Seismic design of retaining structures for residential sites in greater Christchurch


Guidance on the seismic design of retaining walls[PDF 920 KB]

The assessment and design of retaining walls guidance.

About this document

  • Published on 17 November 2014
  • Of interest to Building consent authorities, Designers, Engineers,
  • 2nd edition


You can use these guidelines primarily for assessing and designing retaining walls for normal risk residential sites in greater Christchurch. High risk walls, including very high walls, are beyond the scope of these guidelines and may require more detailed and specific engineering.

Repairing and rebuilding houses affected by the Canterbury earthquakes supplementary guidance.


Worked examples to resist earthquake loading

Design of cantilever pole retaining walls

Design of concrete cantilever retaining wall

Design of crib retaining wall

Design of a tied-back retaining wall

We will provide additional worked examples as they are developed.

This information is published by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Chief Executive. It is a general guide only and, if used, does not relieve any person of the obligation to consider any matter to which the information relates according to the circumstances of the particular case. Expert advice may be required in specific circumstances. Where this information relates to assisting people: