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TAC Guide for Mechanically Stabilized Earth Walls Approved

Monday, March 6, 2017

A national guide for the design, construction, maintenance and inspection of mechanically stabilized earth (MSE) walls has been approved by the Transportation Association of Canada’s (TAC) Chief Engineers’ Council.

A notice will be posted on TAC’s website once the publication is available for sale in the Bookstore.

Recommended by the Structures and Soils & Materials Standing Committees, the Guide will address a growing interest among MSE owners regarding ultimate responsibility for structural and geotechnical design, materials, construction inspection, asset management and repairs.  

It will provide guidance to MSE owners, engineers, suppliers and contractors on the selection, design, construction, and inspection with a focus on public works projects.

The Guide is organized into the following sections:

  • Overview – brief history, theory, types and components of MSE walls
  • Roles and Responsibilities – stakeholder responsibilities and suggested organizational structure for MSE project delivery
  • Applications – typical applications, performance,  durability and selection of soil reinforcements, drainage, and more
  • Design – basic MSE theory, with design concepts reviewed to frame context for other sections of the guide
  • Construction – summer and winter construction, reinforced soil placement and compaction, temporary drainage
  • Quality Assessment/Quality Control – construction quality assurance and quality control, materials quality control, and inspection and maintenance
  • Lessons Learned  – galvanizing testing on bends to mitigate embrittlement, examples of integrating barriers into MSE walls, design considerations, and more

Golder Associates Ltd. conducted the research work for this project.

Funding partners include Alberta Transportation; British Columbia Transportation and Infrastructure; Manitoba Infrastructure; New Brunswick Transportation and Infrastructure; Newfoundland and Labrador Transportation and Works; Ministry of Transportation, Ontario; Prince Edward Island Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy; Ministère des Transports, de la Mobilité durable et de l’Électrification des transports du Québec; Saskatchewan Highways and Infrastructure; Atlantic Industries Limited; NILEX; Reinforced Earth Company Ltd.; Tensar International Corps.; and the cities of Calgary, Edmonton, and Winnipeg.

If you have any questions or require additional information, email Craig Stackpole.