U.S. Naval Base Guantanamo Bay Pier C Replacement

The U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay is the oldest overseas military installation. Located on the southeast corner of Cuba, the base is approximately 400 miles from Miami. The U.S. Navy planned to demolish Pier C, a fuel pier and access ramp constructed in 1929, and replace it with a new single-deck fuel pier, ramp, and independent mooring structures. The project also included planned improvements to the causeway and roadway.

S&ME provided a geotechnical exploration of the Pier C site. A  truck-mounted CME-55 drill rig conducted soil test borings.  Five additional borings occurred over water by mounting the rig on a Navy YC barge. This proved quite an engineering challenge. To reach depths of 120 ft. below the water line, the team utilized mud-rotary drilling techniques. The team also performed split-spoon sampling with standard penetration testing in general accordance with ASTM D 1586. In addition, S&ME collected two undisturbed Shelby-tube samples in general accordance with ASTM D 1587.


  • Geotechnical exploration and testing of naval base pier
  • Geotechnical recommendations on earthwork, seismic, foundations and pavement