The first step of any land development project is rough grading, the initial cleaning up and contouring of the raw land.

It is the process of clearing all debris and vegetation from raw land that will become a building lot, then modifying the typography as needed for the project.

Clearing and grading contractors prepare the site for the next step in the development process, leaving a pad that’s ready for further addition and development, the construction of the building foundation, and the building itself.

The last part of the development and construction process is final grading, which is the final contouring of the finished building lot.

Site Clearing

Site clearing is the first step in taking a wild, overgrown piece of raw land and turning it into a clean, level building lot.

It’s the step before rough grading services begin, involving the removal of trees, stumps, and brush or cutting and grubbing, as it’s also known.

To allow grading work to be done with few issues, all vegetation including deep tree roots, huge boulders, and any other debris on the land, must be removed and properly disposed.

Cutting and Filling

The next step in the rough land grading process is contouring the land to turn hills and valleys into a suitable, and supported flat building pad.

Depending on the natural typography, this may involve mass excavation such as cutting out large chunks of land from some spots to lower them, or adding fill to low spots to raise them.

It may also involve creating transitions from one elevation to another, each elevation being leveled and prepared as another building pad.

The goal of the grading contractors performing this part of the process is to use the existing soil at the job site to do the land leveling so there is no need to bring in fill from elsewhere.

Doing so not only saves money; it also reduces the possibility of drainage issues due to differences in soil types.

This stage also involves a step known as over-excavation to prep the land for the foundation of the building by digging below the finished pad elevation to remove soil and/or rework any soil that is deemed unsuitable and make it competent for a foundation to be installed.

Ensuring Proper Drainage

After all clearing, cutting, and filling of the site has been completed and a building pad remains, grading services will then install onsite drainage systems.

The location of drainage pipes, drains, and canals must be decided prior to any excavating and grading, as the final location of the drainage system must take pad size and location, soil type, and other factors into consideration.

An improperly planned and installed drainage system can be a critical mistake that allows for flooding and runoff at the site that becomes the responsibility of the land developer once the land is purchased. 

Rely On Professional Grading Contractors

Although every part of a building project requires precision, it is the first steps consisting of rough grading and land preparation in the land development process which can be the most critical.

To get it right, contractors must know about moving soil to create level pads as well as typography, soil makeup, and how to direct drainage away from those pads to prevent damage to the entire building site.

Work with an experienced and knowledgeable grading service that understands all of this and will expertly prepare a building pad for the next steps in the land development process: wet utilities!

Need Rough Grading Contractors in Conroe Texas?

JWhit Construction Offers Expert Rough Grading Services!

Call (936) 213-3385 to Learn More!


Land Development Series:

Land Development – Part One – Overview
Land Development – Part Two – Rough Grading
Land Development – Part Three – Web Utilities
Land Development – Part Four – Dry Utilities
Land Development – Part Five – Fencing
Land Development – Part Six – Finish Grading
Land Development – Part Seven – Flatwork
Land Development – Part Eight – Landscaping