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Property Surveying Blog
Written by Bradley Mackenzie
Party Wall Agreements, also known as Party Wall Awards deal with a number of different legal provisions that the building owner (the owner undertaking the work) needs to adhere to.

The Party Wall Agreement provisions can range from the working hours to the manner in which the Party Wall works will take place.

In this short blog post, we will be looking at Party Wall foundations and in particular the benefit of the building owner’s foundations being undertaken in bays.

The first thing to clarify is a building owner’s foundation being dug in bays is only used when the location of the proposed foundation is alongside an existing structure, or, the structure itself is being underpinned.

In practice, this means that a 5m stretch of foundations would be dug in 5 individual 1m bays as opposed to the entire trench being dug and filled at once. Before the second bay is dug, the first bay would need to be fully filled with concrete, the concrete would also need to have set.

This manner of construction ensures that the structure being underpinned, or the structure alongside the proposed foundations is fully supported during the construction process.

In practice, the sequence of the bays would be similar to the illustration below.

 

 In this case, before the second bay can be dug the first would need to be filled, and so on.

By undertaking this form of foundation the building owner is ensuring that the adjoining owner’s property is put through the least amount of risk of movement as possible as in effect the structure will always remain fully supported.

Foundations such as this take a little longer than a conventional trench, therefore it is important to ensure that the added time is always taken into account during the construction process.