Excavation and Fill


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31 23 00
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Use this 3-part SimpleSpecs specification template to specify excavation, filling, backfilling, and compacting of soils for building and paving subgrades.

What is it?

Excavation and fill, backfilling, and compacting of soils are all important processes in the construction of building and paving subgrades.

Here is an overview of each process:

Excavation: The removal of soil or rock from a construction site to create a level surface for building or paving. Excavation may require the installation of underground utilities such as water pipes, electrical lines, or drainage systems. This may be done by hand or with heavy equipment such as excavators or bulldozers.

Filling: The process of adding soil or other materials to a construction site to create a level surface. Filling may be necessary when the excavation has created a depression in the ground or if the site needs to be raised to a certain level.  To accommodate the construction of the building or pavement.

Backfilling: This is the process of replacing soil around a foundation or retaining wall after it has been installed. The backfill material is compacted to ensure that it is stable and will not settle over time. Backfilling is important to ensure that the foundation or retaining wall is properly supported and to prevent water from penetrating the structure.

Compacting: The process of compressing soil to make it more stable and less prone to settling. It’s important for building and paving subgrades to ensure that the surface is level and can support the weight of the building or pavement. Using a heavy roller or vibrating plate compactor, the soil is then tested for the compaction to ensure maximum rates have been achieved.


This section should be prepared based on the findings of a geotechnical report prepared by a licensed geotechnical engineer and in conjunction with the project’s structural engineer.

Related SimpleSpecs templates:

31 22 00 – Grading

31 50 00 Excavation Support Systems

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