Retaining Walls Selection

The history of retaining walls stretches far into antiquity, with examples dating back thousands of years. One such ancient marvel is Newgrange Cairn, a community in modern-day Ireland that thrived over 5,000 years ago. The retaining walls of Newgrange Cairn utilized a unique construction method: between stacks of rounded stones, layers of grass turf or mats were strategically placed. This innovative approach helped alleviate pressure on the walls, making it one of the earliest known instances of retaining walls.


Similar construction techniques were also employed in Mesopotamian “ziggurats,” imposing pyramid-like structures made of clay. Additionally, the ancient Egyptians utilized retaining walls to manage the mighty Nile River, employing them not only to mitigate flooding but also to redirect water for irrigation purposes.


Throughout history, various civilizations around the world implemented different versions of retaining walls to address their specific needs. As human civilization developed, so too did the need for manipulating the natural environment, often necessitating the construction of retaining walls.

In the 20th century, the retention wall industry underwent significant transformations. While ancient retaining walls typically utilized local materials like stone or imported wood, the advent of reinforced concrete revolutionized the field. The widespread adoption of reinforced concrete allowed for the precasting of elements and more precise engineering, with events such as World War I accelerating innovation in retaining wall construction worldwide.


Moving into the 21st century, advancements in retaining wall techniques and methods continued to evolve. Traditional gravity walls, often constructed from large masses of stone or concrete, gave way to composite gravity walls, which combine multiple materials to resist driving forces more effectively.

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