New Report on $70 Million McKinney ISD Stadium: Cracks Don't Compromise Slab

Cracks could allow for water seepage, corrosion damage; third report not yet released

What to Know

  • Second report says cracking does not compromise the slab but may allow water to seep in, corroding steel framework.
  • Construction and architecture firms to make repairs to $70 million stadium at no additional cost to taxpayers.
  • A final report on the third section of cracks, located in the lower bowl wall, has not yet been made public.

The second of three forensic engineering reports investigating excessive cracking in McKinney ISD's yet-to-be-opened $70 million stadium, was made public Monday morning.

The McKinney Independent School District shared the 234-page forensic report with NBC 5, which offered an explanation for deep cracks in the visitor concourse.

According to the report by Nelson Forensics, "The cracking at the visitor concourse does not presently compromise the strength of the slabs or otherwise pose a life safety concern."

The report goes on to say, "However, the cracks will allow water to migrate into the concrete cross section and influence corrosion of the reinforcing steel."

Nelson's analysis pointed to sections of concrete that saw excessive drying shrinkage, believed to be caused by an improper water ratio. When concrete is poured too wet, it’s not as strong. The report also cites insufficient steel reinforcing to control shrinkage cracking.

The report on the cracks in the visitor concourse follow a May preliminary report on cracks found in the home concourse of the brand new stadium. In May, Nelson wrote the home concourse cracks also did not cause a safety concern.

Earlier this year, NBC 5 asked an engineer who is not involved in the project to review the first preliminary report. Tom Witherspoon agreed the cracks don't appear to be structural. He agreed that Allen ISD's stadium, built on an elevated slab, saw a much different cause to its cracking, which closed the stadium for repairs back in 2014.

"That was a serious safety issue that had to be addressed," Witherspoon said. "This is an irritation and it wasn't done right."

Witherspoon reviewed the second report July 30 and said repairs would likely involve re-pouring concrete. He agreed repairs could wait until next year because the report found the cracks don't pose a threat to safety.

When McKinney ISD discovered deep cracks in three sections of the stadium, it hired a forensic engineering firm to investigate each section. A final report on the third section of cracks, located in the lower bowl wall, has not yet been made public.

At the June McKinney ISD Board of Trustees meeting, Jason Bird, CFO for the district, told the school board no repairs would begin before all investigative reports are completed.

This summer, the board looked at seven different timelines for repairs. All but one of the proposals would require the football or soccer seasons for the 2018-2019 season to be played elsewhere.

Monday, McKinney ISD said it was waiting for a final confirmation from its engineers on if the stadium will open as scheduled for the fall football season. A spokesman said the district expected a decision soon.

McKinney ISD's superintendent said the district would get the stadium taxpayers paid for and the construction and architecture firm have previously pledged to make repairs at no additional costs.

A McKinney ISD spokesman told NBC 5 in an email on Monday, "Both Stantec Architecture and Manhattan Construction have agreed to cover all expenses associated with necessary repairs at the stadium. The extent of the repairs and total cost is still being determined. We do not know at this time how much financial responsibility will fall on each party."

McKinney ISD said the district is withholding payments until the stadium repairs are done.

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