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Civil Engineering/Horizontal Pressure from Neighbour footing on Retaining Wall



We are planning a basement for one building. there is a existing building in neighbour.

How do I calculate the Horizontal Pressure which will come due to these neighbour foundations on my proposed retaining wall ?

Am Attaching a pic showing the arrangement.

ANSWER: Dear Seyed

You should consider the retaining wall with loaded soil behind it. The general formula is Fh = Ka ( soil weight + Neighbor loading ) . But keep in mind that the distribution pattern of horizontal force due to soil weight is rectangular but the loading one is uniform and rectangular. Take a look at Bowles handbook. Don't hesitate to ask me if you have doubt.

Ka is the active coefficient of earth pressure.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I do not have the column load of the neigh. foundation.

However i know the SBC is 150 kN/M2

Should i consider this as surcharge load ?? So if Ka is 0.3

The UDL on the retaining wall would be 0.3X150 =45 kn/M ?? Am i correct??

please help

Dear Seyed

You should investigate the neighbor building and have a clear view of the actual situation. I don't have any idea about the loading , you can get it with in situ investigation. Assume that you found that a pressure of 20 KN/m2 ( be careful about the units) is present under neighbor foundation then you can accept that this loading have a semi infinite nature in area of action.

Then you can accept that the lateral pressure due to this item is about 0.3 x 20 = 6 KN/m2. I guess this quantity I found out is not very bad to follow, but you must to have your own idea about the actual situation.


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Babak Esmailzadeh Hakimi


I can answer questions in Structural Engineering, Earthquake Engineering, Project Management and Project Control topics!


I am experienced in the area of earthquake engineering in electrical power industry, i.e. Lifeline Earthquake Engineering. My focus has been on structural seismic design of power installations. Recently I have got involved in project management in the category of constructional engineering.

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Bs degree in Civil Engineering from Ferdowsi University ,1988, Mashhad Iran, Ms degree in Earthquake Engineering, Sharif University of Technology, 1993, Tehran, Iran

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