WSP is known for its in-depth understanding of ground behaviour - both soil and rock - and the influence of groundwater conditions on design and construction. 

Our understanding of geological structures, materials and processes, ground-structure interaction, and construction technologies, combined with the systematic application of investigative, scientific, engineering, and risk management techniques provide practical solutions to ground related issues. 

Our geotechnical teams work in close coordination with planners, and both structural and civil engineers. They are typically involved in all aspects of a project from early planning studies through to the construction phase, as well as in the inspection and rehabilitation of existing facilities. This approach provides continuity, and allows for the inter-disciplinary collaboration that is essential to the successful delivery of complex projects.

Putting Our Experience to Work for You

Geotechnical engineering is a fundamental component of infrastructure and building projects, including work for tunnel and underground structures, conventional and long-span bridges, buildings, transit and rail facilities, marine and offshore facilities, mines, airports, water projects, and energy facilities. WSP provides clients with a comprehensive range of specialty geotechnical services required for the planning, design, and implementation of ground engineering projects, as well as to manage the ground risks associated with all infrastructure projects. Our capability in geotechnical engineering is underpinned by an extensive range of expertise and experience of our complementary team of over 600 geotechnical engineering professionals worldwide.

Some of the specialty services provided by our teams include: geotechnical subsurface investigations, structure foundations – such as deep foundations, shallow foundations, testing, supervision, and review, and building foundations - marine and offshore structures, tunnels, caverns and shafts, earth retaining structures, ground improvement, slopes and landslides, embankments, groundwater modeling and dewatering, deep excavations, pavements, earthquake engineering, soil and rock mechanics, numerical analyses, and forensic investigations.

Some of the projects where we have performed geotechnical work include:

  • The National September 11 Memorial and Museum in New York City

  • The Zayed National Museum in Abu Dhabi, UAE

  • Kruunuvuorensilta Kruunuvuori Bridge in Finland

  • The Tran Thi Ly bridge in Da Nang, Vietnam

  • Moorebank Intermodal Yard in Sydney, Australia

  • Manchester Metrolink, in Manchester, United Kingdom

  • First Street Tunnel, in Washington DC, United States

  • City Line in Stockholm, Sweden

  • Eurasia Tunnel, in Istanbul, Turkey

Geotechnical Instrumentation

WSP has extensive experience with geotechnical instrumentation monitoring programs. Our key objective is to monitor and assess the response of ground and groundwater in existing conditions and throughout construction activities, compare the data against design limits, and identify any potential problems. Instrumentation programs are used to monitor ground and structure displacements, groundwater levels, ground vibrations, and stresses in temporary and permanent structural elements during and after construction, allowing rapid implementation of appropriate remedial measures before damage occurs.

Geotechnical instrumentation is particularly important for tunnel and other underground projects, during excavation for cut-and-cover structures in an urban setting, during installation of pile and drilled shaft foundations, and for assessing the performance of preloading and other ground improvement measures.

Detailed instrumentation programs were developed by WSP for the Bayview Station of the Sheppard Line of the Toronto Transit System, and the Number 7 Line Extension for New York City Transit. These instrumentation programs have included conventional, as well as state-of- the-art sophisticated geotechnical and structural instrumentation systems. As part of the program management teams for Boston’s Central Artery project and the California High Speed Rail project, our geotechnical staff developed guidelines and provided oversight for the extensive instrumentation monitoring programs.

Geotechnical for Mining

WSP provides geotechnical investigation, design, and construction services for mine infrastructure development. Our services extend from feasibility through detailed design, and lender technical advisor services related to access and haul roads, foundations for drag line equipment, conveyors, buildings, roadway and railway bridges, construction material investigations, slope stability assessment, and embankment engineering. We provide services for underground and open pit mines, and quarries. Our team also investigates mining-induced ground subsidence, and develops post-mining treatment measures.