Reinforced Earth™ Panel Walls Reinforced Earth™ Panel Walls Reinforced Earth™ Panel Walls

Precast Panel Reinforced Earth™ Walls

RECO Reinforced Earth™ walls & VSL Retained Earth™ walls.

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General Information

RE Panel walls (marketed as RECO Reinforced Earth™ walls or VSL Retained Earth™ walls) are a composite system of a face panel - generally concrete and a steel reinforcement element - either in the form of a steel strip or welded mesh, that is positively connected one to the other such that a stable unified gravity soil mass may be formed. The facing panel is generally a precast concrete unit that provides local soil stability and a “face” for compaction of the retained soil.

Reinforced Earch Panel Wall

The panel may incorporate some special colour, texture or pattern to enhance the visual effect of the structure.

The steel reinforcing elements extend from the rear face of the concrete panel into the retained soil mass such that there is an effective increase in the shear capacity of the soil. The use of steel soil reinforcement elements allows the construction of retaining walls to very tall heights with the ability to withstand very large vertical and horizontal loads that are commonly associated with mining, bridge and highway structures. These specialist panel wall types are generally recognized as the single most appropriate technical solution to many specific retaining wall applications, where the tensile stresses generated within the structure are of such magnitude, that the use of alternate polymeric solutions such as a geogrid, becomes technically not feasible or uneconomical to use.


Retaining Solutions promotes these wall types as a very effective technical solution for the construction of heavily loaded retaining structures in the major infrastructure markets throughout Australia. Retaining Solutions is able to provide the specialist construction skills that are required for walls of this critical nature.

RE Panels are generally delivered to site direct from the manufacturers casting plant along with the custom designed steel reinforcement elements to ensure that the generally repetitive nature of erection of panels, connection of steel reinforcement elements and placement and compaction of backfill over the steel reinforcement elements can proceed quickly and cost effectively.


The introduction of these wall types occurred in Australia in the late 1970’s. To date there have been hundreds of these walls successfully installed throughout Australia. The design of these proprietary wall types is generally carried out by the manufacturer of the system. Generally the very critical application of these wall types will require a detailed analysis of foundation conditions, applied loadings, service life, soil properties and potential

environmental issues, both long and short term that may be associated with the wall construction. Any changes to the size, shape and position of surcharge loads originally adopted for the wall design as a result of change of vehicle loadings, additional embankment height or structure loadings may compromise the wall design.


The use of materials such as concrete and steel that are used in this system of retaining wall type is well documented, researched and understood. For specific environmental concerns, specialty concrete mixes may be suggested in the manufacture of panels as well as special treatments for the steel reinforcement supplied.

It is important that surface water run-off and ground water movement is controlled over the life of the structure. Water that contains corrosive contaminants may have an adverse effect on both metallic and concrete components.


RE Panel walls are available in a broad range of colours and textures. Local materials are used in the production of these precast panels and the exposed panel surface can be colored to compliment the natural surroundings.

Panel texturing may include raised relief, sandblast finish, exposed aggregate and conventional smooth faced concrete. The range of architectural treatments if required is only limited by the imagination of the client.

Design flexibility

RE Panel wall systems are able to accommodate curves, transitions and abrupt changes in direction easily. For walls of a temporary nature alternate facing systems such as mesh

may be incorporated rather than the concrete facing panel. Retaining Solutions should be contacted to provide advice on a suitable facing should the works be temporary in nature.

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Features & Benefits

  • Ability to withstand very high imposed loadings associated with major retaining wall construction in mine, bridge and highway construction works
  • Significant cost advantages over other traditional retaining wall systems in critical applications such as described above
  • Proven 30 year performance in Australia
  • Aesthetic Appeal
  • Rapid Construction


  • Mass gravity walls
  • Reinforced soil structures
  • Sea walls
  • Coastal protection
  • Erosion prevention
  • Wing walls
  • Stream channels
  • Bridge abutments
  • Tunnel access walls
  • Temporary highway slip stabilisation
  • Embankment stabilisation
  • Temporary bin storage

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