Geotechnical Engineering

Earthworks specification

Construction frequently involves excavation and movement of material and this makes earthworks one of the most routine civil engineering operations. Although normally associated with extensive structures, like earth dams or highway embankments, the majority of earthworks operations are connected with minor building construction.

Earthworks operations involve the removal of overburden to strike structurally capable earth or soil, excavation for basements and other underground structures, and to compact fill materials to support structures. For example, buildings with large footprints or constructed on sloping sites require ‘cut and fill’ earthworks to provide level working platforms.

Prior to carrying out earthworks operations, a site investigation is necessary to assess local ground conditions. If locally available material is to be used, the soil will be analysed to see whether it can achieve the strength and compaction parameters needed for the design.

RSA Geotechnics has provided advice and assistance with the design and specification for a variety of earthworks operations including: the construction of large warehouse schemes; distribution depots; sorting centres; road embankments; and parking areas. We seek to achieve optimum earthwork and foundation solutions, and minimum off-site removal of soils.

Our earthworks and ground improvement experience includes:

  • determination of soil compaction parameters
  • determination of acceptability criteria
  • lime and cement stabilisation
  • preparation of earthworks specification
  • advice on settlement characteristics
  • supervision and monitoring of construction stage

RSA Geotechnics has conducted many ground investigations designed to establish earthworks control for both natural and stabilised soils to provide a suitable and stable engineered fill material. We can also supervise and monitor the construction phase to ensure the fill material complies with the specification.