6Construction of Geosynthetic Reinforced Soil (GRS) Walls

Geosynthetic reinforced soil (GRS) walls can be constructed anywhere a retaining wall is deemed warranted and practical. If the foundation soil is too weak to allow safe construction of a GRS wall, ground improvement may be needed before construction. Various ground improvement techniques have proven to be effective, and they have been presented in the literature, including recent books by Kirsch and Bell (2013) and Nicholson (2015). Typical applications of GRS walls include embankment walls, temporary or permanent widening or diversion embankment walls, earth walls on steep mountain slopes, slide stabilization walls, rock fall barrier walls, bridge abutment walls, small dams, sound barrier walls, and various urban earth wall projects where a sudden change in elevation is needed due to space constraints or aesthetics considerations.

This chapter addresses the construction of GRS walls, including construction procedures and general construction guides. Many types of GRS walls have been constructed (see Figure 3.23). This chapter, however, focuses on four common types of GRS walls: concrete block GRS walls, wrapped‐face GRS walls, full‐height precast panel facing GRS walls, and timber facing GRS walls.

6.1 Construction Procedure

This section describes typical construction procedures for four common types of GRS walls: concrete block GRS walls, wrapped‐face GRS walls, full‐height precast panel facing GRS walls, and ...

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