The use of steel sheet piles, box piles and high modulus piles in basements provide a factory quality product of known structural integrity that fulfil the requirements for minimum construction time. Not only can piles be driven rapidly in the majority of soil types, they are also capable of being loaded immediately, which is a distinct advantage in fast-track construction projects.
By adopting sheet piling and/or box piling for basement walls, construction space is minimised and because the wall is installed prior to soil excavation, adjacent buildings can be more reliably supported, thereby preventing potential subsidence. Piles can be driven close up to a land boundary; this means that land usage can be maximised. As wall construction time is less than for concrete walls, associated site costs can be reduced.
In this environmentally conscious age, steel sheet piles have the added benefit because they can be easily extracted at the end of their purpose and can be re-used or re-cycled.
These advantages and others can be summarised as follows:
- Construction is significantly quicker than that for reinforced concrete walls.
- Permanent sheet piling is a narrow form of construction, which can be installed close up to the boundary of the site maximising usable site space.
- Steel sheet piles are suitable for all soil types.
- There is no requirement to excavate for wall foundations.
- There is no disturbance of existing ground unlike that for bored concrete piling.
- The steel components are factory quality as opposed to site quality.
- Steel sheet piles can easily be made aesthetically pleasing.
- Steel sheet piles can be placed in advance of other works.
- Immediate load-carrying capacity is present.
- Steel sheet piles can be used as curtain walling to contain the working site.
- They are a sustainable product as they are extracted easily and minimise waste.
Detailed information regarding steel intensive basements can be found in SCI Publication P275.
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