Why is Sitework Important and can my Builder handle critical issues that may be encountered?
Warner Bros. Construction specializes in all aspects of sitework. Properly laying out and constructing your site is critical in maximizing your properties use and avoiding major catastrophes in the future. Besides coordinating and scheduling advantages, WBC’s experience in site construction ensures you that you can enjoy your property for years to come. Each site is unique in what is encountered and what needs to be done. Many unforeseen site conditions are not known about until after construction begins. Some of these can be catastrophic and/or costly if not resolved correctly. Many issues can be avoided by properly planning out your site with an experienced site contractor.
- Site Layout, planning and coordination with surveyors, engineers and home designers is crucial. See Site Selection/Plans/Permits
- Excavation: Establishing footing elevations is critical to ensure frost protection, proper drainage, ease of access and basement walk-out.
- Backfill: Backfilling with suitable material is critical in protecting your foundation from damage and for proper drainage.
- Underground Utilities: Coordination of u/g electric, phone, cable, water line, septic system and u/g propane tanks is crucial to avoid unwanted issues in the future and for a single mechanical room in your basement. Not coordinated properly and you will waste living area when you finish off your basement area.
- Grading: Proper grading and sometimes swales are needed to be constructed to keep grades sloping away from your house, septic and property lines.
- Drainage: Perimeter drains installed properly and ran to daylight to keep storm water from entering your basement.
- Septic Systems: Conventional, Eljen Systems, Pump Stations, mound systems all are possibilities based on site conditions.
- Driveways: Install crowned driveways with NYS Dot Item #4 topping.
- Top Soil & Seed: Used to stabilize your property and for establishing a lawn if desired.
- Retaining Walls: Used to establish usable grades around the house and property and for establishing frost protection.
- Drainage: Mulch and stone to prevent erosion and for planting beds.
- Plantings: Used for erosion control, privacy and for aesthetics.
- Patios & Walkways: Stamped concrete, pavers, blue stone are used for recreational patios/walks and for erosion control.
- Fire pits: Can be a nice touch to your front yard.
Possible Encounters during Construction
During construction, there are numerous unforeseen site conditions that may be uncovered. Resolving these properly are essential to a good site, protecting the house and knowing your options to help avoid cost over runs. Below are some examples that can be uncovered:
- Unsuitable soil: If unsuitable soils are used for backfilling the house, the results could be significant including foundation damage and water in the basement level.
- High water table: High water tables are not always evident by seeing water in excavation holes. Knowing the types of soil is important to help avoid septic failures and water in the basement. Depending on the volume and elevations, there are many different options for your septic and for waterproofing (Not Damp proofing) your house including; Under slab French Drains, hydro tube bars, water stops, foundation waterproofing, back filling with crushed stone, etc. Submersible pumps should be a last resort.
- Ledge: If ledge is encountered, all options should be looked at to help keep costs down without sacrificing proper construction. i.e.: move the house or septic if feasible, hammer ledge out or blast.
- Erosion/Sediment Controls: To avoid erosion and to protect against storm water run off and for sediment controls, some lots may require significant temporary and permanent structures including silt fencing, top soil & seed, drip strips, grass or stone lined ditches along driveways, external french drains and in some cases drywells. In some cases, your project may require a DEC storm water permit prepared by a civil engineer. Be sure your contractor has received NYS DEC endorsed training to satisfy requirements under the Construction Activity SPDES General Permit.