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Saguaro, California

A state of the art wastewater treatment plant commissioned an artist to design this polymethyl methacrylate Saguaro sculpture. Each segment of the cactus was meant to indicate a different phase in the wastewater treatment process. The concept was that the translucent Saguaro cactus would appear like wastewater, and therefore could not show hardware or connections. The segments were proposed to be connected with an optical silicone caulk. Because the caulk could not be relied on over time to resist the stresses due to the calculated lateral loads, JBSE proposed providing a central hollow "spinal" column, to be used to pass a post-tensioning tendon. The resulting design was extremely economical and effective.

Artist  Su-Chen Hung
Contractor Philip Dow
Photographer Philip Dow


structural engineers

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