dcsimg Ground engineering - Ramboll UK Limited

Ground engineering

Ramboll provides an unusually comprehensive geotechnical service, recognising that overcoming ground-based site constraints is often the key to project success in the built environment. We bring depth of experience and ingenuity to the challenges posed by inner-city, urban and brownfield contexts, whatever the scale.


Urban geotechnics

Our engineers have a particular depth of experience in ground work on confined urban sites, sites in inner cities and in brownfield contexts. We can meet the challenges of optimising land area, working with close adjacent structures and handling deep groundworks, often with restricted access.

We also have a long track record of successful projects located on ground with complex sub-surface conditions, including the presence of other structures, sensitive archaeology and nearby major waterways, as well as urban and transport infrastructure — existing and planned. Many sites combine a number of these elements, such as the central London site for the BBC W1 project.

Our approach enables the most cost effective solution for a site and recognises potential value. Our expertise in soil/structure interaction has enabled us to design raft foundations for buildings on the most challenfing sites, previously earmarked for new piles, providing significant cost and program saving. Redevelopment of urban sites often means working with existing foundations and foundation re-use, avoidance, or removal are options we consider as a matter of course.

Building geotechnics

We provide geotechnical engineering for buildings and structures of all scales, notably for complex, high rise and large scale projects, in all types of locations — in the UK or overseas, inner-city confined sites or greenfield.

We can provide value at every stage of a project’s lifecycle. Early on we find that our approach opens the door to innovative solutions; later, identifying smaller improvements to schemes or simplifying buildability may be key. In urban locations, we have successfully found solutions for projects that involve not only extensive foundation re-use but also complex piling grids and building close to tunnels.

Consideration of seismic factors is also increasingly part of our international work. We have undertaken geoseismic design for projects that range from developments on mountain slopes to high-rise urban buildings with deep basements and liquefiable ground conditions in areas of moderate to severe seismicity.

Our approach

Our geotechnical team is a highly-qualified, enthusiastic group of experts. In keeping with Ramboll's established approach, our engineers are flexible in the way they work, innovative in their thinking and alert to the possibilities of non-standard solutions — which frequently are more effective in meeting client and design team priorities. Our expertise extends to specialist areas that influence the whole life of a project — from concept design to post-construction monitoring — and involve close liaison with other engineering disciplines: an approach that maximises project value while managing risk.

We provide a full range of geotechnical procedures, including desk study, ground-based risk assessment, ground contamination testing, due diligence consultancy, site investigation, earth retaining structures and foundation design.

We are at the forefront of our field in a number of areas, including: soil/structure interaction analyses and ground movement predictions; instrumentation and monitoring during construction and following project completion; the development of risk mitigation strategies; and computer simulation and 3D finite element analysis.

In addition, we continue to be instrumental in geotechnical research initiatives, often in collaboration with academic institutions. These links ensure that we are involved in the constant evolution of ground theory, and we readily incorporate new findings into our practice.



ICE - Reducing The Risk of leaking Substructures
ICE - Reducing the Risk of Leaking Substructure
A Clients' Guide
by Michelle Maloney, Hilary Skinner, Mohsen Vaziri and Jan Windle
Sponsored and published by the ICE, Sept 2009.
Download the pdf


Mohsen Vaziri. Ramboll
Head of Ground Engineering, London
T+44 20 7631 5291