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ASCE San Francisco Trip - Fall 2018


My name is Anisha. I was one of the 22 people who had the golden opportunity to visit San Francisco with the valuable efforts from Mr. Bruce Dorfman & ASCE. This is a collection of my personal experiences on the sites we visited over a course of 3 days. I would love to have your feedback!

The Bay Area

The Bay Area is generally accepted to include nine counties namely: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, Sonoma, and San Francisco. Home to approximately 7.68 million people Bay Area contains many cities, towns, airports, and associated regional, state, and national parks, connected by a complex multimodal transportation network. It is mainly split into 5 regions as seen in the figure below.Discovery of gold in California attracted a flood of treasure seekers, many using ports in the Bay Area as an entry point.

Challenges in Bay area for Civil Engineers

  1. The region is known for the complexity of its landforms, the result of millions of years of tectonic plate movements. Because the Bay Area is crossed by six major earthquake faults, the region is particularly exposed to hazards presented by large earthquakes.

  2. The presence of ‘Bay mud’ is another challenge. This is believed to have formed by natural processes like deposition from rivers and glacial cycles. Also some part of San Francisco is a reclaimed area,meaning formed by filling. Even now when excavations are done, shipwrecks are found from below the ground.

This factor is important because these soft soils amplify ground shaking. Also due to poor soil strength, most buildings are on piles which adds to the complexity of projects.




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