The term groundworks refers to work done to prepare sub-surfaces for the start of construction work.
Aside from any demolition or site enabling works that may need to be carried out, groundworks are usually the first stage of a construction project and may include:
Ground investigation. Site clearance. Substructure and ground stabilisation works. Site services. Landscaping.
As a matter of good practice and a legal requirement of most local authorities, a ground investigation of the site is generally carried out to help identify past land uses, stability and potential problems. These investigations allow data to be accumulated and used for effective design, as well as allowing any potential defects or issues, such as contamination or abandoned mine workings, to be considered. An assessment of ground conditions typically includes geology, hydrology, hydrogeology, soil conditions and contaminated land issues.