What Are The Different Methods Of Land Reclamation?

Land reclamation has been a widely practised technique all across the globe to provide extra land use for homes, ports, agriculture, urban and industrial uses. In this process, artificial land is created by either raising the level of seabeds, ocean and rivers or by draining the muddy portions of the sea and transporting it to other regions. There are many different ways to reclaim land and the method used is often dependent on the foundation soil, the topography of the soil and the type of filled land being used in that area. Based on the above factors, here are some of the top land reclamation methods and how they are done:

Top Land Reclamation Methods

Dry Filling: Used For Foreshore Locations With Good Seabed Soil

In this method of dry filling, a truck or conveyor belt transports large foundation rocks near foreshore locations to raise the waterbed level of the sea. Once the rocks are dumped, the land is filled with soil till the needed level and the land is extended towards the sea. This method results in a viscous slurry that creates loose fill that takes a while to become usable.

Direct Dumping: Used To Borrow Soil & Place It Under The Sea

In the direct dumping method, barges carry soil from borrowed lands and then transport them to the determined location. This soil is then dumped directly under the sea through an opening in the bottom of the barge. But this method can only raise the seabed level up to 2-3 metres and the remaining soil has to be filled by other means.

Hydraulic Filling: Used To Dredge & Pump Soil To A New Location

Hydraulic filling is one of the most common methods of land reclamation where usable granular soil is transported via a dredger and pipe. The soil is transported to the area using a dredger and is then pumped into the reclaimed land using a pipe. This pipe contains a mix of both water and soil and the ratio of this mix depends on the grain size and type of the soil being transported and dumped.

Sand Spreading: Used For Shallow Seabeds And When Soil Is Soft

Lastly, sand spreading is also a popular method of land reclamation that is used when the seabed is shallow or the soil is too soft to use any of the above methods. In this method, a barge is filled with sand and is then dispersed over the shallow seabed via the last two holes. This spreading method is not even and the barge needs to constantly move to ensure the sand is spread properly and covers the shallow seabed. This reclaimed land is evaluated based on its suitability and then used for a variety of purposes.


Thus, the above land reclamation methods can help create more usable land for industrial, housing, agricultural and urban uses and can help add more land or extend the seabeds. The type of land reclamation method that is used in an area will vary from place to place depending on the type of soil, topography and fill material required in that particular area.

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