Ground Improvement for International Container Terminal at Webb Dock

Dr Kejing Chen, Associate Director at AECOM


The International Container Terminal at Webb Dock in Melbourne involved ground improvement of a reclaimed site underlain by high compressible marine clays referred to locally as Coode Island Silt (CIS). The proposed development was to impose additional ground surcharge from the stack of 5 containers high and repeated loads from Automated Stacking Cranes. It was estimated that without ground improvement the development could potentially be subjected to settlement of up to 500 mm over the 27 year design life. Ground improvement was necessary in order to satisfy the operational and maintenance requirements for the development.

The pre-loading study comprised a review of the site reclamation history, followed by the consolidation back analysis using finite element modelling to study the historical settlements associated with the previous reclamation and land use and their effect on the future development with and without the adoption of pre-loading. The monitoring of pre-loading was also undertaken using settlement plates, inclinometers and vibrating wire piezometers, that were employed to verify the target consolidation settlements.

This presentation will focus on the pre-loading – one of the ground improvement methods adopted for the project. Other methods, such as CMCs and impact rolling will be briefly discussed.

About Dr Kejing Chen

Dr Kejing Chen is an Associate Director at AECOM Melbourne who is currently working as a Geotechnical Design Lead for Technical Advisory Services of LXRA. He obtained both his Bachelor and Master degrees in China in the early 1980s, and PhD in University of New South Wales in 1997. Kejing has over 30 year experience in geotechnical engineering. His expertise includes: soft soils, slopes, ground retention and piling. In the last ten years Kejing has been the design lead for many major projects, including Regional Rail Link- City to Maribyrnong River, Victorian International Container Terminal Development at Webb Dock, Melbourne Metro Tunnel Project and Level Crossing Removal Projects.

Venue location

Engineers Australia members participating in AGS technical sessions can record attendance on their personal CPD logs. Members should refer to Engineers Australia CPD policy for details on CPD types, requirements and auditing guidelines.