High Performance Pile Connections

A damaged pier at McNears Beach Park in Marin, California, was repaired by replacing portions with new structure.  The new structure was designed to meet current seismic design criteria.  This required a high performance pile-to-pile cap connection.   The high performance connection was designed using a fiber reinforced bearing pad, isolating the sides of the embedded pile, and unbonding the dowels for 24 inches of length. The high performance pile-to-pile cap connection used for this project added little additional cost to the project and significantly improved the seismic performance of the pile connection and the entire structure.  Testing by the University of Washington has shown that these connections perform significantly better during seismic loading than a classical pile connection.  We expect little damage at the pile connection during the design earthquake load.

Read Erik Soderberg’s paper on high performance pile connections.