Laying A Solid Foundation
Brown Residence, Week 5
The Brown’s home renovation and addition project is a massive one. We’re proposing to enlarge the main floor plan by an additional 1,000 square feet – by substantially increasing the existing kitchen, adding on a new bedroom, garage/laundry/mudroom, raising the roof and ceiling – not to mention building an entirely new second floor of an additional 1.000 square feet as well.
In order for us to ensure that these augmentations to the home are built on a solid foundation we have to first be aware of the land conditions – and more importantly understand the conditions of the soil we’re currently dealing with. Without this information, we run the risk of a sub standard foundation with a potential disaster just waiting to happen. These foundations must be able to support the weight of the new and improved structure – and the soil below must be able to manage that load.
Because this home is nestled on a canyon floor surrounded by hillside, the city building and safety department requires a geological/soils report, which will thoroughly analyze and document the property’s current soil conditions. This is invaluable information when adding on to an existing structure, particularly with these existing site conditions.
We also need to determine whether the Brown’s property is situated on an earthquake fault zone, prone to flooding or in any way is likely to suffer from any slope stability issues.
- Time to call in a reputable Geologist and request a bid for conducting a geological assessment of the property – which will provide us with valuable information on the soil conditions.
- After a detailed phone conversation and doing some preliminary zoning research of the property, the Geologist determined that Liz and Mark’s property was situated on liquefaction soil. That required a “Geological Engineering Liquefaction and Foundation Investigation Report.”
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Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca.
© 2009 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc