WIT Press

Soil Bio-engineering Experiences In River Works Using Wire Mesh Products


Free (open access)





Page Range

351 - 362




1,786 kb

Paper DOI



WIT Press


M. Vicari & D. Crowther


The development of sound engineering practices combined with aesthetically pleasing and environmentally enhancing solutions requires the designers to understand how to design using \“living” and \“inert” materials together by best combining both types of materials. The incorporation of vegetation through the use of soil bioengineering techniques improves the surface stability through the vegetative rooting system, however it is essential that the materials provide adequate strength and resistance during the initial stage of recovery of the project, as the vegetation will grow stronger over time. The challenge for the most appropriate choice is to identify a system capable of providing the required shear resistance and to be able to incorporate the most appropriate soil bioengineering treatment. Double twist steel wire products have shown an extraordinary capability for regeneration of the natural environment, since gabions and mattresses are filled with stones, soil and roots which eventually provide favourable developmental conditions. At the same time vegetation uses these structures as shelter during the initial growth phase, thus allowing these solutions to provide adequate structural and hydraulic performance even when plants are not fully developed yet. Apart from the integration aspects, a recent study has demonstrated how the use of gabions and Reno mattresses is a solution which reduces the impact on climate change, having a lower carbon footprint than equivalent traditional engineering solutions in terms of CO2 emissions. The paper presents a series of technical solutions realised in different environmental conditions to highlight the new design approach entailing river protection works and soil stabilisation. Keywords: double twist steel wire, bank protection, vegetated gabions, carbon footprint.


Keywords: double twist steel wire, bank protection, vegetated gabions, carbon footprint.