The main role of a geotechnical engineer is to ensure buildings stand tall at the ground level. Many factors can upend a property’s stability, including soil density, water flow patterns, and more. Geotechnical engineering is important for community planning and construction; without it, buildings could lean, settle, and eventually collapse as the earth below them shifts.
The Role of a Geotechnical Engineer
A geotechnical engineer is responsible for signing off on a project’s feasibility. To do so, the geotechnical engineer, or “geotech,” must run a series of tests and evaluations to ensure the land can support the proposed construction. This starts with a site investigation, an exhaustive check of factors that could impact both the short- and long-term success of your project.
When you hire a geotechnical engineer, they will investigate:
- The composition of your foundation soils, including the material, bedrock, rocks, and soil layers beneath the proposed construction locations
- The geological and geotechnical feasibility of your site and relation to surrounding sites
- Groundwater conditions and water flow paths and how they affect the development
Much of this information is obtained from a soils test, which breaks down the characteristics of the site soil. This helps you understand whether or not the earth around your site can support the load and scope of your development needs.
The Importance of Geotechnical Engineering
Geotechnical engineering is important because it helps prevent complications before they happen. Without the advanced calculations and testing provided by a geotech, buildings could see significant damage after an earthquake, slope stability shifting, ongoing settlement, or other effects.
Geotechnical engineers should be brought on during the early planning stages of any construction project. Doing so will help ward off potential hazards or problems later during of even long after construction. Good developers and contractors know: It’s best to gain the expertise and advice only a geotech can provide from exploration through construction.
In addition to ensuring your construction plans are feasible, a geotechnical engineer can guide you on water mitigation, building placement, and how surrounding structures such as walkways and parking lots will affect your project. All in all, the importance of geotechnical engineering comes down to planning and reduction of risk pertaining to the development and long-term investment of the project.
See the Role of a Geotechnical Engineer in Action with Central Geotech
Get started with your site evaluation today with the team from Central Geotechnical Services. We have the experience and know-how to help your new construction start off on the right foot, so contact us to learn more and bring a geotechnical engineer to your project.