included rehabilitation of the 1920s grandstand structures, new structural overlay repairs, expansion joint rebuilding and sealing, waterproof membrane application on the exposed tread and riser surfaces, and rebuilding of significantly deteriorated members.

WJE continues to annually examine the facility to identify maintenance repairs with structural implications.