Editor’s Note: In the February 2009 issue, a retaining walls article included photos with heavy construction equipment. A reader asked a question about this and an answer is provided by the wall builder.
Comment RE: Heavy equipment
From: George S.
Posted: Jan. 28, 2010
I have seen these reinforced walls being used a lot in landscaping projects but it’s amazing to see how this wall can support the heavy equipment surcharge. What was the amount of live load surcharge considered for the heavy equipment?
From: Nick Jansson, P.E., LEED, AP, Soil Retention Systems Inc., Carlsbad, Calif.
Typically, we add no additional surcharge for heavy equipment. [This] wall system was designed with enough form capacity to be built properly and is often used for applications beyond landscaping, such as supporting roadways, houses, hospitals, and schools. To safely support these kinds of applications, we have developed a system with the ability to build concurrently with grading. (e.g., a fully loaded Caterpillar 657E scraper with an operating weight of 271,270 lbs). The live load resulting from construction equipment is accounted for in the system development design and is not necessary in the structural design.
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