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The Process of Seawall Construction

Updated: Jun 23, 2023

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Add value to your property with a Radtke seawall!


Interested in building a seawall for your property?


Seawall construction by Radtke Contractors involves the process of constructing a wall to help protect coastal communities and properties from water erosion.


We hope this article will be a helpful resource for you for understanding the different stages of seawall construction, types of seawalls you can choose from, and the advantages and disadvantages of seawall construction.


Step 1: Consultation

The process of seawall construction begins with a consultation with your local seawall construction company. First, you will meet with your seawall contractor or engineer to discuss the specific needs of your project. At this stage, your seawall contractor will review the site where you've been planning to build the seawall. From there, they will recommend the appropriate type of seawall for the location.


During this step you should also discuss the budget and timeline for the project with your seawall builder. A trustworthy seawall construction company will keep the project within your budget and timeline as discussed.


Take a look at our main seawall construction page here for more information about our services.


Step 2: Proposal

Following the initial consultation, your contractor or engineer can prepare a proposal for the seawall construction project. Included within the proposal should be the:

  • Cost estimate for the project,

  • Timeline for completion,

  • Type of seawall being construction,

  • Materials being used, and

  • Relevant details about the construction process.

Once all details have been prepared in the proposal, it will be presented to you, the property owner, for review and approval.

Rock rip rap and seawall

Step 3: Paperwork

Now your seawall contractor will start the paperwork process. During this step, they will obtain any necessary permits from the local government on your behalf. If needed, they will also complete any other required documentation to help take the headache of doing this work yourself.


Depending on the complexity of your seawall construction project, the paperwork process may take up to several weeks or more.


Step 4: Construction

With the initial consultation, proposal, and paperwork out of the way, you and your seawall building team can proceed with the actual construction process.


The process of seawall construction starts by excavating the site. Following that, your seawall building team will install the foundation, and construct the seawall. The overall construction from start to finish may take up to several weeks or months to complete, depending on the size or complexity of the project on hand.


Types of Seawall Construction

There are several types of seawall construction you can choose, (these should be included in your proposal). The different types of seawall include vertical, curved (or stepped), and mound seawalls.


  • Vertical seawalls. The most common type of seawall is the vertical seawall. These are constructed perpendicular to the shoreline and are commonly crafted from concrete or steel materials, which are designed to absorb the energy of the waves and protect the shoreline from erosion.

  • Curved/stepped seawalls. If you're looking for large concrete seawalls, the curved and stepped seawalls from Radtke may be a better option for your coastline. These seawalls are designed specifically to reduce the impact of waves on the seawall by slowing down and redirecting the energy of the waves as they come in.

  • Mound seawalls. Lastly, mound seawalls are constructed by creating a mound of earth and then covering it with a layer of rocks or other materials. These seawalls are typically used in areas with sloped shorelines where the waves are not as powerful.


Materials Used in Seawall Construction

Now that we've covered the different types of seawalls you can choose for your property or coastline, let's go over some of the common materials used.


Seawall materials can include concrete, steel, wood, and riprap. Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages, and the choice of material will depend on the location and your specific needs.

  • Concrete. This popular material is often utilized for seawall construction because it is durable, long-lasting, and can withstand the wear from saltwater.

  • Steel. This material is also exceptionally strong and has a lot of customization options available to match your specific needs.

  • Wood. If you need a more natural option and have low wave activity, a wooden seawall may be a suitable option for you. Wood is also more cost-effective. However, you'll want to keep in mind that it's not as durable when compared with steel or concrete.

  • Riprap. Lastly, another option besides a standard seawall construction is to use riprap. If you're not already familiar with what riprap is, it's essentially a combination of large rocks and boulders that can be used to protect the shoreline from erosion.

Choose Radtke for your next seawall or marine project!

Advantages of Seawall Construction

There are many advantages to choosing a seawall construction for your property. The main reason to invest in a seawall construction is to protect your shoreline more effectively from erosion and damage.


In turn, this will also help to increase your property's value, since you will have an overall reduced insurance cost since they are less susceptible to damage from natural disasters.


Disadvantages of Seawall Construction

While seawalls generally have more positives to your coastlines than not, it's important to keep a few disadvantages in mind before proceeding with a seawall construction.


For example, you should expect to pay a large cost for your seawall if you need a quality construction made of steel or concrete. Additionally, a seawall construction has an environmental impact that can impact nearby marine life. It's also worth noting that seawalls require routine maintenance for proper upkeep to further help to prevent erosion.


Lastly, make sure that you have chosen a trustworthy seawall construction company to take on the job. If a seawall is improperly constructed, you may be faced costly repairs or even property damage in the future.



Contact Radtke Contractors for Seawall Construction

Seawall construction is an important process that helps protect coastal communities and properties from the erosive forces of lake or ocean waters. Additionally, it's important to consider the potential drawbacks and ensure that proper maintenance and design are in place to prevent failure.


Let the marine contractor team at Radtke Contractors help you with your seawall construction! With decades of experience in various types of marine construction projects, you can rely on our team to provide a seawall construction that will greatly reduce wear and tear on your waterfront property. We can also provide maintenance tips for how to keep your seawall(s) lasting for as long as possible! Contact our seawall contractors today.


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