What are retaining walls?
Retaining walls are structures used to provide stability and are commonly used to control soil banks. The structural engineering design of retaining walls varies across Australia. A geotechnical assessment is needed for all retaining walls, particularly those in clay sites. Drainage considerations are undertaken by the design structural engineering to ensure long term performance in retaining walls.
Types of retaining walls structural engineers design
A Gabion wall is a simple design and consists of rough cut stones or randomly collected stones of similar size, encased in a wire basket or mesh cage. They are easy to assemble on site, requiring only a specific stacking order to achieve stability and desired result. Gabion walls allow perfect sub soil drainage of the soil that is being retained.
In-Situ Concrete Walls
An engineer designed, concrete retaining wall can suit a variety of project needs. Since the construction of a concrete wall can be done by just about any builder. In-situ concrete walls may be cheaper to build except for their form work, and are more flexible, depending on the type of soil retaining required to be achieved.
Gravity Structures – Limestone Retaining Walls
The gravity wall depends upon its weight to retaining soil. Limestone retaining walls are a type of gravity walls commonly used in the Perth Region. The interlocking blocks that are used to construct the limestone retaining wall can be either natural blocks or reconstituted limestone blocks. Limestone retaining walls can be used in a wide range of applications and have a long durability. The type of retained soil is especially useful if required to supports imposed actions such as light vehicle surcharge loading.
Panel & Post Retaining Walls
Also known as concrete sleeper retainer walls, usually consist of concrete posts or steel beams cast into a concrete footings. The retaining is achieved with concrete panels inserted between reinforced concrete post or galvanised I beams. This type of retaining wall is easy and quick to install in sand sites. Also this type of retaining wall isn’t recommend within 1km from the ocean and to ensure durability, is it critical that the steel I-beams are galvanised.
Concrete Block Retaining Wall Systems
Retaining wall using concrete masonry blocks are straightforward to construct and since there is a wide range of colours and textures available, there are a range of options for retaining walls, planter boxes and feature walls. Concrete masonry retaining walls are typically constructed in Australia using 150 series blocks or 200 series blocks.
Structural engineering is often recommended for:
- Retaining walls over 1m in height
- Where the retaining wall is supporting a heavy load
- Complex ground conditions
- To fulfil council regulations i.e. Development Application, Works Orders, Emergency Works
Why choose Engineering Sydney for your retaining walls?
Engineering Sydney structural engineers specialise in retaining wall design, meaning we deliver quality retaining wall design solutions and never over-price. We pride ourselves with developing innovative, efficient designs for retaining wall repairs which again, focuses on saving the clients budget. Contact us now to discuss our retaining wall design services.