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Academic Publications
Detert, Dr.-Ing. O. | Fantini, Pierpaolo

High geogrid-reinforced slopes as flexible solution for problematic steep terrain: Trieben-Sunk project, Austria


A large‐scale construction project was implemented between June 2006 and September 2008 to reroute the B114 mountainside link road between Trieben and Sunk in Austria. In addition to comprehensive drainage and anchorage measures, the works included the extensive use of extra‐steep, geosynthetic reinforced slope structures to build the route an stabilize critical slip‐prone slopes. This paper presents a technically expedient and practically feasible solution for the use of geosynthetic‐reinforced retaining structures on projects subject to extremely difficult geotechnical and topographical conditions. Following a description of the geotechnical situation and associated problems, the procedure for dimensioning the geogrid‐reinforced structures and practical aspects of the site operations are outlined, explained and discussed.


The featured project testifies to the high technical, economic and ecological efficiency of geosyntheticreinforced constructions. The ductile material behaviour of the geosynthetic reinforcement, which is tailored to local conditions, combined with a flexible outer skin makes this type of construction the ideal solution, even on creep‐prone slopes. Not only does GRS offer favourable mechanical properties, the resulting structures can also be designed to blend harmoniously with the landscape setting. The high flexibility of the specified geogrids allows efficient and practical transportation to the work location – a major advantage, particularly on constricted sites.

The featured project is a prime illustration of the effective combination of different stabilization methods, such as GRS, anchorages, soil nailing and drainage, in
difficult terrain. The successful implementation of construction projects of this technical complexity requires in‐depth experience and the commitment of all project team members to the pursuit of innovative solutions.