CONTACT RCI JOIN RCI SEARCH EMPLOYMENT ADS SEARCH TECHNICAL ARTICLES MEMBER LOG IN RCI, Inc. RCI, Inc. is an international association of building envelope consultants. Members specialize in design, investigation, repair, and management of roofing, exterior wall, and waterproofing systems. RCI, Inc. is an international association of building envelope consultants. Members specialize in design, investigation, repair, and management of roofing, exterior wall, and waterproofing systems. MEMBERSHIP Become a Member Membership Categories and Rates Member Benefits, Programs, and Services Member Resources/Downloads PROFESSIONAL REGISTRATIONS Registered Roof Consultant – RRC® Registered Roof Observers – RRO® Registered Waterproofing Consultant – RWC® Registered Exterior Wall Consultant – REWC® Registered Exterior Wall Observer – REWO® Registered Building Envelope Consultant – RBEC® EDUCATION Educational Event Calendar 2019 RCI International Convention & Trade Show Education | Speakers Trade Show Info. Sponsors | Exhibitors Hotel and Accommodations 2018 RCI Building Envelope Technology Symposium Register to Attend Education | Speakers Sponsors/Exhibitors Schedule of Events Hotel Accommodations Building Envelope Educational Programs e-Learning Programs 2018 Canadian Building Envelope Technology Symposium- Legacy Site Register to Attend Education | Speakers Sponsors/Exhibitors Schedule of Events Hotel and Accommodations PUBLICATIONS RCI Interface, Technical Journal RCI Interface – Digital Edition RCI Manual of Practice Publications Marketplace Technical Articles Library NEWS/ADVOCACY RCI News Posts RCI In the Media Media Partners Position Statements Technical Advisories Member Self-Advocacy Tools ABOUT RCI RCI Members’ Services RCI Members’ Ethics Code Board of Directors Chapters and Regions Committees Association Staff Privacy Policy Frequently Asked Questions FIND A MEMBER You are here: Home / Education / RCI, Inc. – 2018 Building Envelope Technology Symposium RCI, Inc. – 2018 Building Envelope Technology Symposium

Terra-Petra Waterproofing Divison Sponsors 2018 Building Envelope Technology Symposium

The Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division was proud to sponsor the 2018 RCI, Inc. Building Envelope Technology Symposium at the at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center in Nashville, Tennessee, November 16-17, 2018. We had our executive team on hand (Barry Taheri, Josh Heidt, Dan Valdez and Justin Conaway).

This two-day educational program offered cutting-edge information regarding design, construction, maintenance and repair of modern and/or older building envelopes. The event’s open, inclusive environment encouraged attendees to ask questions and stimulates dialogue. Speakers offered relevant solutions by referencing real-world examples and specific case histories.

RCI’s expert instructors offered more than just technical data. Presenters reinforced program content with practical examples from applications in the field. With plenty of opportunities to ask questions, attendees got the answers they needed. Instructor/attendee dialogue was definitely encouraged. Geared towards building envelope professionals, architects, engineers, contractors, and facility managers, this program was invaluable to anyone involved with maintaining or designing building envelope systems.

rci-aia-logos-vertAttendees earned up to 12 Continuing Educational Hours (CEHs) from RCI.

Members of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) earned up to 12 Learning Units (LUs) and Health Safety Welfar (HSW)>
Credit reported directly to AIA.



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Terra-Petra’s Blindside Waterproofing Project featured in Waterproof! Magazine

Terra-Petra Building Waterproofing Division Project Featured on the Cover of Waterproof Magazine, Fall 2018



Blindside waterproofing systems are among the most difficult to design and install.  These waterproofing and drainage systems are placed before the structural walls are poured, which means they must be installed over a soil retention system rather than concrete or masonry.  That retention system—whether it be lagging beams, sheet pilings, shotcrete, or compacted native soils—is typically rough, uneven, and subsequently requires extensive detailing.

Additionally, blindside applications are usually part of massive projects that extend far below a water table where, in some cases, hydrostatic pressure can be extreme. Here, the workmanship must be flawless, as once the structural wall is in place, it is extremely difficult to repair any leaks that develop.

While blindside waterproofing is a considerably more complex below-grade solution, sometimes it’s the easiest—or only—way to get the job done: Applications of this waterproofing methodology can be found in bored tunnels and deep foundations where over-excavation isn’t possible, for example. Blindside techniques are also optimal when property lines and/or nearby structures limit excavation and access, such as “zero lot line” foundation walls.

This was the case at 1840 N. Highland Ave., a luxury multifamily complex constructed in the heart of Hollywood, California, steps away from the world-famous Hollywood Bowl and Hollywood Boulevard.  Typical of many projects in high-density, built-up areas, the 118-unit complex is sited on a tight lot, and extends three stories below grade to create space for mechanical systems and tenant parking; an ideal scenario for blindside waterproofing techniques.

As the schedule moved forward, it transpired that there were several unique complexities, which made the project even more challenging.

The entire lot was excavated to more than 30 feet below grade, with soldier piles, wood lagging, and rock bolts used to keep the surrounding soil in place.

“There were some real twists to the project, including two fault lines under the cantilever of the building and the water table, which sat at different levels,” says Josh Heidt, with Terra-Petra, the company contracted to provide waterproofing consulting services.

Terra-Petra brought in Epro Services, a Kansas-based waterproofing company with a long history of success on blindside jobs in the state, to provide a solution. Heidt says, “Epro has the kind of case history we were looking for from a manufacturer on a multi-faceted project like this.”

Construction began with a major earthmoving project.  The entire 8,144-square-foot lot was excavated to more than 30 feet below grade.  Soldier piles and wood lagging were used as a retention system, augmented by tiebacks and soil nails. On one wall, massive tubular steel rakers—more than three feet in diameter—were used to ensure that the foundation of the adjacent seven-story building stayed in place.

To ensure optimal waterproofing, the system had to seal tight despite the irregular substrate and needed to be durable, too. The structural walls would be placed with shotcrete, which would be applied directly to the membrane without a protection course.

The underslab barrier extends up the wall two feet higher than the water table. The mat of reinforcing steel will be encapsulated in the four-foot-thick foundation

The architect worked closely with the geotechnical consultant and the waterproofing supplier to ensure the specified system would perform as designed.  Architect Ronald Rosell, representing the project architect Arquitectonica, says “Epro helped us and the geotechnical consultant work through the issue regarding the north face of the building where the fault line divided the water table.”  He continues, “The fault acted like a subterranean waterfall, and Epro gave us recommendations for how best to prevent that hydrostatic pressure and constant flow of water from impacting the structure.”

The general contractor, Frymer Construction, was also brought into these discussions to ensure the design would be buildable.  “We collaborated with Terra-Petra regarding the usual qualifications, review of transitions, and fastening and drainage considerations,” says David Frymer, company president.

The bottom of the excavation was about 10 feet below the water table, so crews poured a “mud slab,” then installed the underslab waterproofing system:  Epro’s E.Protect+ Underslab, which features built-in layers of redundancy.  It’s achieved by combining different types of waterproofing materials to leverage the positive attributes of each, a technique they call “Redundant Field-Installed Composite Design.”

Tubular steel rakers more than three feet in diameter provide support for the lagging and simplify the detailing.

In this particular application, E.Protect+ Underslab was comprised of a layer of 16-mil HDPE thermoplastic membrane with heat-welded seams, over which the team spray-applied a 100-mil layer of polymer modified asphaltic membrane.  Finally, this was topped with an HDPE-reinforced bentonite sheet which will expand to seal any leaks that may develop in the future.

This triple system was installed across the slab and up the walls two feet higher than the historic high water table level.   Then the structural slab was poured, four feet thick with a double mat of reinforcing steel running 12 inches on center in both directions.

Above the water table, Arquitec-tonica specified E.Proformance Shoring, a blindside waterproofing system used for non-hydrostatic conditions. It’s comprised of a 30-mil HDPE dimpled drain mat installed against the lagging, which was then sprayed with a 60-mil layer of the same asphaltic membrane used in the underslab waterproofing.

The spray-applied coating is formulated so that the heat generated by curing concrete will chemically bond the product directly to the structural wall. The dimples in the drain mat also help prevent delamination between the membrane and the concrete.

E.Proformance was used all the way up to grade level, where it was transitioned to a hot rubber horizontal waterproofing system that was used to seal beneath the planters and the above-grade stucco wall system.

In total, the project used 70,000 sq. ft. of waterproofing.

EPS “geofoam,” reduces the effect of seismic movements on the building’s structure and create a smoother substrate for the waterproofing.

Experts say the key to quality in any blindside application is the ability to detail around the soil retention system.  This project used an ingenious solution to resolve that dilemma: A two-foot-thick layer of EPS “geofoam,” installed between the retaining wall and the shotcrete structural wall.

Provided by Insulfoam, this rigid insulation arrived in giant blocks and was installed between the retaining wall and the dimple membrane.  The geofoam will reduce the effect of seismic movements on the building’s structure and creates a smoother substrate for the waterproofing.

Crews fastened the geofoam directly to the lagging. Then the dimple drain sheet was fastened over the foam, with the waterproofing layer spray-applied to the dimple sheet. The same spray-applied product was also used to detail around the many pipe penetrations, the pits for elevators, and utilities.

“My experience with Epro has been outstanding,” says Mostafa Sobhi, president of BM Builders and the certified Epro applicator responsible for the installation. “Their quick turnaround in answering any concerns and providing details due to changing field conditions has been a huge factor on how jobs like this can be successful, while also maintaining schedules.”

Heidt reports that Epro representatives were “on the site a great deal of the time” to ensure the workmanship was flawless. Despite the high level of complexity and the presence of hydrostatic conditions, working closely with the project team enabled Epro to provide a 15-year no-dollar-limit warranty to the developer.

The project at 1840 N. Highland Ave. is scheduled for completion in 2019.

The 1840 N. Highland Ave. apartments are on schedule to be completed in 2019.  The development shows that despite the difficulties blindside work presents, with the right materials and know-how, contractors can get excellent results.

The Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division team will be exhibiting at the RCI Trade Show Exhibit in Houston

Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division Exhibits at RCI International Convention & Trade Show

The Terra-Petra Waterproofing Division team exhibited at the RCI International Convention & Trade Show at Houston’s George R. Brown Convention Center on March 24-27, 2018.

Our group of professionals provided information and further insight on our BUILDING ENVELOPE CONSULTING * ELECTRONIC LEAK DETECTION * CERTIFIED AIR & WATER TESTING  * INSPECTION & MONITORING services.


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The annual RCI, Inc. International Trade Show offers attendees the chance to meet and learn from representatives from over 130 manufacturers of roofing, waterproofing, and exterior wall products. 



Terra-Petra Waterproofing Team meets for continuous training with WPL Group distributors of Tyvek systems

Terra-Petra waterproofing team got together, October 18, 2017, for more continuous training by industry experts.  This latest training session was performed by the technical experts at WPL Group, distributors of Tyvek systems. Terra-Petra is continually gaining knowledge in all aspects of building envelop waterproofing and consulting, and becoming certified with many different systems and products.




Allen Matkins/UCLA Anderson – California Commercial Real Estate Survey


As provided the introduction to this survey, by John M. Tipton Partner, Real Estate Department Allen Matkins:

Allen Matkins and UCLA Anderson Forecast have partnered to create a Commercial Real Estate Survey and Index to better predict future California commercial rental and vacancy rates. This tool surveys supply-side participants – commercial developers and financiers of commercial development – for insights into their markets. The Survey and the resulting Index provide a measure of the commercial real estate supply-side participants’ view of current and future conditions. Since participants make investment actions based upon these views, it provides a leading indicator of changing supply conditions.

Allen Matkins sponsored this Survey to provide value to the industry. Partnered with UCLA Anderson Forecast, the leading independent economic forecast of both the U.S. and California economies for over 65 years, they have tapped the knowledge of the leading developers and financiers of real estate development in California to provide the best, clear-sighted forecast of the California commercial real estate industry. Read they Survey and Index here.

Terra-Petra Company Christmas Party 2016: Another Memory Maker!

Terra-Petra's CEO, Kevin Buchanan and VP/General Manager, Justin Conaway another memorable holiday party for the Terra-Petra team and family last Saturday night! The group gathered at Downtown Los Angeles' favorite Maso Malo (one of Kevn and Justin's favorite gathering places for the group over the years). 

"I was happy to see all of the people that have helped make Terra-Petra great in 2016 having so much fun. This party was a direct reflection of the growth and success that we have had all year long.  I would have to say that this was not only our biggest, but probably the best party we have had so far. I'm happy we can continue this tradition every year. It just gets bigger and better everytime." – Justin Conaway 

The Terra-Petra Founding Fathers

The Terra-Petra Founding Father Hugh Avery with Terra-Petra original crew, John Conaway, Richard McClanahan and David Lucero.

The Terra-Petra LA Office Crew.

The Terra-Petra LA Office CAD Crew.

CEO Kevin Buchanan shows off Terra-Petra bucks for the party raffle!

CEO Kevin Buchanan shows off Terra-Petra bucks for the party raffle!

CEO Kevin Buchanan with VP/GM Justin Conaway.

In Kein Buchanan We Trust!

In Kein Buchanan We Trust!

Terra-Petra Inspection Team

Terra-Petra Inspection Team with fearless leader Dan Valdez.

CEO Kevin Buchanan with the Terra-Petra Inspection Crew.

CEO Kevin Buchanan with the Terra-Petra Inspection Crew.

Terra-Petra Inspectors

Terra-Petra Management at their finest.

Terra-Petra VP/GM Justin Conaway with Inspector Supervisor, Daniel Valdez.

VP/GM Justin Conaway with Inspector Supervisor, Daniel Valdez.

The Terra-Petra LA Office Crew.

The Terra-Petra LA Office CAD Crew.

Party goods!

Maso Malo Buffet for the Terra-Petra party goers.

Maso Malo Buffet for the Terra-Petra party goers.

LA Unified School District Awards Terra-Petra Certification of Small Business Enterprise (SBE)

The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) issued Terra-Petra an SBE certificate effective October 26, 2016.

The company's SBE status lausdcertificationofsbeis recognized for NAICS codes:

541620 & 541330 through October 2018.

To maintain a valid SBE Certificate after three years with LAUSD, Terra-Petra must also renew its self-certification with LAUSD or register with the Small Business Administration before the SBE certification expiration date referenced expires.

Letter of approval.

Terra-Petra attends Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite®

Terra-Petra Environmental Engineering, once again, joined up with the ENVIRONMENTAL LAW CONFERENCE AT YOSEMITE® -October 20-23 at the Tenaya Lodge (“The Gateway to Yosemite”). The conference is nationally recognized as the largest and most prestigious gathering in California of leaders in environmental, land use, and natural resources law. Here are a few of the highlights.

Left to right: The Great Expo Hall of Tenaya Lodge! Terra-Petra exhibition meeting table; Gorgeous view from the Lodge; The crowd waits to hear Senator Barbara Boxer; Terra-Petra's Justin Conaway and Kevin Buchanan, on their way out to Fresno Dome; Working up to the top of the Dome and the beautiful view from above; Justin takes a tumble down, but rest assured he is doing fine. Terra-Petra's team had a fantasic time and as always, The Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite was an exceptional event for educational and networking opportunities within the environmental engineering and law industries. 

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