- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 23 Feb 2017
Rubble trench foundation
This is a variation of the trench fill foundation, and is a traditional construction method which uses loose stone or rubble to minimise the concrete requirement and improve drainage. It follows the same approach as a French drain, with a trench that is filled with crushed stone letting any water drain down and away from the foundation.
This approach has been used in various guises for thousands of years but it was popularised in the 20th century by the architect Frank Lloyd Wright, and has been promoted as being more environmentally-friendly than other foundation types.
The bottom of the trench should slope with an even descent of at least 3 cm for every 1 m of trench, which diverts the water towards one point, from which it can be diverted away through an outlet or to a dry well.
The trench should be lined with a geotextile material to prevent the surrounding soil from clogging up the trench and outlet. It is then filled with angular and washed stones of average size 2.5-5 cm, with them being compacted at every 30 cm layer using either a pneumatic or hand-powered tamper.
 Find out more
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
Featured articles and news
Proactive measures to secure property during extreme times.
Safety guidance from BSI released; comments requested.
Scour can make river currents structurally damaging.
Indoor environmental quality looks at air quality and other wellbeing factors.
A procurement method associated with Public Private Partnerships.
Infrastructure can use digital technology to encourage human growth.
Robotics and the construction industry.
ECA comments on CLC's three-phase recovery plan.
Their diplomatic and architectural history.
The origins of the six volume series.
Built to defend British waters, only to serve as pirate radio stations later.
Wellbeing to influence mix of home and office based working.
An introduction to cobotics.
Survey reports on outlook for the engineering sector.
A simple path to possible error avoidance.
Construction + technology = ConTech.