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How do retaining walls work in commercial construction projects?

Compared with simple landscaping walls, retaining walls in commercial construction are built on a much bigger scale due to the projects’ size. Because of this, you must use the correct retaining wall placement and construction methods when undertaking a commercial construction venture.

Retaining walls are usually built for their aesthetic beauty as they’re used to hold the soil around your property, preventing the erosion of the building’s foundation. The type of materials used to construct a commercial retaining wall include:

  • Poured concrete

  • Precast concrete blocks

  • Natural stone

  • Bricks

Depending on the conditions of the environment around your property or its location, retaining walls can work in various ways in construction. It’s vital that the building of the wall for a commercial project is appropriately planned. Otherwise, it can be hazardous to both the well-being of the building and the suitability of the business that plans to move in on completion.

In the blog below, we’ll list some of the critical functions of retaining walls and some ways you can accurately plan for their construction.

What are the major functions of retaining walls?

Here are some of the major functions of retaining walls in commercial construction projects:

Ground Support and Soil Retention

The soil or ground make-up around where you want to construct your building is an integral part of your project that cannot be neglected. At first glance, it might seem as though your ground levels are adequate for the work required; however, you should bear in mind the condition of the ground you are dealing with below. There are forces of nature that are continually pushing and pulling on it, weakening it with time. Water is the main culprit, as well as frost and the planet’s tectonic forces.

Retaining walls

In addition to ground support and soil retention, retaining walls are helpful in ground build around your property. If you have a levelled section of ground higher than another section, you will likely need a retaining wall to avoid land slippage or subsidence.

The type of wall you need to build depends on the amount of ground excavation conducted during the construction of the building’s foundations. You might find that you have to build a strong load-bearing wall to stop the soil from eroding towards the building or foundation.

To successfully prevent erosion with retaining walls for commercial properties, it’s vital that you conduct a significant amount of surveying beforehand and then carry out proper site preparations so that your structure will not fail after construction is complete.

Aesthetics of retaining walls

Retaining walls are excellent at giving your landscape design some vibrancy. The wall acts as a barrier, making your garden easy to manipulate in any way you want - you can get creative!

The retaining wall can be used to separate and organise the space around your property, making it more appealing to the eye. A beautifully arranged garden surrounding your property will make it more attractive to buyers and customers alike. If you’re unsure how many walls you might need, the slope of your garden space will determine this for you.


Retaining walls can also help to control the runoff of water around a building. After all, nobody wants water flowing into their property! Places such as cellars, car parks, offices or retail spaces could be at risk of water damage. It’s vital that you make an allowance for the control of rainwater flow around your building during the planning of your project.

If retaining walls are properly installed, the water can be easily managed, and you can avoid flooding. The walls work by channelling runoff water towards designated places designed to capture the rainwater. You can also use the same method if you’re planning to install other water features in the project, such as fountains or swimming pools.

Don’t cut corners when it comes to wall design!

You need to make sure that your retaining wall is designed correctly to function well in your commercial property. If you don’t, this can lead to structural failure, an accumulation of water behind the wall itself!

The type of plants you plan to grow around your retaining wall can also affect the structural integrity. For example, the roots of a tree can expand and grow into the walls and damage the inside of them, making them unstable. To avoid compromising your wall, you’re better off planting small flowers and bushes or seeking the advance of a design expert before construction commences.


If you plan to construct a retaining wall, you must undertake proper preparations and wall construction methods. Whether it's for aesthetics, ground support, or soil retention, you cannot afford such a costly mistake on a construction project.

Working with Finedale Construction

It goes without saying that thanks to our huge amount of experience in the construction industry, when you choose to work with us, we take all of this into consideration.

We are always interested in hearing about new development opportunities. If you’ve recently acquired residential land and are looking for a professional and trustworthy construction and property developer, then look no further than Finedale Construction.


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