The Purpose and Requirements of a Foundation
The importance of a proper foundation, for a construction project, is something that cannot be stressed enough.
A foundation is crucial for carrying the load of a substructure. The purpose of a foundation, however, goes far beyond providing a reliable structure to build upon. A foundation is thus the main source of stability in any structure.
When it is built to be strong, it will allow for a more stable structure, which is very important in construction. It is because buildings cannot be replaced every few years. When a construction project is being planned, it is being done with the intent that it will last a very long time.
Foundations must thus be planned and have proper designs to direct the architect, construction project engineer, and manager, as well as the entire construction team, to build a proper surface, that supports the substructure firmly.
A foundation also needs to be uniquely designed for its structure, to help avoid any lateral movements from the supporting material, which can take place differently in different materials. Given that the foundation also distributes loads from structures, over a bigger area and from the soil underneath it, the transferred load must also allow a bearing capacity for the soil.
Requirements for a proper foundation
Every foundation has a set of basic requirements that need to be met, for it to be able to carry out its purpose. Both the design and the construction thereof should sustain and transmit the imposed loads back to the soil.
To avoid differential settlements, one should have a rigid base, for the foundation. Depending on the soil, as well as the area it gets built on, the foundation might be required to be somewhat deeper than usual. It is mainly due to the shrinkage or swelling, which may occur, due to temperature change. Foundations are generally built deeper in areas where there are stronger winds, hurricanes, and locations that may be more prone to natural disasters.
The area chosen for the construction project, must thus also be taken into consideration, along with the surrounds thereof, which might affect the building in the future.