Reinforced Soil Slope at Lowes

Posted in: VIDEOS, Mirafi, Monster Walls
By Joseph Kowalski and Doug Blackburn
Dec 18, 2008 - 1:20:50 AM

The new Lowe’s Home Improvement Warehouse in Milford, Ohio required a 44-foot retaining wall.  They also requested that the on-site lean clays be used as the backfill for the new wall.  For a nearly-vertical, 44-foot high retaining wall the use of lean clay backfill could be disastrous!  Most designers rightly specify only select backfills for nearly-vertical retaining walls that high.

To avoid problems, we designed this “grade change structure” as a Reinforced Soil Slope (RSS) instead of a Retaining Wall.  This required that the RSS be battered back back at least 20 degrees from vertical, and also required more geogrid.  The elevation changes, the large sweeping curves and the separation of the walls were a challenge to the design team and the contractor.


After some design and construction challenges were overcome, the Client received a stunning 32,000 SF reinforced soil slope that is up to 44 feet high.  Design considerations included: primary geogrid reinforcement, secondary geogrid reinforcement, effect of pH on the geogrids, facing stability, global stability analyses, and collection and removal of ground water and water entering the wall face.


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