Goochland County has soils that have the potential to shrink and/or swell with seasonal changes in moisture content. To reduce the risk of structural problems, the BI Dept. implemented this shrink/swell soil policy in accordance with USBC requirements.
Effective June 3, 2019 - A shrink-swell soil report will be required at permit submittal for the following types of permits:
- All new single-family dwellings, duplexes and townhomes
- Residential attached structures (including but not limited to additions, screen porches, sunrooms, or any expansion to the footprint of the existing structure)
- Residential detached structures exceeding 400 square feet in area
- All commercial construction
***Construction of a residential deck or pool does not require a shrink swell report***
The shrink-swell soil report shall:
- Be completed by a registered Professional Engineer or Certified Professional Soil Scientist or Certified Professional Geologist in the Commonwealth of Virginia
- Include samples from the area within the footprint of the proposed structure. Note that general soil testing during subdivision review will not be accepted as a site-specific shrink/swell report.
- Be submitted with the building permit application, two stamped copies are required
When a soil report confirms the presence of shrink/swell soils, the permit applicant shall then be responsible for providing the Department of Building Inspection with a site-specific footing /foundation plan designed by a registered Commonwealth of Virginia professional engineer or architect to overcome the limitations presented by the soils. The footing/foundation plan shall be submitted with the building permit application.
The Department of Building Inspection will review stamped third-party reports to ensure that the approved footing and foundation plan has been constructed as per the county approved drawings.