Company uses foam to lift uneven sidewalk panels on Monroe’s municipal campus

Keron Bartley, left, the crew leader of Pinnacle Concrete Solutions, repairs uneven sidewalks outside Edith Wheeler Memorial Library with Tyler Weber, a technician at the company.

MONROE, CT — A Pinnacle Concrete Solutions truck was parked in the rear parking lot of Edith Wheeler Memorial Library one recent Wednesday afternoon and, further up the sidewalk, two crew members drilled small holes in uneven areas to lift sunken panels, stabilizing it underneath before patching over the holes.

Town Engineer James DiMeo said the work addressed trip hazards caused by uneven sidewalks. First Selectman Ken Kellogg and Public Works Director Chris Nowacki said the project was about preventative maintenance and safety.

Pinnacle Concrete Solutions, a division of Spray Tech Insulation, a family-owned business with a fleet of trucks in Cheshire, worked on sidewalks outside the Council Chambers’ side entrance of Monroe Town Hall and along the sidewalk surrounding the library.

Tyler Weber drills a small hole into an uneven sidewalk panel outside Edith Wheeler Memorial Library, so Pinnacle Concrete Solutions foam can be applied.

“This is a form of spray foam that takes longer to harden, so it can spread,” said Marc Goodman, owner of the company. “We can lift almost anything.”

By working on the sidewalks one small section at a time, Goodman said library patrons, Town Hall visitors and employees were able to carry on their business without disruption.

DiMeo said Library Director Nicole Cignoli had considered including the project to repair the sidewalks in her budget. “We were able to find a cost effective solution,” he said.

When enough sidewalk panels are involved, DiMeo said raising the sunken panels is more cost effective than replacing damaged ones and putting in fill to level the foundation beneath.

The town paid Pinnacle Concrete Solutions $5,000 for the day to even out and caulk the sidewalks around Edith Wheeler Memorial Library and Town Hall.

“This is another example of town staff working diligently in being excellent stewards of taxpayer dollars,” Kellogg said.

“This will last 50, 60 years at least, because it’s polyurethane plastic,” Goodman said of the repairs. “It’s very environmentally friendly.”

No jackhammering

Pinnacle Solutions uses a polyurethane foam to fill in sunken areas beneath concrete and lift panels to make it even.

Spray Tech Insulation added the Pinnacle Concrete Solutions division five years ago.

“This is very prevalent in Florida, California, the mid-West, anywhere with a lot of concrete and pools,” Goodman said, adding his company is the only one to use foam to lift and repair concrete in Connecticut.

Pinnacle Concrete Solutions has done projects ranging from less than $2,000 to its biggest job, a $500,050 floor repair at a nursing home in Mamaronek, N.Y.

The company repairs garage floors, pool decks, sidewalks, showroom floors and recently fixed a hangar entrance at the New England Air Museum, according to Goodman. Projects were completed in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

“We can also do seawalls. We did one in Darien last summer,” Goodman said. “This is so much less money than ripping and replacing with new concrete.”

He recalled one major job where half the showroom at Hoffman Lexus in East Hartford had sunk four inches. The business wanted to replace the flooring.

Pinnacle Concrete Solutions is a division of Spray Tech Insulation.

“I said, ‘why don’t you want us to lift the floor up?’ and they said, ‘you can do that?'” Goodman recalled.

In three or four days, his company used 3,700 pounds of polyurethane foam to lift 3,000 square feet of the floor without any jackhammering or replacement, according to Goodman.

Of the Monroe job, he said, “we can do it for about half the price. There’s no jackhammering and we’re in and out in a day — and once we patch the holes, no one will know we were there.”

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