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Ground Testing – Why It’s Important

Posted by Paul Ackling 20th Nov 2014

When first starting the planning work for a new home on the Northern Beaches, it can often be overwhelming to learn the amount of preliminary items that need to be completed before work can begin. These include detail survey works, structural engineering, town planning reports, stormwater plans and sometimes, where required, flood or bushfire reports. With all of these “required” items needing to be completed, making sure a thorough geotechnical report is carried out is often something that’s overlooked. Sometimes this can be seen as an unnecessary expense. What could go wrong?

The phrase, “knowledge is power” is very relevant in this case. Having the knowledge of the sites ground conditions while in the planning stages gives us, as the builder, the power to provide the best possible design. The ground information is used by the structural engineer to design the strongest, most effective foundations for the home. Then we, as the builder, can make accurate allowances for the excavation and ground works before starting work on the site.

That’s the real key, before starting work on the site. As decisions that are made while in the planning stages are far more cost effective and cheaper than when workers are on site. Summed up, this means that when planned well, the correct style of machinery is used on site which has a positive impact on the time taken to complete the works, the quality of the works and also the cost of the works.

It is also worth noting that we, at Peninsula Homes, use a fully qualified and local Northern Beaches geotechnical engineer for all our works. Local expertise and experience often provides additional insight over and above the results of the ground testing. This, coupled with the solid working relationship we have built up over time with the geotechnical engineer, provides ongoing support through the ground works process as we require it. Ground testing for your building project: too valuable to overlook!

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