When Are Geotechnical Site Investigations Needed?

by | Feb 21, 2022

We could fill a multitude of blogs with the comprehensive answer to this question! Geotechnical site investigations are required for an astounding amount of projects. Whether you’re planning some form of remediation, construction or structural alterations, a preliminary site investigation will probably be necessary.

We have a word limit in mind, however, to ensure our blogs remain in Google’s good books! So, in this case, the Borehole team will provide stand-out examples where ground investigations are required. Examples that you may not have thought about previously…

New Roads

It’s fair to say that the UK are pretty reliant on our whopping 262,300 miles of paved roads. To the point where a substantial portion of the British economy depends on the timely movement of goods. In order for this to work, roads must be up to standard. This is something we take for granted until a pothole appears. Or until major roadworks interrupt our journey.

Slips, potholes or even sinkholes pose a huge risk to our roads without thorough geotechnical site investigations. As long as you provide yourself with a full picture of the ground’s characteristics, these problems are easily avoided.

Sea Defences

In some areas of the UK – the North-East, in particular – the erosion rate of the coastline is around 2 metres per year! With this, rather alarming, fact in mind, a great deal of money is funnelled into the construction and maintenance of coastal defences, such as sea walls.

As you can probably imagine, these kinds of structures leave very little room for error. Contractors must be absolutely certain of the underlying geology and ground conditions before any work is carried out. Geotechnical site investigations are, understandably, paramount in this scenario. This is to ensure ground conditions and geological strata are appropriate for either the current or planned sea defences.

Basement Constructions 

When living in urban settings especially, space comes at a premium. Whilst adding floors is one way of creating more space – hence the creation of skyscrapers – basements are another great option! Businesses can utilise basements for additional storage or even another shop floor. Personal basements, on the other hand, can be used for anything from bedrooms to games rooms.

As expected, basement construction usually requires extensive excavation works. If a large quantity of ground is being moved in any way, however, a (you guessed it!) geotechnical site investigation should be carried out. This is necessary to determine the stability of the soil, which helps to clarify appropriate foundation depths. It’s also carried out in order to examine the site’s slope conditions. You don’t, for example, want to install an expensive basement, only to discover structural issues a little later on.

Far from an unnecessary extra expense, geotechnical site investigations are a crucial component in guaranteeing the structural longevity of any proposed project. If you would like to find out more about the services we offer, please get in touch! You can contact Borehole Solutions today on 01733 200 501.