Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,847
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Road Next to Champlain Condo Site

Excerpt from:



The site in Surfside is empty now, but it remains a challenge for local officials. An engineer hired to help figure out why the building collapsed warned that the site may still not be safe.


Structural engineer Allyn Kilsheimer told Surfside and Miami-Dade officials in a letter Thursday that Collins Avenue could crumble because a remaining perimeter wall near the road could fail. The development was first reported Friday by the Miami Herald and WPLG.


“We believe there is a potentially dangerous situation at the site, where the wall is in danger of collapse,” Kilsheimer wrote.


All that remains of the Champlain building are the walls of the underground parking garage, around a hollowed-out foundation, and Kilsheimer says that without more support for those walls, nearby traffic could make them collapse, with parts of the street falling into the void.


“If the wall were to collapse or rotate substantially, the retained soil under the street and sidewalk could move with it,” wrote Kilsheimer, of KCE Structural Engineers.


He recommends building an earthen berm to support the walls near the street and sidewalk. Otherwise, the movement “could cause portions of the street to collapse and could seriously compromise the utilities under the street,” he wrote.


Miami-Dade County is bringing in crews to help shore up the remaining underground walls, Rachel Johnson, the county's communications director, told the Herald.


“We are moving to procure a company to do shoring and bracing of the walls to assure there is no risk,” she said.


The National Institute of Standards and Technology, a federal agency investigating the collapse, has been monitoring the site's safety.


Collins Avenue, which is the major thoroughfare on the barrier island, has been closed to traffic near the site since June 24, but town officials had said Collins Avenue would be opening soon.


In the letter, Kilsheimer said heavy rain would increase the risks substantially because the ground becomes saturated with water.

The more I learn the more I realize how little I know.
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Honored Contributor
Posts: 12,346
Registered: ‎03-15-2014

Re: Road Next to Champlain Condo Site

I know it's the main thorofare, but why don't they block that section of the street  to traffic?  I know it might be some time before anyone knows how the site will be repurposed, but it seemingly beats throwing good money after bad.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 14,191
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Road Next to Champlain Condo Site

@ValuSkr  I can't visualize Collins Avenue - haven't been there for at least 6 or 7 years- so I don't know why they don't close part of it down.   I just remember lots of apartment buildings and hotel on Collins with doors onto the beach on the east side and the street on the west.


All over our nation as well as the rest of the world, climate change is going to teach us things about our chosen life styles that we never planned to know.


I'm over an hour north of Miami- have been listening to heavy thunder and watching the darkening clouds for the last hour.   Just haven't tuned into the Miami weather today.