Case Studies

Roundhouse Relocation, Saratoga Springs, NY



Design/ build relocation of roundhouse, including a new foundation.

The approximately 70 foot outside diameter historic roundhouse (reportedly one of only 7 left in the country), with its slate covered conical roof, was separated from its original foundation and moved to a new foundation just over 100 feet away. This project was another team effort by International Chimney Corporation and Expert House Movers of Maryland.

In the late 1800's a large iron tank inside the roundhouse (a tank long-since removed) was used to store gas manufactured from burning coal by the Saratoga Gas Light Co., gas which was piped to light city street lamps. In recent years the roundhouse served as a "garage" and was scheduled for demolition when the site upon which it sat was scheduled for "superfund" cleanup. Efforts by the Saratoga Springs Preservation Foundation were instrumental in saving one of the last remaining roundhouses from a former MGP (Manufactured Gas Plant) site.

The building was moved on "rail" (steel beams forming tracks upon which the roundhouse would roll to the new site). Four parallel rails were used in all. The roundhouse sat on a crisscrossing grid of steel beams which in turn rested upon fourteen 50-ton hydraulic jacks. Sitting directly underneath each jack were 75-ton steel rollers which were in direct contact with the rails as the building was moved.

The grid of move-steel upon which the roundhouse sat conisted of 4 duplex main beams (one directly above, and parallel to, each rail), 4 duplex cross-steel beams, 44 needle beams, and miscellaneous support steel. The estimated weight of the roundhouse, including all move-steel, was 553 tons.

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