Silver Spring Transit Center to get new layer of concrete to address construction flaws

The Silver Spring Transit Center needs a new two-inch layer of latex-modified concrete on its second and third levels to repair construction deficiencies, according to the Montgomery County official overseeing the work.

General Services Director David Dise did not offer a cost or timetable in his Thursday letter to County Executive Isiah Leggett and Council President Nancy Navarro. The decision on a new covering comes after weeks of deliberation among the county, designer Parsons Brinckerhoff, general contractor Foulger-Pratt and consultant KCE. The $120 million bus and train hub at Georgia Ave. and Colesville Rd. is more than two years behind schedule and tens of millions of dollars over budget. Issues with concrete — including cracks, insufficient thickness and questions about strength in some areas — have played a major role in the delay.

Dise has said that he would like to complete repairs before the onset of cold winter weather. But the proposed layering, which will take an estimated six weeks, must be approved by Metro and the county’s Department of Permitting Services. The permitting agency must also approve plans for a limited demolition called “roughing” that involves creating irregularities on the smooth surface to create a bond with the new latex covering. This would be done using a pressurized water jet and pneumatic chippers, Dise said.

Concrete issues at the Silver Spring Transit Center

Dise also reported that repairs to two key segments of roadway on the second level are underway. Concrete for 18 new beams under the roadway will be poured in mid-October.

The county and Metro, which is supposed to eventually operate the center as part of its regional system, are still trying to resolve other issues surrounding the problem-plagued project. These include responsibility for extra maintenance costs created by construction and design problems. Metro is also asking for additional tests to determine the load-bearing capacity of certain parts of the structure.