Engineering Disciplines


Piers, Wharves & Docks

Oceanside Pier Rehabilitation, Oceanside, CA.

NCI performed geotechnical and oceanographic investigations, as well as an engineering feasibility study; developed all design criteria; and prepared the plans, specifications, and construction bid documents for demolition of 1,600 feet of storm-damaged timber pier and construction of a new pier and pier buildings. NCI's recommendations were for a sophisticated timber and pipe-braced pier system that would be aesthetically pleasing, would withstand the 100-year storm, and could be constructed within the City's budget. Key structural elements of the pier's design included timber piles, pile treatment and wrapping, pipe bracing system, and diagonal timber decking system, as well as other features. Buildings constructed on the pier were a two-story restaurant, retail shop, bait shop, restrooms and lifeguard structures. NCI also evaluated all submitted bids and provided the construction administration and full-time residence inspection during demolition of the damaged pier and construction of the new pier and buildings.

Anaheim Bay Modernization, Naval Weapons Station, Seal Beach, CA.

Preliminary engineering designs were prepared for alternative structures to expand the capability of this strategic Pacific fleet support facility. New inner bay and open coast berthing areas were conceptualized to service deep draft ships ranging in size from CG to CV class. Preliminary designs were prepared for a 126,000-square-foot interior basin concrete wharf; a 60,000-square-foot offshore pier; 3,300 lineal feet of steel and concrete trestle for rail and truck access to a new offshore terminal; a 60,000-square-foot offshore island terminal with container crane; and a small barge terminal to lighter cargo from offshore moorings. Alternative designs were evaluated on the basis of constructability, cost, and environmental impact considerations in selection of a preferred plan.

Ventura Pier Repair/Reconstruction, Ventura, CA.

NCI reviewed the storm damage history and exposure of the Ventura Pier in an effort to find ways to reduce recurrent damages. Deficiencies in the existing timber pile supported structure were improved at relatively nominal expense by using a system of steel pipe bracing and steel beam reinforcement of the deck frame at key locations. The pier strengthening design developed by NCI was severely tested during the El Niņo winter storm season of 1998. Damages were confined to a modest level, and catastrophic losses were completely averted. Replacement of the 420-feet outer end of pier that was lost during the December 1995 storm is proceeding toward construction with a new octagonally shaped terminus and includes replacement of the outer section of existing timber pier. This replacement pier work utilized steel foundation piles and steel framing with timber stringers and deck system. NCI assisted the City to review all pier replacement options; participated in a citizen involvement planning committee; performed final engineering design; prepared construction drawings, specifications and contract documents; and provided construction administration and resident inspection services. The new work, which will increase the deck height of the outer end of the pier, will decrease the pier's exposure to wave damage.


Port Hueneme Pier Rehabilitation, Port Hueneme, CA.

This project was to restore the deteriorated portions of the municipal fishing pier. This was accomplished by replacing and upgrading approximately 7,000 square feet of the timber pier. NCI's services included specification of design criteria; structural analysis; supervision of geotechnical, electrical and mechanical design services; and preparation of construction plans and contract documents. Alternative pier replacement plans were also considered. A conventional timber frame design was selected which enabled deck construction to be performed by a prefabrication technique, resulting in considerable cost savings. On-site construction inspection and consultation were also furnished to monitor pile driving, contract administration items, and work progress.

Channel Islands Docking Facility, Ventura Harbor, Ventura, CA.

NCI prepared the detailed construction shop drawings for a contractor to construct a new floating dock system for the National Park Service. Services included modifying the conceptual design layout and framing system; designing a timber floating dock system consisting of glue-laminated walers, interior timber stringers, steel tie-rods, timber deck, and polyethylene tubs filled with polystyrene foam for floatation in order to accommodate up to 100-feet long commercial vessels; preparing pontoon layout, floatation calculations and dock framing/piling calculations; and preparing detailed dock construction shop drawings.


Pier 98 Wetlands And Public Enhancement Project, San Francisco, CA.

The Pier 98 project was a 20+ acre fill site in the San Francisco Bay estuary. The Port worked with regulatory agencies and community groups to formally close the landfill and enhance existing features. Noble Consultants was involved in designing a pile-supported fishing pier and analyzing shoreline stabilization concepts. The fishing pier is an aluminum structure supported on prestressed concrete piles. The decking and handrail are Trex, a recycled plastic material.

Sausalito Ferry Landing Pier - Design, Sausalito, CA.

This project involved the design of a concrete ferry landing pier. Work included the plan formulation of alternative pier layouts, design of the preferred layout, inclusion of landscape improvements prepared by others into the design plans, assistance in permit coordinations, and preparation of plans, specifications, and contract documents. The pier is a cast-in-place concrete structure founded on prestressed concrete piles. The seaward end of the structure is connected to a previously constructed pier designed by the San Francisco Bridge District. Sewer, water and electrical utilities were included in the pier design. Other improvements included concrete tidal benches, patching of the existing seawall, and concrete benches along the promenade overlooking the landing.

Pier D46 Rehabilitation, Port of Long Beach Facility, Long Beach CA.

NCI prepared construction repair plans and specifications for three tasks for GP Gypsum at their Port of Long Beach Facility. The first was the structural repair of an existing 50-year old concrete wharf that, due to time and a corrosive environment, developed numerous cracks and spalls. These cracks and spalls were inventoried, stripped, cleaned and repaired either with formed or injected epoxy grout. There were approximately 150 individual repairs performed. The second task was the repair of 18 existing corroded piles that were supporting the building. NCI used a filter reinforced jacket around the piles and injected grout. The repair methods were compatible with the Phase 2 repairs that were anticipated for the substructure. The third task was a fender replacement feasibility report. NCI evaluated wharf fender alternatives and provided recommendations to replace the existing deteriorated fenders. Cost estimate and analysis were also provided.


Emergency Inspection of Malibu Pier, Marina del Rey, CA.

When two timber piles near the outer end of the pier broke away during an episode of strong southerly swell, Noble immediately responded to the County's request for an emergency on-site inspection and damage assessment. After assessing structural deficiencies, Noble provided recommendations for immediate action and long-term repairs.

Ocean Pier Rehabilitation for the Balboa and Newport Ocean Piers, Newport Beach, CA.

NCI surveyed the existing conditions for both the Balboa and Newport ocean piers, prepared recommended alternative rehabilitation design concepts, and prepared the final design, drawings, specifications, contract documents and cost estimates for the selected rehabilitation design concept at each pier, and engineering support during construction bidding. NCI's design work included utility replacement for lighting, electrical systems, communication systems, potable water, fire protection systems, gas lines and sewer lines.

The city's two municipal piers were rehabilitated to replace foundation piles, bracing, decking, miscellaneous hardware, utilities, and other amenities. Over 40,000 square feet of deteriorated concrete pavement and 60-year old timber sub-decking was replaced with a new structural concrete section. Utilities were replaced and rerouted into top-side utility trenches, and a new guardrail was detailed for the Balboa Pier. The contract documents were prepared to minimize interruption to affected lessees.

MARAD Reserve Fleet Pier, Suisun Bay, San Francisco, CA.

NCI performed a value engineering analysis for a 19-foot wide by 1,400-foot long concrete pier for the low bid contractor to assess the use of an alternative deck system. The original design consisted of an 8-inch thick cast-in-place concrete deck slab supported by two 42-inch ASSHTO girders atop a cast-in-place cap and 24-inch square three pile bent. The cap and deck were composed of lightweight concrete, while the piles and girders were conventional weight structural concrete. NCI designed a pre-cast, pre-stressed lightweight concrete double tee deck system to replace the ASSHTO girders and CIP deck, and also made design modifications to the pile cap, shear walls, and seismic restraint canles/anchors. The owner, the Army Corps of Engineers, accepted NCI's value engineered alternative design. CalTrans bridge design manuals were utilized in the value engineering re-design.


Mission Creek Park Small Boat Launch Facility, San Francisco, CA.

Work involved the design, preparation of contract documents, and construction inspection of an ADA accessible small boat (predominately kayak) launching facility. The facility consists of a steel pile supported steel framed access pier with Ipe (South American hardwood, sustainably harvested) decking, a guardrail and gate; a 6-foot wide by 80-foot long aluminum gangway(lighted); 4 steel pipe anchor piles; and a low freeboard (8"-10") dock 12 feet wide by 52 feet long. The low freeboard dock was designed with cedar glulam beams laying flat, connected directly to foam filled HDPE flotation pontoons. The dock had to be angled to account for the narrow channel and allow boats to be berthed on the opposite side of channel. A finite element model was used to: 1) determine the buoyancy required to obtain a level dock and meet the heavy load from the gangway and obtain a low freeboard during dead load conditions and not sink the dock during live load conditions; and 2) determine the stresses and design for the connection frame at the angle in the dock, and connections between the cedar glulam sections.


Sacramento Landing Pier Replacement, Sacramento, CA.

Noble Consultants' was initially hired to perform an inspection of an existing pier and recommend minimal repair methods to maintain operation of the facility for Park Service boats. The pier was significantly deteriorated and NCI stated in their inspection report that failure of the structure could occur at any time. Within three months a section of the pier collapsed. An amendment was then issued for NCI to perform design of a rehabilitation that would meet budgetary constraints. The result of the engineering analysis was to recommend replacement of the longest outer section of the pier and rehabilitation of the section connecting to shore. To control costs, a combination of new two pile and one pile bents were incorporated in the design of the replacement section. Concrete footings with timber posts and screw jacks were utilized in the rehabilitated section in place of more costly new driven piles. NCI prepared the final design, contract documents (plans and specifications), and engineer's cost estimate for the replacement. Construction bids that were submitted were within the available funds and the engineer's estimate. NCI was then hired to perform construction engineering services and provide resident inspection.


Pt. Reyes Lifeboat Marine Railway Replacement, Pt. Reyes, CA.

Noble Consultants' was hired to perform construction engineering services for the rehabilitation of the Lifeboat Marine Railway located within Drakes Bay, 30 miles north of San Francisco. This facility is a National Historic Structure that was used in the late 1800's and 1900's to rescue mariners in danger along the California Coast. The rehabilitation, which was designed by another engineer, involved complete replacement of the pier and railway extending out from the boat house. This included replacement of timber piles, framing, decking and marine rails. NCI was responsible to review and approve construction submittals, provide engineering expertise to the Owner, perform engineering of design changes, review and comment on contractor submitted change orders, conduct engineering site visits, provide resident inspection, perform diver inspection of underwater connections, and prepare asbuilt drawings.


US Berkeley Rowing Dock, Oakland, CA.

Noble Consultants designed the 15-foot wide by 175-foot long dock for the University of California Berkeley crew rowing team. The facility is located in the Alameda Estuary. The dock is a low freeboard (8-10) dock for efficient launching of rowing shells. The dock consists of cedar glulam beams laying flat directly connected to foam filled HDPE flotation pontoons. The four glulam deck sections were connected with cedar members positioned between the flotation units and through bolted to the deck. Two 29-foot wide gangways (designed by others) provide access to the dock. Variations in flotation pontoon depths were required to provide a level platform under dead load conditions, including the heavy gangways, and to provide an acceptable launching platform under varying live load conditions.


Burton Chace Park Sea Scout Docks, Marina del Rey, CA.

Noble Consultants Inc. maintains an open-ended contract with Los Angeles County; Department of Beaches and Harbor to serve as Harbor Engineer for review and approval of planning, designs and construction. 

NCI performed underwater and above water inspection services for dock improvement work and gangway installation at the Burton Chace Park – Sea Scout Docks in Marina Del Rey, CA.  These inspection services required coordination between the County Building and Safety, the contractors performing the dock rehabilitation, and the design engineers to insure that construction was performed in accordance with approved construction plans.  Construction inspection consisted of evaluating the consistency of the plans to confirm that the plan and layout drawings were accurately reflected in the details, sections, and evaluation.  NCI compared the plans with the specifications, looking for gaps and/or conflicts, which were immediately reported to the Department. 


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