The importance of a Geological Assessment

29th March 2023

Knowing what’s beneath the ground is essential for any civil engineering or construction project. The Geological Assessment is normally phased, commencing with a desk-based assessment which is used to design meaningful intrusive ground investigation.

Initial Geological Review

Geological AssessmentFrom the onset, The initial geological assessment, mapping and data review phase is a process of identifying potential geo-hazards that may impact a development (such as contaminated land, poor or hazardous geological conditions, mining etc). This allows for the design of an appropriate and targeted Phase 2 Ground Investigation.

The geological assessments Northpoint undertake are routinely part of wider studies and strategies, such as Preliminary Risk Assessments. Our geologists have a wealth of resources including mapping, GIS, memoirs and licensed information. Once the initial geological assessment is complete, we will have a good understanding of the likely ground conditions beneath a site.

Intrusive Works

Soil, rock and other minerals beneath your planned build should be fully assessed using the latest British Geological Survey mapping and modelling techniques in compliance with the Association of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Specialists (AGS) and British Standard.

A robust soil investigation helps us to establish any potential risks to the integrity of structures built on your site and future end-users. Therefore, Phase 2: Ground Investigation will be tailored to investigate geological features/hazards identified during the Phase 1: preliminary risk assessment stage.

As part of a geological assessment, the purpose the ground investigation stage is to identify the nature and characteristics of the geology beneath a proposed development area. Consequently, this phase includes describing the ground and groundwater conditions, and should be performed by a qualified engineering geologist.

Therefore, information from the ground investigation is collated to prepare various ground profile sections illustrating the strata layers.

Considering Mining & Minerals

The legacy of former underground coal workings impacts many regions of the UK. Shallow abandoned mine workings can be an unexpected constraint for any new development. In addition to the coal fields, the extraction of other resources such as chalk and gypsum to name a few, all pose a potential risk to your site as a result of ground instability.

At the initial stages, Northpoints review of historical plans and mining records may well find that your site was once part of the British coalfields. Our preliminary geological assessment will investigate your location and provide you with a full appraisal to satisfy the planning application when developing in a high-risk area. The mining risk assessment will also form the basis for a targeted intrusive Ground Investigation, which will be undertaken in the next Phase 2: Site Investigation.

If your project build requires geotechnical support, our expert team of geologists are here to help. Whether you require Phase 1 Desk Study, a Mining Assessment or site investigation, contact Northpoint.