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Old 08-17-2015, 07:52 AM   #1
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Alternatives To a Retaining Wall


Looking for alternative ideas for our front yard landscaping. Originally we wanted to have someone build a retaining wall starting under the window, and wind over to the driveway. Would be mostly bushes and flower beds, etc. Received a quote the other day for $3700+. A little over our budget, but not a deal-breaker yet. I'm looking for feedback on other ideas on what we can do (possibly ourselves), that looks great, is functional, and won't break the bank. It is a difficult space due to the sloped yard. Pics included.
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Old 08-17-2015, 09:26 AM   #2
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I would take out the concrete steps from the driveway over to the entry, it's doesn't meet code.

I would install something similar to the stone steps in the link below. Making it so it's kinda of round and meeting both planes. Then install a pond/fountain in the space in question.

https://www.google.com/search?q=ston...FQjYPgodKp4BVw

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Old 08-17-2015, 10:26 AM   #3
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Thanks for the feedback. As much as I would love to knock out the (out of code) steps and add a pond, I don't think that would be any cheaper than getting the Retaining Wall built unfortunately.
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Old 08-17-2015, 02:51 PM   #4
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I've gone through this question myself. I was getting ready to do a post on the retaining walls I put around the back of our house. Ours ended up being 12' high and 120' long. So a little larger then your project.
We got several quotes and they all came out to between 20-25$ per square foot. Looking at your space and estimating a 20' long wall about 3' high, your quote came in at 60$ per sq ft. It just seems high for a non-load bearing wall. I ended up doing my wall myself after gathering material and info from Boxely.com and allanblock.com (and youtube) . The key is make sure your base layer is level and you have proper drainage.

The answer your original question: Have you looked into Gabions? I'm starting to build a couple around my property. pros and cons to them. Pro is that they are cheap and easy to build, doos not require a perfectly level base, are self draining. Cons is that they will rust over time (20-30 years unless you use stainless steel) and can potentially have sharp edges.
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Old 08-18-2015, 04:15 PM   #5
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Everything I showed you wouldn't come close to $3700.

You were planning to DIY right.? I mean this is a DIY site....
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