Legion Field Site Analysis and Geotechnical Design

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Environmental Partners was built on the core philosophy that a strict focus on client service through partnership creates added value for our clients.

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Legion Field Site Analysis and Geotechnical Design

Weymouth, Massachusetts

Overview

Legion Field is located in a critical part of Weymouth, a short distance from Town Hall.  The field has played a vital role in Weymouth's recreational history - it was constructed during the 1930's, was modified after World War II and saw renovation in the late 1970's.  In recent years, the fields have been used by Weymouth High School, local youth sports and as a passive recreational area by neighbors.  With the construction of new athletic fields at the local high school, there is less pressure on the use of the field and the Town is redeveloping Legion Field.  Proposed activities include replacement of existing 4,200 seat capacity grandstands and restrooms; updating the football field area to an all-purpose synthetic field; construction of a natural turf baseball field and reconstruction of tennis and basketball courts. 

Development of the field is complicated by geotechnical conditions and historic flooding, caused by high groundwater levels over a 114-acre watershed area.  The settlement of a large peat and organic silt deposits, coupled with the high groundwater, has resulted in regular flooding and the fields being unusable for lengthy periods.  The Town contracted with Environmental Partners to conduct site analysis, to investigate alternatives for improving the soil and hydrogeologic conditions at the Site, and to assist with the final design and construction of the new Athletic Field Complex.

Approach

Environmental Partners conducted a review of available information and a subsurface geotechnical investigation program to verify geologic conditions that had been reported in previous studies.  The results of the investigations revealed a much broader existence (85,000 cubic yards) of a compressible peat material and organic silt, and confirmed shallow groundwater conditions.  These conditions were confirmed to be hydrogeologic problems. 

To improve site conditions, Environmental Partners developed an approach to surcharge the underlying soils, using 70,000 cubic yards of material that was being generated from the MBTA's Greenbush project.  The geotechnical project was then performed in three phases: the performance of a pilot study to survey the Site and collect additional consolidation information (Shelby tube sampling, laboratory characterization, consolidation testing, and settlement calculations); full-scale surcharging (including monitoring of wells and settlement platforms for a 1-year period); and final design of site preparation (surcharge removal) and new Athletic Facility. 

The work has also included conceptual planning for consistency with the Town's master plan for the area, civil site work design and permitting, landscape architecture, structural and environmental assessment, and coordination of the delivery of the materials from the MBTA.  In addition to the surcharging effort, a large aspect of the geotechnical design included the control of groundwater and surface water through and extensive drainage control system and tri-planar geotextile drainage materials.   Through innovative geotechnical design and management of the Greenbush materials as surcharge, the Town has realized a significant cost savings.