Birmingham construction project causes shopping center next door to start sinking into ground

Palace Shopping Center sinks 2 or 3 inches

By Rod Meloni - Reporter, CFP ®, Derick Hutchinson

BIRMINGHAM, Mich. - A construction project that went awry in Birmingham caused a shopping center next door to sink a few inches into the ground, officials said.

The Daxton Hotel is the new construction project: a five-story luxury hotel that will feature a two-story underground garage.

When excavation started last summer, everything appeared to move along smoothly.

Construction workers building next to an existing structure are required to pay attention to the new building's impact on the existing one.

Monitors noticed cracks in the floors and drywall on the first floor of the Palace Shopping Center, and on the second floor, they noticed the floor bowing downward.

The damage was caused by the building sinking 2 or 3 inches, officials said.

Engineers and architects were sent scrambling. They discovered the earth retention system for the garage wasn't working property and came up with a quick fix.

Workers put helical-shaped piers that look like a fisherman's augur under the plaza to keep it sturdy and stop the sinking.

Birmingham's building inspectors went to investigate and deemed the immediate fix was sound. The building was declared safe.

Now, it's up to the insurance companies to talk with each other and figure out the cost and the fix.

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