As you might imagine, repair of historic structures requires an expertise that is uncommon among scaffolding companies. Most of these companies offer the equipment, but not the engineers, who can analyze your unique repair needs and recommend exactly the scaffolding that is needed to get the job done. It is most helpful to use a supplier who can furnish both the equipment and engineering expertise.
In the Washington DC area, there are numerous historical landmarks and bridges that require both of these assets to complete repairs. For example, restoration of the Lincoln Memorial carried with it the challenge of making sure that scaffolding did not touch the surface. Scaffolding engineering expertise was necessary to enable workers to perform repairs and restoration safely from adjacent supports. Another example is repair of the Ben Franklin Bridge, which was built almost 90 years ago. Specialized scaffolding engineering was required to erect scaffolding that could withstand winds of 100 miles per hour. The scaffolding also had to be installed over active bridge traffic. Finally, engineers had to figure out how to deliver the equipment on barges.
Also requiring precise scaffolding engineering was the renovation of the Arts and Industry Building that housed the original Smithsonian Institution beginning in 1881. With a Victorian appearance, this building has an unconventional shape that presented a number of engineering challenges for the scaffolding. The skeleton structure had to withstand high winds, yet could not anchor to the building’s façade. Also, the scaffolding had to allow for load transfers and had to span many existing trenches.
Renovations always present complex challenges. When you add the complexities of working on national landmarks or bridges that span high above the water, you need engineering expertise that is relatively uncommon. It is most efficient to find that expertise within your scaffolding provider. The engineers know their equipment and are in the best position to make sure that it can handle all of the constraints required in the repairs.