exactly 9:00 am on Sunday, January 25, 2004, NADC-members
D.H. Griffin of Texas, Inc. (DHGT) and Dykon Explosive Demolition
Corp., Inc. imploded the Fischer high-rise building located
in New Orleans for the city's Housing Authority. The Fischer
high-rise building, built in 1966, was a 14-story concrete
structure that stood 150 feet tall, 314 feet long and 50 feet
wide. This was the first building to be imploded in New Orleans
and took on a Mardi Gras flavor. Spectators came from all
over the New Orleans area and some from as far away as Mississippi
to see the implosion.
to the implosion, workers prepared the structures for the
explosives by drilling over 1000 bore holes and loading explosive
charges in each position. The building was a column and shear
wall structure. The end walls were shear walls and every third
column line was also a shear wall. These shear walls were
partially removed to create columns on each of the four blast
floors. Bore holes were then drilled and loaded with 100 to
300 grain detonating cord. Each of the columns on the blast
floors was loaded with 1 and ¼ inch x 8-inch emulsion
charges. A non-electric system was used with a ½ second
delay between echelons.
to the implosion D.H. Griffin of Texas, Inc., the General
Contractor for the project, oversaw the removal of all asbestos-containing
materials, PCB-contaminated light ballasts, fluorescent light
bulbs as well as any paints and solvents that were left behind
by the Owner.
ran the gamut of tasks that demolition contractors routinely
perform. Community relations proved a very important part
of the project due to its location. The project required extensive
planning and coordination with a very diverse group of concerned
parties such as local residents, two public schools within
the safety perimeter and the Crescent City Connection better
known as The Mississippi Bridge. It was decided that during
the actual implosion the bridge would be shut down for five
minutes as a safety measure. D.H. Griffin of Texas and Dykon
executed the work in a "good neighbor" manner keeping
in mind that there were homes, schools and businesses within
the immediate area of the structure.
the site is cleared of all debris, Griffin will oversee the
removal of all slabs, pile caps and streets within the boundary
of the project, backfilling and regarding of the entire site
in preparation for new construction.
interesting part of the project was the involvement of the
United States Department of Commerce's National Institute
of Standards and Technology (NIST). NIST contacted both D.H.
Griffin and Dykon requesting that they be involved in the
project in order to do research in the development of radio
and cell phone frequencies that will penetrate a collapsed
building or structure The idea is to develop frequencies to
be used in the future in the event of a 9/11-type catastrophe.
The problem they are attempting to overcome will allow radio
and cell phone frequencies to better transmit in the event
that a fireman, policeman or civilian is trapped under a pile