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The building process

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The building process: residential house

Pre-construction processes and requirements
• Design of the house
• Legal requirements and documentation
• Site Preparation

Construction of the house structures
• Foundation and Floor Construction
• Wall Construction
• Roof Construction

The building process: residential house Installation of services • Water. phone and internet Fixtures the finishes • Roofing Materials • Window Frames and Windows. Doors • Screens • Exterior Wall Finishes • Interior Wall & Ceiling Claddings 4 . drainage & gas • Electrical.

Pre-construction processes and requirements Design of the house • The initial consultation • Site Analysis • Initial Design • Developed Design 5 .

BASIX Certificate • Drainage Plan (Storm water/flood study) • Heritage Report (if required) 6 . Pre-construction processes and requirements Development application to council • Site plan. Elevations and Sections • Shadow Diagrams • Landscape Plan • Geotechnical Engineers Report (if required) • Foundation Details and Structural Details • Demolition Plan • Environmental Effects Statement. Floor Plan.

Pre-construction processes and requirements Site Preparation • Demolition of existing structures • Site cleaning • Establishment of Services • Security • Sediment control and site drainage • Waste management • Set out of dwelling 7 .

Construction of the house structures • Foundations and floor construction • Wall construction • Roof construction .

and seismic loads – Should have an adequate load capacity with limited settlement – The primary design concerns are settlement and bearing capacity. stable surface to safely support a building – Transfers building loads to the ground – Anchor the building from wind. Provide a level. 9 . flood. Construction of the house structures • Foundation – Lowest part of the structure.

Foundation failure 10 .

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Foundation • Foundations Must Resist – Dead Load • Weight of building – Live Load • Weight of occupants. furniture. and equipment – Lateral Loads • Wind • Seismic activity SOIL REACTIONS • Flood 12 .

and as they dry out. they swell or increase in volume. • The more reactive the clay or the deeper the soil is affected. Foundation: soil movement • The most common movements arise as a result of moisture changes in reactive clay soils. they shrink. • As clay soils become wet. the larger will be the surface movement 13 .

Any moisture rising beneath the slab can no longer evaporate from the surface. moisture will be able to evaporate during dry periods and permeate back under the slab during wet periods. 14 . Foundation: soil movement • Constructing a slab on the ground is like covering the ground with an impermeable membrane. • Around the edges of the slab. • The soil in the centre of the slab will therefore remain damp.

• It is important to determine how reactive a site is. and to what depth the soil will be affected. Foundation: soil movement • Thus the edges of the slab will be subject to periods of heave and periods of loss of support when the slab has to cantilever out from the centre mound. 15 . • The amount of movement to be designed for can then be determined. and thus a footing provided that will adequately support the building superstructure and limit the movement that the superstructure has to accommodate.

Residential building foundation Design Relevant design code • Building Code of Australia (BCA) • AS 1170: Structural design actions • AS 3600: Concrete Structures • AS2870: Residential slabs and footings 16 .

and at an acceptable cost 17 . detailed and constructed in accordance with AS 2870 are not intended to prevent cracking of the walls constructed on them due to possible foundation movement.Residential building foundation Design AS2870: Residential slabs and footings • “Deemed-to-satisfy” Footing systems designed. but merely to limit cracks to a generally acceptable width and number.

including calculations. AS2870. specification and drawings or procedure Step 1 Classification of the Site Step 2 Assessment of the Topography Step 3 Selection of Footing and Wall Types Step 4 Assembly of the Details Step 5 Preparation of the Documentation. etc 18 .

Site classification • Based on the expected ground surface movement and the depth to which this movement extends • Classification of sites where ground movement is predominantly due to soil reactivity under normal moisture conditions shall be classified based on the expected level of ground movement as nominated in Table 2.1. 19 .

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channels. ponds. dams. or tanks – Trees and Gardens – Cut-and-fill – Paving – Aggressive soils 21 . Site classification • Other factors to consider – Building over the site of a recently-removed structure – Drains.

Assessment of the topography • Orientation of the site • Direction of any slope • Maximum depth of cut • Flood-prone sites • Maximum depth of fill • Extent of fill • Retaining walls • Drainage .

Selection of footing and wall types Blob or Pad footing Strip footing Footing slab Stiffened raft slab Waffle raft slab .

such as brick piers LOAD (sleeper/Island/isolated). concrete or PIER (Concrete or steel columns. SPREAD FOOTING • may be square or round (Concrete) 24 . to prevent Masonry) them from punching through the foundation material. timber posts. Footing: Blob or Pad footing • designed to support point COLUMN loads .

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e. i. no reinforcement. 26 . • The depth below ground level to the base of the footing should be not less than 300mm or to rock. whichever occurs first. which allows for a minimum of 100mm of ground cover to the pad. Footing: Blob or Pad footing • The thickness of the footings should be not less than 200mm and is usually mass concrete only.

such as clay. which in turn causes wall lining cracks at the heads of doors 27 . Footing: Blob or Pad footing • The excavation around the footings should be backfilled by manually rodding or tamping soil to its original level. to prevent surface water ponding around them which may lead to erosion. as the water will allow the soil to swell which may lead to floor and wall movement. • This is especially important for reactive soils.

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Footing: Strip footing • A wide strip of reinforced concrete that supports loads from a bearing wall • are designed to run in a continuous reinforced concrete strip around the perimeter of the structure to support the external walls • Not suitable for “H” and “E” STRIP FOUNDATION FOOTING class sites (Concrete) WALL (Concrete or Masonry) 29 .

Footing: Strip footing 30 .

Footing: Strip footing • The width. depth and size of the lap for steps is determined by a Structural Engineer and a guide to these sizes is laid out in AS 2870 31 .

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They are constructed on the ground. Various types of slabs are available. – Footing slab – Stiffened raft slab – Waffle raft slab 34 . Concrete slabs on ground • Concrete slabs are floor systems of concrete and steel reinforcing.

35 . Footing slab • Consists of a concrete floor supported on the ground with a separately poured strip footing. • Adapts well to sloping sites. • It minimises the time excavations are left open and does not require extensive formwork. • It is particularly suited to A and S sites. although two concrete pours are required. • Depending on the site classification and the requirements for termite protection the edge beam may be tied to the slab by fitments.

Footing slab 36 .

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Footing slab


Footing slab


Stiffened raft slab
• Consists of a concrete slab on
ground stiffened by integral
edge beams and a grid of
internal beams.
• The floor slab is placed at the
same time as the external and
internal beams all of which are
• Internal beams are not required
on stable sites
• generally require only one
concrete pour, are economical in
material and labour use.

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Stiffened raft slab 46 .

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Stiffened raft slab 48 .

but this may be offset by the reduction in retaining wall costs. Stiffened raft slab with deep edge beam • the stiffened raft incorporates deep edge beams. • It allows for the floor to remain elevated. • Suitable for Class M sloping sites where cut-and-fill excavation is not desired. It is an expensive method which adds cost to the basic slab design. 49 . which may prevent the necessity for high retaining walls created by lowering the slab.

Stiffened raft slab with deep edge beam 50 .

51 . • It is constructed on a level site using cardboard or polystyrene void formers to produce a close grid of reinforced concrete ribs. which support the slab panels. Waffle raft slab • It is a stiffened raft with closely spaced ribs constructed on the ground and with slab panels suspended between the ribs.

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57 . Waffle raft slab • they are used on flat sites and are wholly above ground • no beam excavation is required • no controlled or rolled fill is used • cardboard slab panel/void formers are used • slab panels are on 1 metre grids (approximately) • trench mesh or individual bars can be used • slab thickness is 85 mm and internal beams are 110 mm wide • there is minimal concrete volume • shrinkage of slab is lower than stiffened rafts and footing slabs • they use 30% less concrete than a stiffened raft • they use 20% less steel than a stiffened raft.

Waffle raft slab 58 .

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Selection of footing and wall types .

Footing design Single storey residential house Site category: M class Wall type: Masonry Veneer 61 .