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Retaining Wall Section of Concrete Masonry Manual Updated

Wednesday, 23 October 2019  
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Concrete masonry is a staple material of the construction industry, offering structural and architectural advantages in a single material and is recognised as a major contributor to a sustainable built environment.

Image. Able Mason

The New Zealand Concrete Masonry Manual, which was created in the late 1970s as a guide to the design and construction of concrete masonry, has been undergoing review over the past several years.

An update of Section 6.1 Masonry Retaining Walls is now available for free download from the Concrete NZ website.

The retaining wall section, updated from the 2012 edition, provides standard details for reinforced concrete masonry retaining walls. 2019 changes include:

  • Design are now aligned to the provisions of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s (MBIE) publication Earthquake Geotechnical Engineering Practice, Module 6: Earthquake Resistant Retaining Wall Design.
  • Walls are stand-alone, and not part of, or supporting, any building structure.
  • Designs cover the three most-populated of the four earthquake zones defined in NZS 3604 Timber Framed-Building - with the Zone diagram in Figure 2 has been update.
  • Typical soil parameters have been updated and are more generalised.
  • The applied surcharge case has increased load values to provide greater applicability across boundaries.
  • Wall and foundation detailing has been revised to reflect the above.

Updating the retaining wall section ensures the Manual remains relevant and reflects current building code requirements.

All sections of the New Zealand Concrete Masonry Manual can be downloaded from the Concrete NZ website.