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Capstone Design Spring 2018

Project Sponsor: UT Department of Forestry and Nisus Corporation
Team Members: Morgan Jenkins (lead), Will King, Matthew Livesay, Liliana Porras, and Trenton Wiles

Transmission towers, commonly constructed with steel, often stand in stark contrast to the surrounding environment. These structures typically have been designed with a focus on functionality over aesthetics. However, this project was designed for the Aesthetic Competition Series.

While the competition had specific parameters for the transmission tower, the team decided to limit the material to timber. The aesthetic design concept is inspired by nature and is visually abstract; this combination allows a single design to be incorporated in harmony with both urban and rural location considerations. Collaboration with both forestry professionals and architects helped build the motivation to demonstrate the viability and versatility of timber in contrast to other common construction materials such as steel. Wood is a natural renewable resource with a higher weight to strength ratio than steel.

Within this project, the proposed wooden structure is compared to a similar steel structure to assess the practicality of utilizing timber for transmission tower construction. Structural, geotechnical, and construction engineering analyses were completed along with a life cycle analysis for both steel and timber. The evidence provided from the analyses within this work will help inform engineers about the differences of utilizing steel or timber for future transmission tower designs while considering an empathetic response toward aesthetics.

Project Sponsor: City of Alcoa
Team Members: Jackson Oakes (lead), Justin Condon, Dylan Jenkins, Nicole Pearlman

The City of Alcoa is interested in making improvements to the roadway and drainage networks of Chandler Road and Airport Auto Auction Drive (AAA Drive) to better service the businesses and community in the surrounding area. AAA Drive is a private road, owned by Airport Auto Auction, and Chandler Road is a public road, maintained by the City of Alcoa.

Cost estimations and traffic analyses were performed based on different design options to determine the best option for improvements. Economic and social benefits were also considered. Improvements or replacements to the drainage structures and systems, the retaining wall located along AAA Drive, and pavement were included in the cost analysis and estimation.

To evaluate existing drainage conditions and to model improvement options, stormwater runoff analyses were performed using the Rational Method in Autodesk Storm and Sanitary Analysis. Superelevation calculations for roadway improvements were performed in Autodesk Civil 3D. The traffic analysis consisted of recording traffic counts for both Chandler Road and AAA Drive. These counts were compared to traffic counts for the adjacent roads: Airbase Road and Wrights Ferry Road, which were recorded on TDOT’s website. Comparing the observed traffic counts to TDOT’s years of data allowed for the future amounts of traffic for Chandler Road and AAA Drive to be extrapolated. The concerns related to the existing retaining wall located on AAA Drive stemmed from one particular buckled piling.

Calculations pertaining to maximum moments experienced by the piling, overturning moments, and active and passive pressures were performed. These calculations allowed for determination of the stability of the wall as well as for the ability to select an appropriate replacement design, should AAA Drive be adopted by the City of Alcoa. Recommendations for improvements were reported to the City of Alcoa.

Project Sponsor: City of Athens
Team Members: Todd Huber (lead), David Dillard, Michael Feeney, Erik Perfetto

The City of Athens and McMinn County has recently acquired approximately six acres of land and 4.8 miles of retired railway property for further development of the Eureka Trail by the Athens Parks and Recreation Department. The Eureka Trail is a recreational trail for pedestrians and cyclists that will, through this project, connect the City of Athens to the Town of Englewood. The development of this trail into Englewood will help drive up local economy.

Five miles of the trail has already been completed in Phase I of the project, with the remaining two miles of the trail needing completion in Phase II. In order to complete Phase II, several tasks need to be performed. Designing an ADA compliant mini-park that will act as a trail way access point will need to be completed. The safe crossing of Highway 39 using TDOT standards is necessary. The execution of a bridge analysis and decking design for an existing trestle bridge will need to be completed. And lastly, a trail through Don Edgemon Park and into the historic, downtown area of Englewood will need to be designed.

This complete design of the Eureka Trail will connect the City of Athens to the town of Englewood, increase quality of life for the locals, and create higher foot traffic into Englewood.

Project Sponsor: Alex Haley Farm, Children’s Defense Fund
Team Members: Jose Luna (lead), Blake Anthony, Chelsey Brummer, Christian Kidd, and Jeremy Melton

Substantial bank loss attributed to erosion and urbanization of the region has created an undesirable and potentially hazardous environment at Haley Farm, in Clinton, Tennessee. Upon review, the student Senior Design team has deemed resolution of site stability issues paramount.

The Haley Farm, named after former owner Alex Haley, was acquired by the Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) in 1994. CDF is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit whose mission is to create an equitable future for all children.

The student team has been tasked with developing design concepts to address the needs of the farm. The approach to the restoration was holistic, as required by the nature of the issues. Testing of the site included flow measurements to model the behavior of the creek. Abatement of other effects produced by creek flooding will include options for removing the existing culvert. Additionally, soil samples were extracted to obtain current geotechnical data to determine solutions for soil stabilization as well as the design of abutments for a bridge across Hines Creek to replace the existing culvert. To quell the accelerated erosion of the bank, native vegetation will be implemented in the final design.

Project Sponsor: City of Loudon
Team Members: Nathan Kabir (lead), Maxwell Carter, and Elijah Roberts

The team was tasked with designing a marina on the Tennessee River in downtown Loudon, Tennessee. The goal of project is to bring economic growth to the area by attracting the recreational users of Watts Bar Lake to use marina services like vessel fueling and waste dumping and access to dining from lake. There is currently no fueling facility on the upstream portion of Watts Bar Reservoir.

Two of the major challenges of the project were regulatory approval of the design and creating a feasible resolution to the utility relocation. Throughout the project, students have meet with mentors from the Tennessee Valley Authority, Army Corps of Engineers, Loudon Utility Board, Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, and professional engineers from around the area to guide them with their design. The final deliverables for the project are a set of complete construction drawings and a detailed engineering report discussing all of the elements of their design.

Existing site conditions contained a creek flowing through two large floodways separated by a road and culvert. To make the site navigable to boaters, they plan to remove the road and the culvert and dredge the floodways. Thru traffic will be diverted to other streets around the site. Dredging is required to allow enough depth in the harbor for motorboats to maneuver. The students performed their own survey of the site.

The design gave students the opportunity to use and improve their skills in the fields of water resources, geotechnical, and transportation engineering. The marina banks needed to be protected from rising and falling reservoir levels with stable design. Some utility lines running through the site had to be rerouted to prevent them from interfering with marina activities. An existing sanitary sewer pump station on site provided significant challenges for the students to work through. A gravity sewer line and the sanitary sewer force main crossed the culvert going to and from the pump station. Engineering calculations were performed to assure that the performance of the lines would not be lost with the modifications.

Project Sponsor: City of Maryville and LDA Engineering
Team Members: Sydney Reeder (lead), Matthew Davis, Blake Floyd and Jacob Gasnow

D.T.S. Engineering was requested by the City of Maryville to expand upon its greenway trail by connecting surrounding neighborhoods North of East Harper Avenue in Maryville, Tennessee to the surrounding city center. The project requires the inspection and likely replacement of two wooden trestle bridges along the proposed trail site following an abandoned railway bed.

The city has asked that D.T.S. Engineering to investigate replacement alternatives for each of the wooden trestle bridges and to ensure that the greenway trail meets compliance with the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Public Rights-of-Way Accessibility Guidelines (PROWAG) standards. Alternative options for the potential East Harper Avenue Bridge replacement include filling the existing grade and eliminating the need for the bridge, replacing the bridge with a concrete box culvert, or designing a new vehicular bridge. All of these options were included in a cost comparison evaluation to identify a preferred alternative.

The second bridge crossing over East Broadway Avenue was redesigned into a steel pedestrian bridge. Other pedestrian crosswalks that did not require bridges were designed at Wright Road, Everett Avenue, and Sevierville Road. The greenway trail, bridges, and crossings included design and analysis calculations from construction, structural, geotechnical, transportation, and water resources engineering disciplines.

The City of Maryville hopes that this expansion will allow new access to the greenway trail and will continue to boost the economy around the city center.

Project Sponsor: UT Landscape Architecture’s Tennessee River Studio
Team Members: Evan Lockhart (lead), Hank Becker, Clark Marshall, Kraemer Scott, and Colin Williams

Cities across the state, such as Nashville and Chattanooga, recently integrated their riverfront property into economic centers for people to congregate, but Knoxville has not been able to employ the Tennessee River as a resource in this way.

Neyland Drive, a 4.5 mile four-lane highway, hugs much of the northern shoreline of the river and eliminates potential economic development from occurring by limiting available space. The University of Tennessee Landscape Architecture department, in  association with the Tennessee River Studio, has proposed several design scenarios that reduce the number of lanes on Neyland Drive to allow for future development along the Tennessee Riverfront. This future development could include infrastructure such as mixed-used developments to greenway extensions and beautification projects to try attract foot-traffic to the Tennessee River.

CHECK, a student team of design engineers, was contacted to assess multiple lane reduction scenarios and identify a design solution(s) that offers the ability to enhance the waterfront without harming the regional traffic system. While evaluating the various design scenarios, CHECK considered numerous attributes including roadway Level Of Service, corridor travel time, practicality, space attained, network absorption count, and cost analyses to guarantee that the best options were considered for future construction.

Project Sponsor: Rogers Group, Inc.
Team Members: Eric Schindler (lead), Zach Arwood and Katie Curley

The stone processing industry has faced the issue of producing a by-product of fines during various crushing stages since the industry’s inception. Aggregate fines typically have very limited applications, and often require further processing to become suitable for these applications. Rogers Group, Inc., a processed stone supplier, recently collaborated with the senior design group, Aggregate Innovation Engineers (AIE), of the Civil and Environmental Department at the University of Tennessee, to investigate purposes for the limestone fines produced by the company during processing.

After literature review spanning concrete, asphalt, water filtration, plastic production, and landfill gravity wall filler applications, a cooperative decision was made to explore landfill gravity wall filler applications, due to high volume of fines required, the ability to utilize the fines without further processing, and the positive environmental impact of vertical landfill expansion versus lateral expansion. To establish the viability of utilizing limestone fines for gravity walls, material properties relevant to gravity wall design were investigated including: shear strength, cohesion, internal friction angle, and particle size distribution. The properties were then used as parameters to design a landfill gravity wall that Rogers Group could integrate into marketing materials to encourage sale of the limestone fines.

Project Sponsor: TDOT
Team Members: Ethan Miller (lead), Case Offutt, Sam Rodgers and J. Michael Wilson

TDOT and the city of Alcoa, Tennessee are needing to hire a new client for an industrial development project. They are able to hire CEMS Engineering through the State Industrial Access Program (SIA). This program provides funding for highway access to new and expanding industries across the state.

Engineering services are needed to improve the surrounding infrastructure of Project Python Meteor. TDOT has tasked CEMS Engineering with the roadway design, storm water management, traffic signalization, and overall safety of this SIA. The roadway design aims to improve the intersection on State Route 334. These improvements need to be made adequate for WB67 trucks to able to access Proffitt Springs Road and will align with the AASHTO Greenbook standards. Also, a traffic analysis will be ran to decide if right and left turn lanes on State Route 334 will be needed to reduce congestion. With the addition of the turn lane on Proffitt Springs Road and the design having 12 foot lanes, the existing culvert will need to be demolished and reconstructed. The new design for the culvert will follow the D-PG-4 design standards in the TDOT manual. A noise analysis will consider the hydrological impacts of redirecting the unnamed tributary branch of the Tennessee River.