Two case studies of failed brick veneer provide an education in poor workmanship and an opportunity for creative architecture. CASE STUDY #1 "It was the finest example of poor workmanship I've ever seen," masonry consultant Gary Chynoweth says about the three-story office building he was asked to inspect in early 1991. The 15- year-old building was of steel-frame construction with concrete floor decks, block backup walls, and brick veneer. The building was plagued with water-penetration problems. But leaking walls weren't the only problem. The building's brick veneer began to spall, effloresce, buckle, and crack. The problem became serious when brick began to fall out of a window arch. Chynoweth was called in to investigate the problems. The examination revealed several major problems: 1. The building was constructed with no expansion joints. 2. Some areas of the wall cavity contained up to 2 feet of mortar droppings on top of the shelf angles. This prevented water from reaching the flashing and exiting the wall. 3. Extensive mortar bridging at the wall ties allowed water to migrate from the exterior to the interior wythe. 4. Too few weep holes had been installed and some had been mortared shut to keep out wasps. If proper details had been prepared for the original construction, these problems could have been avoided. CASE STUDY #2 Built in 1956, the six identical 8-story buildings, owned by the Buffalo Municipal Housing Authority (BMHA), were typical of many public housing complexes-unpretentious and architecturally plain. The buildings were constructed of cast-in-place concrete columns, reinforced concrete spandrel beams, concrete block backup walls, and brick veneer. When cracks appeared and began to grow on the brick veneer in 1989, Kideney Architects, Buffalo, N.Y., was hired to study the problems. Three major problems were found: too few wall ties had been used; no expansion joints had been installed; and lintels were solidly bolted to the structure. Although installing new brick veneer carried the highest initial cost, its lower maintenance costs made it the most economical option in the long run.