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drainage from around a retaining wall

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by jayman99, Oct 13, 2006.

  1. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,872

    I agree with this. I think this is the best statement made on the entire thread.

    Call a local SRW supplier and find out who they recommend for an engineer. Many engineers work freelance. So you can just call them direct and pay them a nominal fee to come out and assess your wall and make recommendations. They will do a series of tests, analyze your soil, drainage, compaction, etc. and then they'll be able to make much better recommendations than any of us here can.

    It would have been nice if the wall had been engineered when it was first installed. Then it probably wouldn't be failing now.
  2. jayman99

    jayman99 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    OK...I give!!

    I called the local Pavestone dealer and he gave me some engineers to work with. I called one and he will be out next Monday. I'll let you guys know what he says.

  3. jayman99

    jayman99 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    OK the engineer is coming next week. I think ROCKSET is right. I need to shift responsibility for this wall to someone else. My question is should the engineer have insurance or be bonded so if there is a failure he will be able to absorb the expense? What about the landscape company that actually does the repair? What do I ask them to be sure I am shifting responsibility to someone that has the financial backing to handle it?

  4. AGLA

    AGLA LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,776

    I think that you will find that a licensed structural engineer (make sure that is what he is) is required by law to carry a certain amount of insurance. Check the professional licensing board in your state.

    Ask your landscaper for copies of certificates of insurance.
  5. RockSet N' Grade

    RockSet N' Grade LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,454

    Jayman, good for you in getting an engineer. I believe that is the correct first step, after all if you are sick and need medical help, you go to a doctor don't you? Same thing here.....an engineer worth his salt will give you a diagnosis and plan of attack, and then you can intelligently decide your next step.
  6. Mike33

    Mike33 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,649

    Yes good advise this thread has been debated for months.
  7. Uranus

    Uranus LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Mass
    Messages: 1,624

    What if you bought a few more plastic chairs and used them to hold up the wall. I bet they would hold the weight of the wall and any water behind it too.:laugh: :laugh: :laugh: Sorry my friend, I couldn't resist. Best of luck on you adventure installing the drainage
  8. jayman99

    jayman99 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    Thanks Williams.....you're right. I think the plastic chair is the only thing holding it up!!!!!!!!!!
  9. jayman99

    jayman99 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    Mike, yes, this problem has been going on for too long.

    For the record, I did have a highly recommended structural engineer come by and take a look last OCTOBER. He spent most of his time telling me how poorly my wall was built (funny, but I had a sneaky suspicion from the way it is falling down that it was not built properly and I'm not even an engineer).

    As far as fixing the problem goes....he started talking about pounding steel sheet pilings into the ground. It sounded like he was only interested in recommending the most high dollar solution. He did not give me specifics on the projected cost, but I got the impression that his solution was going to cost me $100,000.

    Hopefully the guy that is coming tomorrow will be different, since he is an engineer and a landscaper. I hoping he will give me a plan that I can follow myself and an estimate of how much he would charge. I don't mind paying for someone's services if they will help me find a solution.
  10. jayman99

    jayman99 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    Hi guys,

    Here's the latest update.
    The guy that was supposed to be an engineer came out and took a look at my wall this week. It turns out that he is not a licensed engineer, but has a university degree in landscape design.

    He liked my idea of terracing the yard with two walls in place of the one failing wall.

    Here is the rough estimates he provided to do either a segmented wall or a rock veneer wall.

    Segmental Wall:

    Existing Wall Demolition: $ 8,000.00
    General Site work: $ 5,500.00
    New Wall Installation: $ 20,460.00
    New Wall Cap: $ 900.00
    Stairwell Construction: $ 3,500.00
    Site Repair: $ 4,500.00
    Professional Fees: $2,500.00

    ANALYSIS TOTAL: $ 43,360.00

    Cast in place with rock veneer wall:

    Existing Wall Demolition: $ 8,000.00
    General Site work: $ 5,500.00
    New Wall Installation
    - Foundation $ 13,970.00
    - Masonry Construction $ 16,706.00
    Site Repair: $ 4,500.00

    ANALYSIS TOTAL: $ 51,176.00

    Needless to say, I was a little surprised with how high his estimate was and I'll be again looking for a licensed engineer.


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