Since 2018, R.E. Warner & Associates, Inc. has been in the process of upgrading a conveyor system for loading large cargo boats in the Flats of Cleveland.  We were involved in the project early to help ensure structural adequacy of the existing system during the design of the new system. For the new system we have provided preliminary process layout, cost estimating, project management and design work including structural, architectural, piping, HVAC, and electrical for a new retractable conveyor, foundations, and support.


  • Fast track design and construction schedule.
  • Uniquely shaped conveyor system requiring a complex support structure.
  • Construction had to be ongoing while the facility was fully functioning, adding traffic maintenance challenges.
  • Work with the Client and OEM to balance needs in our design. Maintenance access was a priority for the client, while very strict deflection tolerances (vertical and lateral) and support locations were a requirement by the conveyor manufacturer.
  • Tie the new structure into an existing building but transfer minimal force.
  • The foundations had to be designed in a way that would limit demolition of the existing dock and pavement in order to maintain the traffic mentioned previously.
  • Since this conveyor can move, or “boom out”, it introduced several loading scenarios on the structure.
  • Over 400 load combinations were considered in the analysis.