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Complexities of conducting a methane soil gas investigation in Downtown LA

October 12, 2016

complexities-of-conducting-a-methane-soil-gas-investigationA City of Los Angeles Methane Soil Gas Investigation in and of itself is not very difficult to complete. As a licensed City of Los Angeles Methane Testing Agency #10224, Terra-Petra routinely completes anywhere from 2 to 8 of per month. However, many times the site conditions can really determine the difficulty of the investigation. A particular project involving an historical Downtown Los Angeles (DTLA) building has proven to be one of the more challenging for Terra-Petra’s team due to the type of soil conditions and accessibility issues for the drill rig.

Upon completing a site walk of the property on September 2, 2016,  we determined that the only accessible area for conducting drilling activities was in the alley along the south side of the property. Given that the alley is considered to be in the “Right-of-Way,” the work required a City of Los Angeles Permit for Excavation in or Adjacent to Public Streets Under chapter 6, article 2 of the Los Angeles Municipal Code prior to commencing drilling activities.complexities-of-conducting-a-methane-soil-gas-investigation2

The process of getting the Permit for Excavation took a total of about 3 weeks from start to finish. The applicant is obligated to generate a site plan identifying all proposed boring locations, as well as all known underground utility lines. The utility line information can be gathered from the Bureau of Engineering maps, but it also gets field verified using ground penetrating radar and other similar technologies. Once submitted, fees are paid, refundable bonds are posted and the process starts. The permit outlines work hours (9:00 am to 3:30), notification requirements to the City, signage and traffic control requirements as well as resurfacing requirements.

These are just some of the things that keep a methane consultant‘s job interesting!


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