The D4R7 Reinforced Soil Retaining Walls in Bratislava, Slovakia

Elena Gil, Carlos Serrano, Carlos Pereira, Pedro Osso, Juan Lima, Ivan P. Damians

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This paper presents the extensive use of reinforced soil retaining walls in the D4-Motorway and R7-Expressway Project in Bratislava (Slovakia). The D4R7 Project, with a total of 47,100 m2 of total facing area among all 60 reinforced soil wall structures involved, corresponds to one of the largest mechanically stabilized earth wall applications in a single project in the last five years in Europe. The VSoL® reinforced soil retaining wall system used in this project were both with polymeric strips and steel ladders reinforcement types, comprising retained earth solutions as simple walls with heights up to 15 meters, with or without backslopes on top, true and false (piled) bridge abutments, back-to-back cases, as well as different facing solutions with precast panel and welded wire mesh stone facing alternatives. The paper provides a general presentation and specific data resulting from the design calculations, materials, production, and construction of the walls, specifically focusing on the true bridge abutments and stone facing alternatives installed. Additionally, this study provides sensitivity analyses in the mechanical performance verifications for both ultimate and serviceability limit states through 2D FEM modeling calculations assuming both polymeric strips and steel ladders reinforcement types.


reinforced soil bridge abutment, polymeric strip reinforcement, numerical modeling, facing displacements.


Gil, E., Serrano, C., Pereira, C., Osso, P., Lima, J., Damians, I. P. (2022). The D4R7 Reinforced Soil Retaining Walls in Bratislava, Slovakia, Vol. 7, Issue 2, p.13-33. doi: 10.4417/IJGCH-07-02-02


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