Project Profile: Hoffman Mill Fuel Site

Fort Collins, Colorado

While CGRS is known for installing and removing tanks, you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who can remember a job in which we moved tanks already in use and installed them at a new location. But that’s exactly what the City of Fort Collins trusted CGRS to do with the Hoffman Mill Fuel Site project.

The City was seeking to repurpose three 1,000-gallon aboveground storage tanks – all at different locations – and relocate them to the aggregate crushing site at 1380 Hoffman Mill Road, just across the railroad tracks east and north of CGRS’s Fort Collins headquarters. The City previously used the tanks to store E-85 fuel but stopped using that fuel and the tanks about 10 years ago. The plan was to convert two of the tanks to diesel and one to gasoline.

Errin Henggeler, City of Fort Collins Environmental Regulatory Specialist, said the tanks will store fuel for all departments’ fleets in their new location. The City currently brings a fuel transfer tank to the aggregate crushing site to fuel its equipment and other trucks there, and trucks also fill up at TEAM Petroleum farther north on Link Lane. Having the tanks permanently on-site will allow the City to discontinue both practices.

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Hoffman Mills - Fuel Site Project - Tank Replacement - CGRS
Hoffman Mills - Fuel Site Project - Tank Replacement - CGRS
Hoffman Mills - Fuel Site Project - Tank Replacement - CGRS

The City tasked CGRS with moving the three tanks and their dispensers from sites in three different parts of town to the Hoffman Mill site. The team completed this – including decommissioning all three tanks – all in one day in mid-February.

“The biggest hurdle we faced with accomplishing this was the coordination,” said Drew Higgins, CGRS Construction Services Project Manager who headed up the job. “We needed to have a City representative, State inspectors, the Fire Marshall, a crane and our crew synced to caravan to each site in an efficient manner. We were able to do this very efficiently and were done with all three sites by lunchtime.”

CGRS’s responsibilities included installing all electrical, grading, drainage structures, tank painting, piping and concrete work before moving tanks, and doing all of the necessary installations.

Moving each tank required draining, evacuating and disposing of all lines, and removing and disposing of all wiring and conduit. Prepping the new location and installing the tanks included the site drainage plan, dirt work, concrete, utilities, new fencing, new landscape, and new fuel system that included new piping with the previously used tanks and dispensers, which went in last.

Hoffman Mills - Fuel Site Project - Tank Replacement - CGRS
Hoffman Mills - Fuel Site Project - Tank Replacement - CGRS
Hoffman Mills - Fuel Site Project - Tank Replacement - CGRS

Through its existing contract with the City, CGRS Environmental Services provided tank closure duties, which consisted primarily of taking photos and preparing reports.

Higgins said the biggest issue CGRS has faced while completing the project is finding a three-phase (high voltage) power line on the site that was not on the City’s original drawings for the project. The discovery caused significant interference with the design of the project as the power line’s elevation was higher than the designed stormwater flow line. City representatives, the architect, the engineer, the City’s Light and Power division, and CGRS team members took several weeks to come up with a plan to address the issue.

Meanwhile, CGRS moved forward with the fueling side of the project, with which the power line didn’t interfere. While the delay did cost four to five weeks on the civil side of the project, the team is working to make it up in less time.

Higgins said CGRS has been able to continue with the project despite the restrictions resulting from the spread of COVID-19, and all crew members have remained healthy.

“We are diligently following the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations as well as the instructions form the governor,” he said. “The remaining work to be completed on-site does not require any of the workers to be within 6 feet of each other. CGRS has been diligent in making sure crews are feeling well and providing cleaning supplies and hand sanitizer.”

The fact that this project is located close to CGRS has definitely been a benefit.

“It’s not every day we get to work in Fort Collins, so when a project comes up like this, in our backyard, it really eliminates many of the hurdles we can face during out-of-town projects,” Higgins said. “This project was a great chance for our Civil/Water/Wastewater and the Refined Fuel teams to come together and provide our client with an end product worth bragging about.”

The Hoffman Mill Fuel Site should be operational by the end of April.