Wall’s s-veneer ‘appears stable’

The problem with pieces of falling “stone veneer,” which have come loose from a concrete retaining wall along North Campbell Station Road dating back to July according Town of Farragut engineer Darryl Smith, “appears” under control.

“All of the remaining veneer appears to be stable, and adhering well to the concrete wall. … Public Works has removed any stones that might have posed an imminent danger,” Smith stated about the wall, just north of the west entrance to Farragut High School, in an e-mailed response Friday, Nov. 17.

“[Town] staff continues to monitor the veneer for any changes. Of course, we want to determine the cause of the delamination, as well as the proper method[s] of repair as soon as possible, as we don’t want the delamination to continue,” Smith further stated. “Naturally, we’ll have to consider whether the delamination is isolated to just the areas we see now, or whether this is an issue with larger portions of the wall.

“We’ve contracted with a local consultant to examine the wall and materials to determine the cause[s] of the delamination, and to describe a proper repair. We definitely want to be certain the remainder of the stone veneer is secure, with no real chance of further delamination.”

As for a timetable, Smith stated, “I don’t have a schedule at this time.”

Looking back, Smith stated, “It’s my understanding that several stones fell from the wall back in early July. At that time, Public Works examined portions of the wall to determine if other stones might have delaminated as well, and removed quite a few more. Public Works later examined the whole wall in detail, and removed any portions of the façade that appeared to be delaminating.”

“The stone veneer is a ‘manufactured’ stone, which is applied to the front of the retaining wall with a bonding agent mixed into the mortar,” Smith further stated. “… The wall itself is minimum one-foot thick concrete with steel reinforcement, with a concrete and steel foundation several feet wide.

“These walls are typically designed with a high factor of safety, so it’s very unlikely there’s any structural issue.”