Giving Life to Failed Un-Reinforced Masonry Foundations by Controlling Surface Drainage and Sub-Surface Moisture

Ashwin Beosumbar


The rehabilitation of old buildings and failed foundation systems usually results in significant structural strengthening.

In old and delicate foundation systems, usually comprising un-reinforced stone masonry units founded directly on the sub-soils, “structural strengthening” in fact, can result in post remedial “structural weakening” and endless problems for all concerned, including the occupiers.

This paper is Part 1 of a 3 part series that presents the investigation, design and evaluation of certain heritage sites in which certain aspects of the in-situ collapsible soils was examined and a viable way of prolong foundation and general structural life was found by effectively controlling surface drainage and sub-surface moisture.

Parts 2 and 3 will cover the construction and performance aspects and will be presented in 2009 and 2010.

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