Tilt-up and Federal Progressive Collapse Avoidance

Marine Corps Support Facility

You’ve probably seen footage of a building being torn down and watched it collapse floor by floor.  To avoid this from happening to an occupied building, the federal government has implemented progressive collapse avoidance requirements. Tilt-up construction is a more durable and cost-effective solution for meeting these requirements compared to steel-framed designs.

Defense Medical Logistics Center

Using tilt-up for progressive collapse avoidance has several advantages:

  • Provides a solid exterior surface to meet blast resiliency requirements
  • Delivers the inherent strength of concrete tilt-up panels for overall durability
  • Minimizes cost to fix a damaged area compared to a steel-framed building
  • Eliminates perimeter steel leading to greater interior space planning flexibility

Veteran’s Affairs Office

Progressive collapse avoidance applies to all new and existing Department of Defense (DoD) facilities of three stories or higher, as well as any commercial facility occupied by more than 25 percent DoD personnel. To avoid progressive collapse requirements, developers might only build one- and two-story facilities. But, by using tilt-up, developers can maximize the leasable space density of their sites by building higher.

To evaluate LJB’s tilt-up design approach for progressive collapse avoidance, CON/STEEL Alliance™ member Morgan-Keller engaged Hinman Consulting Engineers, a recognized expert in progressive collapse avoidance design and blast analysis, to evaluate tilt-up based on LJB’s design approach. Hinman reviewed the tilt-up solution and calculations indicating that this design approach is a viable solution for meeting progressive collapse avoidance requirements.

LJB recently designed several tilt-up projects to meet progressive collapse avoidance requirements and protect DoD workers including: Defense Medical Logistics Center – Ft. Detrick, Md.; Marine Corps Support Facility – New Orleans, La.; and Veteran’s Affairs Office – Columbia, SC.

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