what constitutes adequacy for the intended purpose so that competitive bidding can be achieved
on USACE projects.
g. As mentioned above the vinyl is subject to non-linear behavior. Conventional beam analyses
may not be applicable. Design guidance will need to be established to assure successful behavior
of the vinyl structure based on an accurate model to be determined and designed to resist the
anticipated loading over the life of the project. This will entail an agreement on what constitutes
acceptable performance behaviors for this product by the USACE.
h. The vulnerability of vinyl wall to damage from vandalism or fire was discussed. These are
issues that would have to be considered in the decision process to use vinyl. Vinyl walls because
of their soft material and relatively low melting point would be much more likely to be damaged
from vandalism and fire than steel or concrete walls. A simple grass or brush fire could severely
damage a vinyl wall and its ability to function as designed. These would have to be
considerations that would have to be addressed on projects that have life safety implications
where vinyl sheet piling is used.
i. The undersigned requested a copy of the information presented by Dr. Dutta at the meeting in
his power point presentation. Dr. Dutta indicated that he would either send this information out
on a CD to those who requested the info or make the information available on a ftp site for
access. Dr. Dutta also indicated he planned to finalize his report covering the work he agreed to
perform for MVN on vinyl under the original scope agreement within 30 days. Additional
funding would be needed to cover other issues in the ECB not covered by the original scope of
Dr. Dutta's work.
4. Other Discussions
a. There was discussion by MVN representatives that the District is currently considering using
vinyl sheet piling for an I-Wall section for local protection for the Pailet Basin, Section 205 Study
CAP project. The undersigned suggested that if the District is definitely going to propose use of
vinyl sheet piling it should a request for a waiver to ECB 2002-31 with backup information
addressing all the issues raised in the ECB and get approval of this waiver before the report is
submitted, since the ECB is regarded as HQUSACE policy and HQUSACE would need to
approve any exception to the policy.
b. It was mentioned in Dr. Dutta's presentation that he had visited a constructed reach of a vinyl
sheet piling I-Wall used for hurricane protection (above ground protection) that was understood
to be constructed in the 1990's on Westwego Canal site by MVN. The undersigned was
unfamiliar with this reach of wall and how it was designed. It would appear to the undersigned
that this section of vinyl sheet piling as well as any other similar applications that have been
constructed by MVN should be checked based on the ongoing research to assure that these
sections are adequate for the intended purpose, especially if there are life safety implications in
event of failure, where these applications currently exist.
c. There was some discussion on the reason MVN was considering using vinyl sheet piling I-
walls over steel or concrete I-Walls for flood or hurricane protection. The reason MVN cited was
for cost savings. The undersigned pointed out that any accurate cost savings claimed of vinyl over