Updates from GNCB

GNCB Names Charles Brown President

  • By GNCB
  • 24 Feb, 2017

Old Saybrook, CT

GNCB Consulting Engineers, P.C. names Charles Brown, P.E. its new President. Brown, previously Vice President, replaces Kenneth Gibble, P.E. who retired from GNCB last December following 45 years of practice.

Brown brings with him over 35 years of experience as a structural engineer. His career includes the design and oversight of a multitude of projects including educational facilities, hospitals, and museums. A few of his recent projects include the Cornell Law School Expansion in Ithaca, NY; St. Katharine Drexel Chapel at Xavier University in New Orleans, LA; the renovation of the Henry Ruthven Monteith Building at UCONN’s Storrs Campus; the new West Beach Facilities Building at Hammonasset Beach; and the elevation of the Watch Hill Yacht Club in Westerly, RI. He holds B.S. and M.Eng. Degrees from Cornell University in Civil and Environmental Engineering, and is a licensed Professional Engineer in CT, MA, NY, NH, and RI.

GNCB provides structural engineering, geotechnical engineering, and historic preservation services throughout the country in a variety of sectors. The firm has been based in Old Saybrook, CT for 52 years. When asked how he feels about taking over leadership, Brown stated:

"For as long as I can remember, the engineering of building things has been my passion. From the smallest consult to a large complex facility, each project brings with it challenges that make this profession so very rewarding. I am excited and honored to help lead GNCB as we move into our next 50 years of providing innovative solutions to our clients."

Cornell University Law School Expansion, Phase 1, Ithaca, NY:  The Cornell Law School Expansion, Phase 1 included the renovation of the existing 1930s Myron Taylor Hall and the new design and construction of an underground lecture-room addition. The expansion consists of steel framing supported by concrete foundations. The 54-foot, clear-spanning structure was designed to support a green roof and traffic loading . The renovation of Myron Taylor Hall included underpinning foundations to provide a new sub-grade story at the same elevation as the addition. To facilitate the design, GNCB designed and monitored shoring efforts for the multiple upper library stack levels to ensure continued integrity of the historic structure. This is a LEED Platinum Project and the winner of the Boston Society of Architects Educational Facilities Award, the AIA-Southern NY Design Award, and the SCUPI/AIA_CAE Excellence in Architecture Award. Architect: Ann Beha Architects . Contractor: Welliver .

Xavier University St. Katharine Drexel Chapel, New Orleans, LA : New 12,000 square foot, masonry structure with a steel-framed truss roof and is supported on a reinforced concrete slab and 65-foot long friction piles. The building is located on a site that is on axis with the original campus quadrangle where Pope John Paul II spoke in 1987. Characteristic of many other Xavier campus buildings, the Chapel’s copper roof will slowly oxidize and turn green. The Chapel is LEED Silver Certified and is the winner numerous awards including the 2013 AIA-New Orleans Design Award , the 2014 AIA-CT Design Award, and the 2016 AIA Religious Art & Architecture Award. Architect: Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects . Contractor: Landis Construction Co., LLC .

University of Connecticut Henry Ruthven Monteith Building Renovation, Storrs, CT : This project is a $17 Million renovate-as-new project for UCONN’s 1959 academic building. The steel and masonry structure was seismically retrofitted to allow modification of interior spaces for the new, LEED Silver Certified space. Architect: Perkins Eastman . Contractor: KBE Building Corporation

Hammonasset Beach State Park West Beach Facilities, Madison, CT : New timber-framed structure with deck and boardwalk to support the Park’s service needs. Architect: BH+A . Contractor: Lawrence Brunoli Inc.

Watch Hill Yacht Club, Westerly, RI : On-going elevation of existing structure to lift it out of the floodplain. Pictured are recordings of blow-counts for new steel H-piles. Architect: Burgin Lambert Architects . Contractor: A/Z Corporation .

By GNCB 17 Nov, 2017

GNCB attended the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Sayebrooke Village Elderly Housing Expansion project this month. The project broke ground earlier this year and now contributes an additional 15 units to the highly popular complex on Sheffield Street.

The buildings are a mixture of single- and two-story wood-framed structures on concrete slabs-on-grade. GNCB provide structural engineering and geotechnical engineering services for the project. The expansion was a Connecticut Housing Finance Authority (CHFA)-funded project.

Architect: Wiles + Architects

Contractor: Haynes Construction

By GNCB 14 Nov, 2017

Ms. Zoe Laird of Ohio has been hired as a Design Engineer at GNCB. Ms. Laird graduated from the University of New Haven (UNH) this May with a Bachelor’s of Science in Civil Engineering.

As a student, Ms. Laird was an active member of UNH’s student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers’ (ASCE) Concrete Canoe team, and was a member of the student chapter of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE).  

Ms. Laird’s senior design project was to design a four-story steel-framed boutique hotel with an underground reinforced concrete parking garage for UNH’s Hospitality and Tourism department. She performed much of the structural analysis and structural design for the building, and performed hand calculations to verify the computer model.

Past work experience includes an internship with the Ashtabula County Engineer’s Office in Jefferson, OH; tutoring entry-level engineering courses at UNH; acting as counselor for Camp GEMS (Girls in Engineering, Math, and Science) at Ohio Northern University; and several summers at YMCA Camp Fitch holding various positions including Tech Focus Counselor.

By GNCB 30 Oct, 2017

Amy Jagaczewski , GNCB Engineer, attended this year’s Association for Preservation Technology International (APTi) Conference in Ottawa, Canada . This year’s conference, themed CAPITALizing on Heritage, was a joint conference between APTi and The National Trust of Canada in honor of Canada’s 150th Anniversary. Approximately 1100 delegates from over 20 countries attended, including engineers, architects, preservationists, owners, historians, students, craftspeople, and technicians.

The APTi Conference offered professional development opportunities sorted into seven tracks depending on attendees’ backgrounds and interests. Ms. Jagaczewski attended presentations on the investigation, analysis, planning, and design of heritage structures as well as case studies on successful implementation of structural and preservation engineering principles. Topics directly corresponding with current GNCB work included reversibility of retrofits for exposed structural framing, management and assessment of historic coastal structures, and practices for analyzing unreinforced masonry buildings in moderate seismic zones.

By GNCB 18 Oct, 2017

The Northampton Community Arts Trust began occupying their newly renovated building at 33 Hawley Street in Northampton, MA this fall. The prefabricated metal building was originally built in the late 1980s and required structural upgrades to support the new use and energy-efficient design. The 25,000 square foot building will be used by the Trust to support education, rehearsals, and performances for varying forms of art.

GNCB provided structural engineering and geotechnical engineering services for this project during the initial investigation, design phases, and construction phases. Structural work included supporting new design features as well as addressing deficiencies in the existing gravity and lateral framing systems for modern loads. Geotechnical investigations included interior soil excavations to confirm the layout of existing foundations and subsurface characteristics for the installation of a new elevator pit.

Improvements to the roof framing involved the addition of 50-foot long steel trusses supported on new steel columns at the centerline of the building. The new steel off-loads the original steel bent frames to meet modern building loads and allow the installation of solar panels and a future suspended catwalk system for the black box theater. Steel x-braces were installed between the new and existing perimeter building columns to improve the building’s lateral system. GNCB also provided structural designs for the monumental stair and mezzanine and the new front entrance vestibule.

Architect: Thomas Douglas Architects

Contractor: D.A Sulivan & Sons, Inc.

Steel Fabricator and Erector: Dublin Steel Corporation

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