Why Land Grading is an Essential Part of Site Preparation

When you have a residential or commercial construction project in the pipelines, there’s a multitude of different site preparation processes you have to plan and budget for, including land clearing and excavation. One of the most important – and perhaps the least understood – parts of site preparation is “land grading”.

One of the leading excavation and demolition contractors in Northern Illinois and Southern Wisconsin, Bob Mahoney Excavating Inc. explain below what land grading is, and why it’s critical to the success of your construction project.

Land Grading: What it Entails

Also referred to as “land levelling”, land grading is carried out after the excavation work has been completed on a construction site. It involves cutting dirt from higher spots, and using it to fill lower spots. Therefore, it’s known as “cut and fill grading”.

The primary purpose of land grading is to achieve a smooth, level landscape with no elevation variations. This creates a level, stable base that is required for laying a solid foundation for the structure. The land grading process is comprised of the following steps:

  • Measure and design
  • Removing the top soil
  • Soil excavation (if and as needed)
  • Rough grading
  • Installing the irrigation (if and as needed)
  • Backfilling the soil
  • Final grading

Proper and efficient land grading requires specific expertise and specialized equipment, which is why it’s best to hire a professional land grading contractor for the job. You’ll also need to locate underground water, electric and other utility lines in the area, and may also need to acquire a city permit before you can start digging.

The Importance of Land Grading

When it comes to building a structure on uneven ground, one of the most important considerations is water drainage. If proper land grading is not performed during the site preparation stage, the water will not drain properly; and instead of moving away from the structure, it could be channeled towards it.

If this happens, the water from rainfall will start accumulating around the foundations of the structure, potentially causing damage to the cinder blocks, or even flooding the basement.


A leading excavation and demolition expert, Bob Mahoney Excavating Inc. offers high quality land clearing, grading and other construction site preparation services in various areas of Northern Illinois and Southern Wisconsin, including Burlington, Kenosha County, Lake County, Walworth County, and more. Call us at (847) 489-3153 or get in touch with us online for further information.