Case Study: Cooks Valley Road Kingsport, TN Retaining Wall

Like many cities across the US, Kingsport, Tennessee, is in the midst of suburban expansion and experiencing many of the challenges that growth brings. To alleviate traffic in a particularly busy outlying residential area, the municipality launched a construction project to widen Cooks Valley Road. One quarter-mile section of the road called for the construction of a retaining wall built into the yard of a homeowner just behind the sidewalk that bordered the widened street. The original specifications for the wall proposed the use of a competitive wall system. Belgard’s MegaTandem™ MSRW™ System was suggested as an alternative segmental retaining wall system to save cost without reducing quality.

Mega-Tandem™ MSRW™ System’s advantages over the originally specified competitive material were numerous. Due to the fact that hard rock lay just below the surface of the wall, the city of Kingsport had two choices. The first option would be to exercise eminent domain, seize property from the owners and blast away the rock to provide enough room to install the geo grid, which would provide strength to the wall. The second option would be to find a product that could eliminate the geo grid, but still provide the necessary wall strength. Mega-Tandem™ MSRW™ System fit the second, preferred alternative.

Additional cost savings were highlighted from ease of installation. The previously specified material came in the form of 2,800 lb. concrete blocks that required the daily use of a track hoe throughout the installation process. MegaTandem™ MSRW™ System can be installed by a team of only three to four with much smaller, compact equipment. In addition, Mega-Tandem™ MSRW™ System’s smaller size allowed a significant reduction of the number of tractor-trailers needed to deliver the product into an already congested area.

“We actually had three choices of materials for the wall,” stated Nathan Jackson, President of Jackson Jones Construction. “Since the project entailed cutting into the property, the city actually consulted with the homeowner in regard to the final selection. When you combine price considerations and the actual look of the wall, I’m not sure there’s a better material out there especially compared with the big block system. I’ve had so many positive comments about the wall, and both the homeowners and the city are very pleased with it.”

Belgard’s Mega-Tandem™ MSRW™ System provides the natural appearance of chiseled stone that complements any landscape. Great for use in a wide range of commercial hardscape projects, the innovative, versatile system can be used to create attractive, curved or straight retaining and freestanding landscape walls. Its innovative design system creates sturdy walls and makes work easier. In addition, Mega-Tandem™ MSRW™ System’s long-term durability with an 8,500-PSI compression strength rating makes it ideal for northern climates with harsh freeze/thaw cycles.