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The maximum pile design stresses specified in building codes exert a strong influence on the design of pile foundations and have a major impact on the efficiency of utilization of pile materials. This paper presents an overview of code requirements in the United States, with emphasis on model codes and the recommendations of technical societies and trade organizations, but including a sampling of requirements in local codes. This is followed by a discussion of the current trend toward higher design stresses, potential problems resulting from this trend, and means by which codes can be structured so as to minimize or avoid these problems.
building codes, pile foundations, steel piles, concrete piles, wooden piles
Geotechnical consultant, Champaign, Illinois