Lot clearing and land grading are generally the first steps in most new construction and renovation projects. Before construction begins, the lot needs to be prepared by removing unwanted trees, bushes and other natural elements that may get in the way.
After land clearing, the lot also needs to be graded and leveled. The land grading process helps ensure that water runoff is directed to a designated spot where it won’t impact the lot or adjacent properties.
Whether you’re building a new structure, preparing for landscaping or making an addition to your home, Alpha Environmental has the specific tools and equipment needed to undertake lot clearing and grading for your project.
To get the lot ready for construction, it must be cleared to ensure it can match the project’s blueprints. There are several reasons to clear a piece of land.
- It creates open space for the project to begin, which allows large construction equipment to be brought on site.
- It reduces the fire risk by providing less natural kindling in case of a fire outbreak. It can also help slow the spread of wildfires by preventing the fire from spreading from the ground to the treetops.
- It eradicates pests that may be living in nearby shrubbery, giving you one less barrier to work around.
Land clearing can involve removing a number of different obstructions from the lot. Some common obstructions include:
Brush refers to smaller trees, bushes and other vegetation that is growing below the treeline. Clearing a lot of these types of growths can be difficult and time-consuming, which is why it’s important to hire professionals who have access to equipment that will make brush clearing easier. Enlisting the right crew from the start will expedite the process, saving you time and effort.
Properly removing large trees and stumps is impossible without the right equipment and expertise. Tree removal also has permit requirements and guidelines that must be followed to be compliant with local laws.
Street trees, private trees and heritage trees all have their own codes and standards, and some may need to be replaced. In Portland, tree removal permits are required for removing:
- Street trees: Trees that are growing in the city’s right-of-way or in a strip of land near city streets need approval to be removed.
- Private trees: Permits are usually required when trees on private property are 12 inches in diameter and 4.5 feet tall or larger.
- Heritage trees: These trees have been formally recognized due to their historical, horticultural or other significance and require a permit even just to prune.
Large rock formations and boulders can be a huge roadblock for any project. These obstructions are typically the toughest material to excavate and require specialized equipment. Our team of excavators is trained in quickly and properly removing the obstruction.
Precisely leveling the ground is vital to the success of any renovation or construction project. Lot grading often involves a reshaping of the land’s surface based on factors like:
- The land’s natural grading
- The type of soil
- The roughness of its surface
Land grading is important for proper water drainage. If you’re building a new structure, you’ll want water to drain away from the structure rather than towards it.
There are two types of drainage:
- Positive drainage: This occurs when runoff water is directed away from the structure and channeled to a place where it won’t impact your property or neighboring areas. Positive drainage can often be achieved by adding in bioswales or rain gardens.
- Negative drainage: This type of drainage can lead to puddles gathering around the building’s foundation, walls, roof and landscaping, which could cause costly damage after your project is complete. Runoff water that drains towards your structure can cause cracks in your foundation due to water weight. It can also cause mold and constant flooding. These problems can be avoided with proper lot grading.
Let Us Help with Site Preparation in Portland, OR
Lot clearing and grading are big projects that need to be handled correctly. If these services are not properly executed, it can put your entire project in jeopardy.The professionals at Alpha Environmental offer lot and land clearing as well as lot grading services to help you prepare to begin your construction. Contact us today to let us know how we can help!