Case Study: Please read and answer the questions posed for the following case studay:
An off-campus condominium housing tower, housing mostly Graduate Students, has cantilevered concrete balconies. In the eighth year of occupancy since construction completion, a tenant noticed cracking at the balcony to wall slab interface. It is a monolithic poured CIP slab. Also, there is rust staining and semi-irregular spalls. The tenant has looked at several balconies of neighbors and noticed the same conditions. The issues have been reported to the property manager and on to the owner (Virigo LLC), whom is now the second owner of the property.
The housing tower was built by a group of developers (Diputs, LLC) with an architect and a general contractor. The building was sold to another group of investors (Virigo, LLC) within one year of completion. The “standard” (Structural, M, E, P) due diligence was performed by the second ownership group and no deficiencies were found and no liens were on the title.
Virigo, LLC hired a consulting group to investigate the conditions.
Upon consulting group review, the balconies were closed off with no tenant access.
What testing & investigations would you use to determine that the balconies should be closed until repairs are made?
What testing & investigations would you use to determine the cause of the concrete failures?
The balcony reinforcement was found to be under sized, but correctly installed per design.
The balconies were left untreated but the CIP walls received protective coatings & sealants & are in good shape.
The contract documents showed zero coatings/protections for the cantilevered balconies.
Who is responsible (money) for the repairs? Current owner (Virigo, LLC), Developer (Diputs, LLC), Architect, or General Contractor? If multiple, what percentage of culpability for each & why.
What resources would be cited for your decision on responsibility/culpability as a consultant during the litigation.
How would you approach the current owners (Virigo, LLC) with your decision on responsibility/culpability?