Charleston Condominium Association Proactively Addresses Corrosion
Dockside Condominiums is a luxury high-rise complex is located in historic Charleston, SC. This 18-story building was constructed in 1976 with 191 conventionally reinforced balconies through cantilevered construction. At the time of construction, there were no height restrictions in Charleston. Today, the maximum elevation of new buildings in the historic district is limited to no more than 3 stories. As such, residents of Dockside can enjoy a 360 degree view from their units with no visual interruptions near them. This helps make these units valuable and highly desirable. Situated on the Charleston Harbor, the structure is exposed to a highly corrosive environment. As with many structures erected near salt water bays, beaches and quays, salt carried by air has progressively deposited on the reinforced concrete surfaces leading to corrosion of reinforcing steel. Over the years this and other aging mechanisms have resulted in noticeable damage that has to be addressed to ensure safety, reliability and an extended service life for the building. The owner of Dockside needed a long-term solution that would keep the building in operation or else, if the structure ever had to be rebuilt, it would be subjected to the new elevation restrictions. This article will detail the importance of performing a condition assessment to discover the root causes for the damage to make educated decisions about repairs, protection, and service life extension.