Building Foundations in Southern California | San Bernardino Construction Management

Southern California is a beautiful and geographically diverse region. It is also a land of earthquakes, expanding soils, and places of intense erosion. Residential and commercial buildings here require especially detailed attention to the construction of the building’s foundation in order for the structure to withstand potential adverse conditions like these in the future. Murphy Construction is a company with knowledge and experience in construction foundations under local conditions.

Southern California Foundation Construction

The potential for earthquakes means that homes and businesses are vulnerable to lateral forces knocking down walls, and then roofs, during a quake. Engineering for protection against earthquake damage starts with building a solid, concrete foundation designed for local soil types. Then, the building is securely attached to the foundation with bolts or rebar. Finally, walls are constructed with adequate lateral bracing using plywood shear-panels, reinforced masonry, or steel frame construction.

Expanding soils are another geographic feature in many areas of Southern California. These types of soils often occur where fine, clay soil has accumulated in an ancient lake bed or flood plain. As the name implies, expanding soils heave and toss as they gain and lose moisture from season to season, and buildings with inadequate foundations heave and toss with them. When building foundations are inadequately designed or constructed, these soils cause cracks in foundations, driveways and walkways, and interior walls.

The solution to building on expanding soils is in designing a foundation adequate for holding the building in place while the soils shrink and swell. This sometimes involves drilling holes into the ground and filling them with concrete and rebar, creating an underground pier system which stabilizes the building on solid bedrock below the expanding soils. In other situations, larger concrete beams can be engineered to withstand the forces.

Potential Problems Addressed by Proper Foundation Construction

Erosion is also a problem in many parts of the region, especially in coastal areas, arroyos and old stream beds, and desert locations. The potential for erosion also often requires an engineered foundation solution and a construction company with the local experience and expertise to get the job done right.

Whether you are building new or repairing an existing structure, Murphy Construction has the experience, equipment, and engineering experts to construct a foundation built for California conditions.