When planning began for the expansion of Reinhart FoodService’s NATCO distribution center in New Bedford, Mass., the engineers from Tibbetts Engineering Corp. met with a challenge of space constraints. They had little choice but to place a 27,600-sq-ft addition in place of the existing parking lot. The remaining area that had to accommodate a new parking lot was mostly occupied by a detention pond.
The Cultec underground chamber system offered a solution to the limited space issue. About three-quarters of the detention pond was replaced with 442 units of the company’s Recharger 330XL, providing 58,000 cu ft of storage. The system’s ability to handle a large amount of runoff was an additional benefit because the expanded warehouse and new parking lot increased the number of impervious surfaces, according to Cultec.
Additionally, the Cultec system accommodated such onsite challenges as high seasonal groundwater and the glacial till soil with poor infiltration rate. Engineers added a shallow trench to the detention system to meet the infiltration requirements.
“An underground chamber system is a good option when a site comes with so many challenges, land availability being a major one,” said Robert J. Rogers, project engineer with Tibbetts Engineering Corp. “Cultec products have a good reputation, and we used them successfully on a number of previous projects.”
The installation of the Cultec system began with excavating an 18,000-sq-ft bed, laying the Cultec non-woven polypropylene filter fabric along the sides and the bottom of the bed and then adding a 6-in. layer of crushed stone. The chambers were arranged in the bed and fed using the company’s HVLV 180 manifold system.
“We installed the system quickly and easily,” said Sheamus Kelleher, operations manager with Emerald Excavating. “When properly installed, the units are very strong. That allows the installation crew to drive a skid steer over the top of the units during backfill operations. This saves a lot of time.”
The entire installation of the Cultec system took about two weeks. The HDPE units are light, do not require heavy installation equipment and are made with interlocking connections for a fast and straightforward installation. The maintenance of the Cultec system is minimal, required only of the preliminary collection system prior to feeding the bed.