In December, 2003, as part of its modernization and expansion program, Pemex began a reconfiguration project for the Lázaro Cardenas Refinery. Tradeco Infraestructura executed the initial part of this great project which consisted in building platforms where the processing plants were erected on, as well as an exclusive access road for the refinery. The platforms were built on land composed of loose fine sands and very soft clays, with low-shear strength. The job required the application of preloads up to 11.48 ft in height to increase soil resistance and lessen settling. Likewise, vertical drains were installed, which in addition to reducing consolidation time, made uniform the evolution of settlements by controlling drainage conditions.
On the other hand, for the construction of the access road that crosses swampy land with differing vegetation densities and water levels, the use of geotextiles and meshes to separate soft clays from the fill was required, thus allowing the stabilization of the roadway. To ensure the necessary compacting level, the placement of witness marks along and across the road monitored the settling behavior.