Ireland - Services


Geotechnical Engineering

RPS offers a truly integrated Geotechnical and Contaminated Land consultancy service for all developments through our team of Geotechnical Engineers, Engineering Geologists and Contaminated Land specialists.

Our understanding of multi-disciplinary projects, combined with a strong engineering geology capability and an understanding of what our client is trying to achieve means that we are able to develop the best possible ground model. Using our expertise and knowledge, we can then interpret the model, identify geotechnical risks and link this to geotechnical designs which achieve the best commercial solution. We utilise current UK best practise and standards including Eurocode 7 (BS EN 1997-1 & EN 1997-2) and relevant Normatives. 

With our integrated team we are adept at recognising issues at an early stage and working with the client to resolve them practicably and cost effectively.

We design and carry out geotechnical assessments to assist development, at all stages of projects including:

Comprehensive desk studies

Detailed intrusive geotechnical investigations

Foundation and pavement assessment and design

Ground improvement assessments

Slope stability assessments

Earthworks specifications

Contract procurement

Risks posed from coal mining

Gas protection measures

Landfill design and

Engineering Construction Quality Assurance

Contaminated land - investigation and remediation design.

Case Studies

Asbestos Contaminated Soil

Asbestos Contaminated Soil

Clare County Council

RPS has been engaged by Clare County Council to advise on potential asbestos contamination at nine sites.

RPS has been engaged by Clare County Council to provide expert consultancy services relating to potential asbestos contamination at nine sites in the Kilkee and Kilrush areas of County Clare. RPS procured and managed the site investigation contract to determine the extent of the potential asbestos contamination, including the presence of asbestos containing materials (ACMs) and fibres within the soil matrix. Extensive air monitoring was also required. RPS is currently developing remediation options for each site in line with legislative requirements, best practice, and health & safety practices. The project involves liaison with key stakeholders including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Health & Safety Authority (HSA) and the Health Service Executive (HSE).

Corrib Onshore Gas Pipeline

Corrib Onshore Gas Pipeline

Shell E&P Ireland Ltd. (SEPIL)

RPS has met various geotechnical design challenges on the Corrib Project with practical solutions supported by detailed design calculations.

RPS has provided geotechnical input to the project in the following areas:

Site assessments including logging of geomorphological features

Management of ground investigations works (marine based and onshore)

Geotechnical input to the project EIS

Consideration of alternative construction methodologies

Compilation of a Geotechnical Risk Register

Interpretation of ground investigation information along the proposed tunnel route

Detailed geotechnical design of the tunnelling compound (>3.7ha), stone road (for sections of onshore pipeline in bog), tunnel reception pit (and its interface with the gas pipeline), landfall valve installation (LVI)

Miscellaneous geotechnical calculations (slope stability, settlement etc.)

Detailed materials balances for peat and stone for the project

Detailed design of sheet-piled trenches

Review of temporary works designs

Geotechnical support to SEPIL during construction

Construction began in July 2011 and was completed in December 2015. The Corrib Onshore Gas Pipeline won the Engineers Ireland Outstanding Project of the Year Award in 2016.

Former Site Tip Investigation and Remediation

Former Site Tip Investigation & Remediation

Nuclear Licensed Site

RPS was appointed for the site investigation and subsequent remediation of a former site tip at a nuclear licensed defence site which was previously a World War II Royal Ordnance Factory.

The site investigation and risk assessment confirmed soils within the tip to be impacted with asbestos, chemical contaminants and explosive residues.

We developed the remediation strategy for mitigating contamination risks and prepared a detailed Engineering Design and Remediation Specification. The engineering design included 3D digital terrain modelling, volumetric calculations, CAD engineering drawings and visualisations.  

The remediation strategy comprised the excavation and re-profiling of the asbestos contaminated tip material, and the placement of protective engineered capping materials to create a sculptured landscape feature.

To maximise the re-use of materials on site, the remediation strategy also included the adoption of current environmental best practice CL:AIRE ‘Definition of Waste: Development Industry Code of Practice’ (CoP) which promotes the most sustainable reuse of site derived materials and the use of a Materials Management Plan (MMP).

We supervised the remediation and undertook a programme of groundwater monitoring. A Verification Report was also prepared to demonstrate compliance with the strategy and the MMP.

The sustainable remediation strategy design allowed 99% of the excavated materials to be re-used within the development.

Glebe Farm

Glebe Farm


Smiths Concrete Limited and Hanson Aggregates

RPS has been providing a wide range of consulting services to support environmental compliance of the landfill permit.

Our support comprises liaison with the Environment Agency with regard to any permitting issues, quarterly monitoring and reporting review of trigger levels and landfill performance on an annual basis. We also advised on Construction Quality Assurance (CQA) planning and the supervision and validation of any earthworks associated with landfill cell construction.

Glebe Farm combines sand and gravel mineral extraction and inert landfill activities. The landfill includes an area restored in 2007 and progressing the under closure phase. It also includes an area of active infilling.

From a CQA perspective, RPS works to support the design and implementation in the construction of the lining works maximising on-site resources. All works are delivered with a focus on cost effective and sustainable solutions.

Newhaven Energy Recovery Facility

Newhaven Energy Recovery Facility

Hochtief AG

RPS was appointed to offer a wide range of support services to support the redevelopment of a grossly contaminated site at an Energy Recovery Facility.

Due to the contamination status of the site, the development proposals and the site location (adjacent to the River Ouse Estuary) all assessments and remedial works were subject to a significant level of scrutiny by the regulators and other stakeholders.

RPS undertook works to support the design and build contractor in the discharge of Planning conditions, Engineering design and Environmental compliance/Permitting. All works were delivered with a focus on cost effective development. The key parts of our support included:

Detailed human health and controlled waters risk assessment was undertaken reducing the remedial requirements presented within the inherited reports, significantly

A remedial methodology was developed allowing materials to be treated and reused onsite

Geotechnical investigation and assessment to support design of 19m deep waste basement

Liaison with Environment Agency to agree appropriate protocols and limits for discharge consents.

All works were monitored and comprehensive audit trails created.

Slope Stability Assessment

Slope Stability Assessment

Northern Ireland

Invest Northern Ireland

RPS was commissioned to undertake comprehensive site assessments in support of earthworks design for a proposed new industrial estate.

The proposed scheme requires a large cut and fill balance involving approximately 1 million m3 of soil and rock movement. We scoped a suitable intrusive site investigation to allow for detailed design which was further supplemented following detailed logging identifying relic slip planes within the glacial deposits. Artesian groundwater conditions were identified.

Slopes analysis was undertaken to establish practical earthworks solutions to maximise the development footprints whilst minimising the costs associated with addressing the stability issues for approximately 1800 linear meters of slope. Materials were classified and assessed in order to establish reuse criteria within the development footprint identifying the potential need for processing and treatment.

Currently assessment of abnormal construction costs is being undertaken to ensure a best value approach for the development maximising retention of soils on site whilst mitigating the potential costs of construction associated with steep, previously failed slopes.

Thornton Waste Facility

Thornton Waste Facility


Churngold Construction Ltd

RPS provided an independent review of the design approach associated with the surface water chamber at the Thornton Waste Facility. This review follows failure of the water tightness of the concrete seal at the base of the shaft during and following construction.

Our key objective was to review the various design strategies proposed for the construction of the shaft, and in particular:

Comment in relation to the identified site ground and groundwater conditions

Comment on the appropriateness of methodology proposed by the design house.

RPS undertook a numerical review of each of the options provided, considering both temporary and permanent cases with factor of safeties calculated for flexure, friction and buoyancy.We concluded that the design options did not consider some of the key constraints for the site and the options were considered inadequate.

In previous years, we have completed ground investigation, quantitative risk assessment to human health or to water receptors; remediation options appraisal as well as validation of implemented remedial works.