Karstic Foundation Problems Sunny Point Railroad

by James W. Erwin, US Army Engineer Div, Atlanta, GA, USA,
Roger A. Brown, US Army Engineer Div, Atlanta, GA, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Geotechnical Aspects of Karst Terrains: Exploration, Foundation Design and Performance, and Remedial Measures


Active limestone sinkholes have been causing problems and affecting the operation of the access railroad to the Military Ocean Terminal, Sunny Point, North Carolina (MOTSU) since 1962. The Corps of Engineers is just completing the construction of a 4055-foot (1. 24 km) land bridge across the entire area of active sinkholes. The bridge is founded on 54 and 48 inch (1. 37 and 1. 22m) telescoping caissons bearing in solid rock. It is located immediately downstream of a 250 acre (1. 01 km**2) lake, which increases the potential for sinkhole development during installation of the caissons. Extensive subsurface explorations were conducted to describe subsurface conditions for design.

Subject Headings: Sinkholes | Rail transportation | Foundation design | Caissons | Limestone | Karst | Subsurface environment | North Carolina

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