Literally miles of pile will be installed in New Orleans over the next two years as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers rushes to bring the area’s flood-control system to 100-year protection levels by June 1, 2011. As the largest civil-works project in the area’s history, it could be a very loud job. But so far it isn’t, thanks in part to a quiet hydraulic machine that area engineers are making some noise over.
“It's not possible to eliminate all the potential sources of damage on these contracts, but this is one measure,” says Stan Green, program manager for Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control Project (SELA). Because much of the work is in close proximity to residences, businesses and infrastructure, the Corps and contractors are specifying pile installation by a special machine produced by Giken America Corp., the U.S. arm of Tokyo-based Giken Seisakusho Co. Ltd.