Retaining Walls

Retaining Wall Kalamazoo

What is a retaining wall?

A retaining wall is a structure that is designed to hold back soils from an area that would be naturally sloped. Retaining walls are often used to bind soils between two or more elevations, all the while serving to hold back the natural forces of gravity and soil erosion.

What products are commonly used in retaining wall construction?

Common construction materials for retaining walls include: boulders, railroad ties, pressure treated timber, poured concrete, concrete block and sheet pile. At Landscaping Plus, we can design walls to meet your specific needs. When and where possible, we seek to use local suppliers for material.

What constitutes a well-built retaining wall?

A well thought out and designed wall will lead to a well built wall. With proper planning, a home owner or commercial client can achieve maximum use of their real estate through the construction of retaining walls. A retaining wall can be used to flatten or build up unusable slopes to level areas for parking, lawns, patios and pools.

Why is it important to hire a reputable contractor to build your wall?

A well built wall will cost you thousands of dollars so it is important that the job is done only once. While the aesthetics of a wall are important, the “business end” or backside of the wall is far more important to its success or failure. A beautiful wall isn’t so beautiful if it is lying at the bottom of a slope after failure. A properly constructed wall must have a solid compacted footing, drain tile, porous aggregate for back fill, geo grid ( for concrete block construction) and geo grid and “dead men” ( for timber wall construction). In the planning stage for a wall, other considerations such as native soil types, slopes, surcharges ( extra weight above the wall, ex cars) and setbacks come into play so it is important that your contractor is experienced and has a solid knowledge of the material used for construction, as well as a good relationship with the material vendor. In some cases, local building codes will call for engineered stamped drawings.

What can I expect to pay for a retaining wall?

Retaining wall pricing can vary greatly due to a number of factors. These factors can include: site access, native soils, slopes, wall height, material used, complexity of the wall (stairs, angles, tiers, grade change, etc…). As a general rule, boulder walls tend to be quite pricy due to higher labor costs, while timber and concrete block walls can be more competitively priced with each other, depending on size and material used.

How can a retaining wall increase the value of my property?

Retaining walls are a great investment. From an aesthetic point of view, retaining walls can really add a great amount of curb appeal to your property. From a practical stand point, retaining walls maximize usable square footage by allowing unusable slopes to be transformed into level areas for parking, lawn, patios, pools, firepits and more.

 

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