U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Texas > San Antonio
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 01-27-2010, 04:29 AM
 
2,721 posts, read 3,407,585 times
Reputation: 1536

Advertisements

It is far cheaper. It is preventable underneath the house. If the soils
were mixed together , clay and silt or sand mixture it will continue with uneven expansion rates. Clay is impermeable to water mostly but the silt-sand pockets and veins will alllow moisture to penetrate and raise the moisture levels of the underlying clay. Contaminated soil.
Clay- expands far more than sand, sand being porous, heavy rainfalls
into sandy soils leach straight through causing minimum expansion. S.A. has clayish soils which is one of the reasons why so many streets are bad
around town .
Quote:
Originally Posted by RGJ View Post
Soils engineers test soil permeability by taking a sample to a lab
soaking the sample with water weighing and measuring the sample before and after baking it. This is how maximum figures of soil density are reached.
Old fashined stuff, not nowadays -these days it is done in a modern high tech method- BY percentage of moisture in a sample required. Different soils are site specific. Excavation contractors are required to add water to soils, mix them together and then compact them to reach maximum densities. Usually around 7% to reach max. density. The water removes air pockets called voids during compaction. Sometimes without water addition during the compaction phase of this procedure a city lot can settle over a long period of time. Topsoil cannot be used for a stressed
foundation material as decompsoition will cause settling.
This compaction testing is a required practice in street construction on subsoils and the crushed limestone gravel where traffic flow will add weight stress to the grades causing failure without subgrade prep. In more moist climates water does not need to be added, ground moisture is sufficient. In these climates water collection systems of perforated pvc pipes are commonly installed around houses duing constr.to keep moisture away from house foundations where rain is more plentiful and ground water tables can be very high.
There are , of course ,variables at each location -each site being different
this is just a general explanation. Soaker hoses around homes can help immeasurably here in s.a. where soil expansion and contrction is such a problem
A slowly leaking water main under a city street can can cause the same thing.
Resident: Pulte Homes offers help (http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/Resident_says_Pulte_Homes_offers_to_repair_slope-failure_homes.html - broken link)

How do you explain the fact that according to this article, Pultex is going to try and repair the most affected houses? I realize they are probably listening to their corporate attorneys and if they did offer the most affected homeowner a buyout, they may be opening the floodgates. But the fact remains that these houses will never, ever be the same. I think Pulte is making a huge mistake by not being more.....ya know....more.
Quick reply to this message

 
Old 01-27-2010, 07:32 AM
 
410 posts, read 806,239 times
Reputation: 324
I was surpised with initial reports that permits weren't in place. I live on the northeast side. I was assisting a friend w a garage sale early one Saturday morning, when out of nowhere, a city worker (?) swooped in and asked for our yard sale permit/tag. This has happened at least 2x that I can recall. In my experience, if they have folks out there driving around and randomly checking simple yard sale permits, how in the world does San Antonio not have an adequate system in place with right personnel checking these highly visible, obviously complicated construction projects for the right paperwork in place? I know I'm probably oversimplifying issue, but this is just an observation....My heart goes out to folks in affected subdivision.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-27-2010, 08:02 AM
 
Location: SA/Pipe Creek
2,790 posts, read 5,167,737 times
Reputation: 1590
Quote:
Originally Posted by kittykat13 View Post
While reading the comments below the article this website was mentioned: The Hills of Rivermist Collapse

A before and after shot of the land prior to the subdivision development. What a significant difference.
This is exactly what I was griping about in a previous post. They strip the dadblasted land of the natural soil retainers and anchors - trees and limestone. Then you have a barenaked ugly hill. Then you build box-like homes on top of it with no architectural significance. I'm surprised they didn't put a strip mall and a Chili's up there, too!

1. Mess with the natural features on the edge of the hill country. FAIL

2. Build a wall that is clearly not thick or strong enough to retain the stripped earth. FAIL

3. Thanks, Centex/Pulte/Pultex(whatever you are) for the uglification of our area! Way to go! LOL
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-27-2010, 08:09 AM
 
Location: Say-Town! Texas
968 posts, read 2,184,261 times
Reputation: 566
its all too convenient for the city worker to ask a person for their yard sale permit, they're right there in front of you.

But in a subdivision, usually the permit holders are no where to be found, or in the office which is located elsewhere.

God forbid the city worker have to inconvenience himself and look for them....i hate to be cynical, but permits have become more about the money than the "safety involved"

and if they aren't checking important things like permits for retaining walls...then its becoming more about convenience than safety

its beyond me to understand why we need a permit to have a yard sale....
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-27-2010, 08:20 AM
 
Location: SouthCentral Texas
3,855 posts, read 4,202,489 times
Reputation: 958
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dopo View Post
I was listening to talk radio this morning and I got pissed off.

Here's the way I see it (from what I understand):
- Engineering company designs the retaining wall
- Engineers approves and seals the drawings, making himself responsible for the design.
- Contractor/builder builds the structure based 100% on the engineer's design.

This morning on talk radio, the whole time they were saying:
"Why did the city allow them to build it if it doesn't meet city code?"
Constantly blaming the city, and not saying 1 word about the engineering company or the builder.
It's also funny that this is the same guy that everysingle day says: "Take all regulations off of business and let the market decide"

It bothered me, because it seemed to me like the people on radio were making a huge effort to take the blame from the people that build that POS and pass the blame to the city.
If the city is responsible for any mistake made by engineering companies or their contractors.... what's the point of hiring them?

From my point of view, it's like blaming the city for allowing people to drive without insurance.
I think because the City has the trained inspectors to see problems in the design. and the City is the last to sign off on a design.

If a house burns down because of faulty wirirng, yes the electritian is a fault, but one has to ask...why did the city sign-off on the work.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-27-2010, 08:20 AM
 
Location: San Antonio
1,255 posts, read 1,752,820 times
Reputation: 1362
Yard sales are a revenue source. Inspection of a retaining wall requires an expertise I expect few have; thus, the requirement of an Engineer's stamp on the plans.

I was quite heartened seeing the other brother Castro looking for clients. Is this a great country or what?
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-27-2010, 08:23 AM
Status: "just keep scrolling then?" (set 10 days ago)
 
14,613 posts, read 31,133,706 times
Reputation: 6656
Quote:
Originally Posted by Orincarnia View Post

its beyond me to understand why we need a permit to have a yard sale....
If we didn't, there would be homes having a "permanent" yard sale set up in their yards....trust me, that's what used to happen.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-27-2010, 08:28 AM
 
Location: SouthCentral Texas
3,855 posts, read 4,202,489 times
Reputation: 958
Quote:
Originally Posted by huckster View Post
The retaining wall integrity had nothing to do with it. It was uncompacted fill that was the culprit. Engineering specs. are only good if they are closely
monitored, inspected, tested and documented. Only in damp terrain are re-inforced walls needed- Shoring or cantilevered design.
Nor did the Balcones fault Line cause this, that is really assinine. A wall is not even needed unless there is a large elevation, or grade change as in a developer trying to squeeze as many homes as they can as closely as they can into a development.
A stone wall is more than adequate to hold stessed backfill as long as
the fill has been correctly compacted with a piece of heavy equipment
from a manufacturer like caterpillar- a roller or sheepsfoot compactor
weighing around 40 tons. Done in a maximum of one foot lifts
with uncontaminated materials in will hold almost anything short of skyscrapers or heavy manufacturing operations as in 50 ton stamping presses
both of which need shoring or a massive deep pillars called piers as in bridge
type piers.
All that happened here was a minor screw-up in the earth moving operations trying to do it on the cheap using uncompacted fill for
a building foundation. There are far worse engineeering disasters.
Whether or nt the house will be stable into the future, I doubt it.
Varying rates of compaction will cause different rates of soils
expansion and contraction underneath causing foundations to crack,
separate and heave at different rates.
The house will begin to lean and then collapse, I would think,
in the future.


There are 10' (and much higher) retaining walls all over SA (and all over the country). It's quite common when developing land.

As another poster in this thread posted, there are very specific/technical criteria prescribed when these improvements are designed and built. And, yes, they're inspected during and after.

Moderator cut: see comment
[/quote]


That might be, but what caused the soil in the alley to buckel and heave forward and knock down the retaining wall of the home on the bottom of the hill?

Weight is weight, if compacted or loose. the weight of the soil on the hill blew out the soil in the alley...below the retaining wall.

look at the soil in the alley between the large wall and the wall at the backyard of the home at the bottom of the hill.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-27-2010, 09:07 AM
 
Location: Say-Town! Texas
968 posts, read 2,184,261 times
Reputation: 566
well, i believe in less government regulation. i don't believe in signing a "no sue" arbitration agreement. i've seen that once in my life on a loan, and i got burned on that loan bad.

i believe in the government (run by the people) backing the people when something like this happens. those 750 people in rivermist paid for a structurally sound house, on a structurally sound lot. the city puts in place requirements, which include engineer inspections on EVERYTHING. its pulte/centex's job to survey and build a good home, its what they were paid for. (if we had honest people in a real free market, government regulation would not be required as the business owner would make sure his product was sound before he sold it)

there is no free lunch in this world. those unstructurally sound lots are the result of an oversight on centex's part, yes there are tons of arguments to oppose my point of view, technicalities to say "its not their fault entirely" but on the flip side "where is the rebar? where is the concrete? wheres the soil tests? wheres the reciept for the gound compactors?" these things should be laid out for the home owners to have access too at this point.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-27-2010, 10:09 AM
 
197 posts, read 540,898 times
Reputation: 92
To bad a lot of these documents could be fabricated to avoid litigation, albeit the city permit of course....



Quote:
Originally Posted by Orincarnia View Post
well, i believe in less government regulation. i don't believe in signing a "no sue" arbitration agreement. i've seen that once in my life on a loan, and i got burned on that loan bad.

i believe in the government (run by the people) backing the people when something like this happens. those 750 people in rivermist paid for a structurally sound house, on a structurally sound lot. the city puts in place requirements, which include engineer inspections on EVERYTHING. its pulte/centex's job to survey and build a good home, its what they were paid for. (if we had honest people in a real free market, government regulation would not be required as the business owner would make sure his product was sound before he sold it)

there is no free lunch in this world. those unstructurally sound lots are the result of an oversight on centex's part, yes there are tons of arguments to oppose my point of view, technicalities to say "its not their fault entirely" but on the flip side "where is the rebar? where is the concrete? wheres the soil tests? wheres the reciept for the gound compactors?" these things should be laid out for the home owners to have access too at this point.
Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Texas > San Antonio
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. | Please obey Forum Rules | Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top