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[SEAOC] Re: [SEAOC] retaining walls

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HARRISENGR(--nospam--at) wrote:
>       I would appreciate information on alternate types of retaining walls
> for heights above fifteen feet. Cantilever types have footings that are too
> wide . Caisson and grade beam types are expensive. I have seen systems that
> stack concrete pieces back at an angle but are they calculated?  Any other
> ideas will be appreciated. Thanks in advance.

The concrete pieces that you refer to have different names, but the ones I've 
used the most are criblock.  I don't have their design manuel here at home, 
but I can look it up tommorrow at the office for phone numbers and addresses 
if you'd like.

The system definately needs to be calculated... as a gravity wall... very 
similar to a gravity dam.  The prefab concrete elements are about 5 feet long 
and interlock to create short spans parallel to the face of the wall.  The 
depth back into the slope is dependant on the height and therefore can require 
extensive excavation at the base of the wall.  This could be a drawback.

Another system I used for a sub-T parking garage that I did that was poured 
from the top down, was tiebacks into the soil behind the wall.  On a hillside, 
these could be used permanently with the input of a soils/geologist.  I had to 
remove the steel rods after the parking slabs were poured as the tiebacks went 
into the adjacent streets and Public works didn't want to have to deal with 
them later..

And then I've also use concrete block counterfort walls.  they also require 
more excavation at the base as the footing is mostly at the heel.  

All systems have worked, but the economics have to be looked at with each 
specific site...

Steve Privett