New $100M Plan Will Address the Structural Issues with Millennium Tower

A panel of four experts was chosen to review a new plan that would address the issues with Millennium Tower. The Tower has been in the news quite a bit for the last few years after it was discovered that it is both leaning and sinking. Thorough inspections were done and they showed that the foundation of the building was not anchored in bedrock.

San Francisco Sunset

The original general contractors went down 80 feet and thought that would be enough to build a strong foundation for the tower. However, they did not hit bedrock, which is required for buildings as tall as Millennium Tower.

10 Years of Problems at Millennium Tower

The Tower is located at 301 Mission Street in San Francisco, CA. It was designed and built to be a 58-story luxury condo with mixed use commercial space on the ground floor. The public began to notice that the building was leaning back in 2009. As the years have rolled by, the leaning has become more pronounced. Engineers were called out to investigate. They learned that the building is also sinking.

In the last 10 years, the building has sunk into the ground 17 inches and tilted to the northwest 14 inches. Satellite photos from the European Space Agency show the building to be sinking about 2 inches per year.

Over the years, the building’s residents have complained of a variety of problems:

  • Floors buckling
  • Strange odors
  • Walls cracking
  • Garage walls buckling
  • Moisture seeping into walls and floors
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What the Transit Authority to Blame?

The building’s owners have claimed that the Tower was fine until the Transit Authority began building a high-rise next door. They say that those construction workers pumped too much water out of the ground, causing damage to the Tower’s foundation. More recent inspections of the Tower show that the foundation was simply not built according to standards.

Engineers and contractors at multiple firms have been brought in over the years to inspect things and try to offer solutions. Finally an independent engineering and design review recommended repairs that will cost approximately $100 million.

Some of the residents in Millennium Tower were well-known people like Joe Montana and his wife and venture capitalist, Tom Perkins.  But many of them have since moved out of the building and filed lawsuits against the building owners. All of the condos were priced in the multi-million dollar range with the Penthouse apartment selling for over $9 million.

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