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North Vancouver
Canada

604-317-1180

Vancouver retaining walls and excavation services -  Dig Yardscapes offers services in retaining wall construction and excavating for homeowners in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland including North Vancouver, West Vancouver  & Burnaby. 

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Retaining Walls

Retaining walls are what we do. We offer a complete line of options ranging from natural stone to engineered concrete to timber and we now do green walls too. Don't know what you need? We've got the know-how to suggest the best retaining wall product for your particular installation.

This is a science

Retaining walls should not be taken lightly; the security of your property and that of your neighbours is at stake when you install a land retention solution. There are many items to consider when installing a retaining wall, the most important being drainage. Hydrostatic pressure accumulating behind your wall is a major cause of wall failure.   

In most cases

A retaining wall is required to elevate and plateau your property, while giving it shape and creating more usable space. Currently, Dig has been replacing a lot of rotten or degrading walls. Updating your old walls with new technology and good drainage will greatly extend stability and add value to your property.

Solutions

Dig Yardscapes is focused on offering our clients solutions above all else. Using a wide variety of products, and sticking to the engineered installation practices, means that you will receive the right retaining wall for your needs with long lasting durability.  Land retention is an expensive undertaking. We want to ensure that you get the most for your money.


Retaining wall options

Rock

Natural rock retaining wall in West Vancouver, BC

Natural rock retaining wall in West Vancouver, BC

Rock retaining walls

Blasted rock retaining walls are the most natural land retention solution that we offer. Blasted rock differs from boulder retaining walls in that the rock is quarried, giving it pronounced edges that lend stability and safety. Keep in mind that in some parts of Vancouver and the Lower Mainland, blasted rock is the only legal natural rock solution permitted as district engineers have concluded that the rock is less likely to roll down into neighbouring properties.

On top of these great features, dry stacked rock retaining walls inhibit passive drainage through the cracks of the wall rock, which alleviates pressure from behind the retaining wall. Last but not least, natural stone and its installation method often leads to a very competitive price point.

Pros & Cons

Perfect for job-sites with excellent access and owners looking for that natural, West Coast look.

+ Durability
+ Sustainability
+ Natural look
+ Low price point
+ Compatible with MSE

_ Requires large scale excavation
_ Requires large dumping area
_ Requires great access for equipment and materials
_ Best used for straight lines with square corners


Concrete

United Lock Block Installation in Coquitlam, BC.

United Lock Block Installation in Coquitlam, BC.

Large concrete block walls

These concrete wall blocks are excellent for large scale retaining wall installations. We prefer using them because they are stable, bullet proof products, manufactured locally. The blocks are made with up to 84% recycled materials and come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and textures that help to create a unique, visually appealing installation.

Pros and Cons

Great for properties with excellent access and owners who are looking for very long term and stable installations.

+ Durability
+ Sustainability (84% recycled content)
+ Compatible with MSE
+ Variety of textures & finishes
+ Quick assembly

_ Requires large scale excavation
_ Requires crane or large equipment access
_ Industrial look


Allan Block wall installation in West Vancouver, BC.

Allan Block wall installation in West Vancouver, BC.

Small Concrete Blocks

Although small modular blocks come in a wide variety of block shapes and textures, the most common varieties that you will see are the "Juniors" and "Jumbos". Production companies like Allan Block, Pisa Stone, and Keystone, are produced locally and are a popular product for smaller land retention solutions. However, make no mistake that these highly engineered blocks are capable of serious retention when they are augmented with geogrid stabilizers.

Another huge bonus to modular block products is their ability to create compact curves for a more organic shaped landscape.

Pros & Cons

A great long lasting choice usable in nearly all landscape scenarios.

+ Long lasting
+ Variety in face textures and colours
+ Great for curved walls
+ Limited access job sites
+ Compatible with MSE
+ Versatility - usable as steps, planters etc...
+ Competitive pricing

_ The smallest ground movement from tree roots or erosion will cause this product to look misaligned
_ Limited height in gravity wall application
 


Poured concrete retaining wall in Lions Bay, BC.

Poured concrete retaining wall in Lions Bay, BC.

Poured reinforced concrete walls

Poured and reinforced concrete covers a wide variety of applications from a simple street curb to a hydro-electric dam. It's a perfect long lasting engineered structure for land retention and so is often used as a foundation for residential homes.

This is a premium product for retaining walls when one considers the options, primarily for the experienced labour, and specialized tools that are required to build, transport and finish this product correctly.

It is the strongest retaining wall option available.

Pros and Cons

+ Can be poured almost anywhere on any site
+ Strong and proven reliability
+ Curved surfaces are available
+ Modern look

_ World leader in co2 emissions
_ Expensive
_ Complicated

 

 


Rockscape retaining wall, North Vancouver, BC

Rockscape retaining wall, North Vancouver, BC

Pros and Cons
+ Looks awesome – natural bedrock aesthetic
+ Excellent wall repair solution
+ High strength
+ Long-life
+ Minimal excavation required
+ Quick installation

_ Higher end cost wise
_ Requires careful design consideration for the right fit – it may look out of place in certain landscape designs.

Rockscape retaining walls

A rockscape retaining wall is a version of a reinforced concrete wall, but hand carved to look like natural stone. Concrete is shot onto the wall surface and is reinforced with steel.

Cost wise, this solution is at the high end of retaining wall options, but it really looks amazing and much more unique than a plain concrete wall.

 


Wood

Wood retaining wall installation in Lions Bay, BC

Wood retaining wall installation in Lions Bay, BC

Timber retaining walls

Timber has and always will be a viable product for land retention. Our timber walls are always constructed with appropriate horizontal supports (aka "dead men"), double dip galvanized spiral spikes and perimeter drainage, making them worry free and long lasting. The proper installation of a pressure treated timber wall should offer up to a 30 year lifespan.

Pros & Cons

+ Low cost
+ Good for difficult footing locations
+ Minimum access sites
+ Rustic appearance

_ Does not last as long as other options


Green Walls

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Green walls are a popular new retaining wall product that uses passive synthetic bags to hold sand and soil mixtures. Once the wall is installed, water gently seeps through the bag and permits growth, rooting, and great drainage.

Green walls are a suitable product for that earthy, natural look. It is usually used in conjuction MSE/geogrid. Deltalok and Envirolok are two popular options in the Vancouver area.

Pros & Cons

+ Sustainable and eco friendly
+ Curved surfaces
+ Natural appearance
+ Engineered for long life
+ Good for building on existing roots

_ Takes a while to grow in
_ May require minimal maintenance (trimming)


MSE (Mechanically Stabilized Earth)

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Geogrid is a widely used product in slope stability, land retention and soil erosion. It is the major component of an MSE application.

Most geogrids are virgin synthetic woven mats that are built into the the bank of a sloped surface. The idea here is to stabilize the earth far beyond the capabilities of a gravity wall alone. This concept is suitable for very large vertical retaining walls, applications where excess weight will be applied on top of walls, or when increased stability is desired.

Something to consider when using MSE is that it will require more excavation and labour due to its construction process.


Start your project

Want to learn a little more about our process in getting a retaining wall project going? See more about our approach here. Want to see some on-site pictures? Have a look here. Or if you're ready to get your retaining wall project going, contact us today!