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GeoTech

Case Study (Due Diligence)

OVERVIEW

In Carbon Canyon, CA, a large builder was doing due diligence on a property that had once been allocated for a school but had been paused for a number of years due to the identification of landsliding below the site. Before purchasing the land and developing it, the builder contacted the original firm for their opinion on the land quality and development potential. The original firm proposed spending $150,000 to bore the holes they believed were needed to investigate. The builder was not satisfied with that conclusion and the President of the company contacted G3SoilWorks for a second opinion and proposal.

 

PROBLEM

  • Evidence of landslides prevented site from being eligible for school building.
  • The original firm’s proposal would cost $150,000 to simply confirm that landslides had occurred in the location, without including plans or suggestions for mitigation.
  • Borings would be relatively useless as they would not explain groundwater issues, block glide, etc. that would affect building and stability.
  • The building company needed G3 to make an assessment and submit it within the week.

 


SOLUTION

Rather than bore holes, G3 requested a nominal fee to conduct extensive desktop research. Land sliding and geological hazards were found, which would potentially prevent a school from being built. G3 proposed additional research that would provide feedback on costs associated with stabilizing the land for use on the school or another alternative project. By walking the site, taking measurements, drawing up geologic cross-sections, reviewing areal photos of disturbed vegetation, studying groundwater patterns, looking at how homes in the area were thriving, G3 was able to use that information to placed the client’s development on a map and determine if the purchase would be profitable.

 


CONCLUSION

Using a full, “boots on the ground” approach to fieldwork, G3 delivered information about risks and remediation at a fraction (about 10%) of the $150,000 cost that the original firm proposed to simply bore holes. G3 provided the client with information that enabled them to consider either other building projects or selling to a third party who didn’t require the same intensive building requirements as the school district. Ultimately, the client determined that it would be too costly to purchase the land, remediate, and build, and they were very pleased that they did not spend $150,000 to reach that conclusion.