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Next Up, Retaining Walls

andyzee

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So, have bit of a hill on my property. Had a lot of trees until I chopped them down. Now I want to rip out the stumps and put in a series of retaining walls. Would appreciate any advice/past experience stories. Slope is pretty steep, quick guess, 35 degrees. About 10-12 feet high and 15 feet deep. I'm planning on putting in about 3-4 staggered retaining walls, taking into consideration drainage to make sure water runs off and not under wall. Then plan on planting vegetation on the terraces that will be created. Following is a pic of my little slope:

IMG_1988.jpg
 

drjeff

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I'd have a bit of concern about potentially compromising the root structure in the excavation of the terrace levels for both that big tree at the top of the hill behind the fence in your neighbors yard and also that decent sized, non cut tree to the left of the picture mid-slope.
 

Puck it

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I agree with the above. I would not terrace. I would put in one retaining wall at the bottom with like Belgarde system about 4 feet high and then just remove the stumps and plant then mulch.
 

Nick

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I'm interested in seeing how this plays out. I have a hill behind my house and always wanted to build a retaining wall.
 

andyzee

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Interesting height for the stumps!!! Get a backhoe, is my piece of advice.


Left the stumps that high on purpose. 1. to grab on to as climbing up and down slope (temporary) 2. when I'm ready to rip them out, was planning on cutting roots and figured higher stumps would give me more leverage for pulling them out.
 

andyzee

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I'd have a bit of concern about potentially compromising the root structure in the excavation of the terrace levels for both that big tree at the top of the hill behind the fence in your neighbors yard and also that decent sized, non cut tree to the left of the picture mid-slope.

In each case, each have their own roots which I have no plans of touching. The only place terrace walls would be going is where you presently see stumps. Only excavation I would be planning is to dig drench for walls. Once walls are in, then it's a matter of back filling with soil.
 

MR. evil

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In my professional opinion this project should be designed by a licensed civil engineer. Depending on the retaining wall Mfr they very well may engineer the walls, drainage & geotextile fabric free of charge. In MA or CT there is no way any local building official would grant a permit for what you want to do without signed and sealed engineering drawings.
 

MR. evil

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What is that metal structure in low lower left hand corner of the picture? Kind of looks like an electrical transformer or vault.
 

o3jeff

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There's a lot of stumps to dig out by hand and the roots are probably intertwined with each other. Are you going to get one of those small excavators to dig them out?

Also once you start digging all the stumps and roots out your going to loosen all the soil and loose you solid footing for the wall base.

I'm sure you probably have a place like this near by http://washingtonconcrete.com/ I would stop by and show them some pictures with dimensions and go over what you plan to do and get their opinion cause it looks like there is some height and steepness there so you're going to have some weight behind behind that wall.
 

andyzee

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Update: Checked with town, need permit for anything 18" above the ground, I might start on it going along those lines, 18" or less, see how it works out. If issues encountered then will look at permit and going higher. Regardless of what I do, will probably just cut stomps down and leave roots.

o3jeff, with regard to neighbor, working on getting him to cut tree. I purchased this house and moved in weekend before Sandy. You know how much time we spend looking at that tree as the winds blew? :-( He'd love to cut it down, but scared of cost. hmmm, persuasion LOL
 

o3jeff

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So you can do 2 or 3 walls up the hill as long as they each don't exceed 18" each?

Probably leaving the roots in is the smart thing to do for now so the hill doesn't run down in a heavy rain. From looking at the pic is that your side yard/driveway?
 
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