Our ability to proactively plan for potential challenges is a skill that we are proud of. Unfortunately, some challenges you just can’t plan for. When that happens, it’s all in the way you approach those challenges that determines whether you succeed or fail.

In July of 2020, SiTESPAN was brought on board to replace two 10,000-gallon underground fuel storage tanks at a client’s Operation Center, located in Energy Park, St. Paul. The replacement fuel tanks were built and about to be shipped from the manufacturer’s Xerxes facility in Iowa, when a large storm with 140+ mph winds came through and damaged the tanks. The damage to the tanks, that were still awaiting shippment, necessitated repairs and recertification delaying the project by one week. With the existing tanks having already been removed, and more inclement weather on the way, SiTESPAN, in collaboration with Unified Services of Texas (UST – our tank subcontractor) and Minnesota Petroleum, we decided to back-fill the open excavation until the new tanks were delivered. Once the new tanks arrived on-site, crews were faced with yet another challenge as the tanks needed to be placed in close proximity to an existing back-up generator. To ensure power to the 24/7 facility remained uninterrupted, the team worked together to develop a modified plan. By rotating the tanks 90 degrees there was substantially more space to complete excavations safely and efficiently. In the end, after numerous challenges faced, the project still met its original completion date with no additional cost to the owner.

As a design-build partner, it’s always our goal to provide solutions that consider all of the possible outcomes, whether that be prior to work starting or in the face of adversity. Thanks to our team, that consisted of Senior Project Manager Ed McGlinn, Project Manager Darrin Prock, and Superintendent Patrick Kincaid, we were able to quickly adapt to the situation and find a solution that kept the project on-track, while ensuring our client’s goals were met.

At SiTESPAN, we believe the modern currency is the speed of responsiveness. Curious to learn what that might mean for your project? Give us a call, we look forward to chatting with you.

Excavation work is performed to remove the existing tanks, located on an extremely tight site.

To increase safety and avoid damaging surround systems, the excavated area was backfilled while awaiting the arrival of the new tanks.

The new tanks arrive and installation begins.

The new tanks arrive and installation begins.

A completed project. A happy client. A proud team.


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