The ongoing Natomas Levee Improvement Program is an urgent assessment of 42 miles of recently decertified levees surrounding this historically agricultural but presently urbanizing basin. The work assesses levee performance and makes levee remediation recommendations to reduce flood risk and protect life and property.
This large levee evaluation, remedial design, and construction project required coordinating companywide resources to execute an extensive field exploration program, conduct detailed engineering analyses (including material property selection), and develop and execute hundreds of finite element models for seepage and stability. A detailed, multi-office quality control review process was required for multilevel in-process and milestone reviews by external agencies. The accelerated project schedule required a multi-team approach centrally controlled in the local regional office.
After detailed finite element modeling of geotechnical performance, the client and design teams selected alternatives. Kleinfelder prepared Basis of Design reports by reviewing the historical performance of the levees and providing intensive geotechnical characterization. The field program necessitated more than 1,500 explorations including borings, cone penetration testing, in situ vane shear testing, and geophysical testing. Kleinfelder also provided quality assurance services for SAFCA’s construction activities and evaluated more than 900 basin properties for hazardous materials concerns.
With seven design teams from more than 20 Kleinfelder offices nationwide, a four-level quality control review process was successfully designed and implemented. A fast pace and concurrent quality control process enabled the client to begin construction as soon as possible on the high-risk levee reaches, leading toward recertification of the levees.