Temporary or Permanent
This method of anchoring your foundation is known for its cost-effectiveness and ease of installation. Typically used for smaller temporary fabric buildings, Hogan stakes are made from high- tensile steel for added strength and will not bend when going into hard surfaces. Compared to other foundation options featured on this list, Hogan stakes require minimal effort when it comes to installation and can be removed without difficulty when it comes time for the fabric structure to be moved. A basic sledgehammer or jackhammer can be used to drive the stakes into the ground which saves both time and money. In most cases, each base plate requires two stakes.
Commonly used for smaller temporary fabric structures, Duckbill earth Anchors are a popular choice when securing a building to the ground. These aluminum alloy anchors can be driven into the ground using either hand tools or small portable power equipment. No digging or cement is required! After the Duckbill anchors have been hammered into the ground, pulling upward on the anchor rotates it into a perpendicular position allowing it to “lock” in undisturbed soil. Duckbill anchors offer a cost-effective, lightweight, and environmentally friendly foundation system for your fabric building.
Wood post mounts are a popular foundation choice for fabric buildings in the agricultural industry. Used for various applications from riding arenas to hay storage structures, wooden posts offer a quick and straightforward install with minimal equipment required. Most wooden posts used for anchoring fabric structures are treated and placed 4 to 6 feet into the ground with 4 to 6 feet left above ground. A mix of concrete and gravel is poured into the post hole and packed around the post to secure it into place. This foundation type is usually used for structures that will be up for longer periods of time.
This reliable and sturdy foundation option is popular for both medium and large fabric structures. Like a screw being twisted into a wall, helical piles are driven into the soil with hydraulic drive motors, skid-steers, auger trucks, or excavators. The installation process is relatively straightforward and quick as a helical pile can be drilled at a rate of 10 feet every five minutes. The size and depth of the screw anchor depends on factors such as building size, soil conditions, location wind loads, etc. Even in poor soil conditions, helical piles are an effective foundation option because of how deep they can be driven into the ground. Using screw piles as a foundation option is cost effective option with minimal environmental impact that works well for both permanent and temporary fabric buildings.
Interlocking concrete blocks are becoming a very popular choice for fabric building projects in a variety of industries such as mining, oil and gas, bulk storage, construction, and waste management. Usually used for small to medium sized structures, concrete blocks offer a durable and low maintenance foundation option that requires heavy lifting equipment for installation. This foundation choice is one of the most sustainable options as no drilling or ground disturbance is required. Once installed, concrete lego blocks can be picked up and relocated without a trace making them a perfect choice for temporary fabric building projects. That being said, their long-lasting properties allow them to be used for permanent projects too!
If you work in the oil and gas, petrochemical, or construction industry, you have most likely seen this type of foundation used on project work sites. Constructed with a rigid combination of steel and wood, rig mats are easily installed and require minimal resources to set up on site. Rig mats are placed on top of the ground which make them a perfect foundation option for locations that are environmentally sensitive and have rough or muddy terrain. Fabric buildings are typically fastened to rig mats with ballast blocks or anchors and are used more as temporary buildings rather than permanent structures. Rig mats can be a great foundation option for small, medium or large fabric buildings.
Using sea-can containers as a foundation for your fabric building is not only eco-friendly option but also provides many other benefits that help you get the most out of your structure. Typically used for small to medium fabric buildings, sea-can containers give your structure an extra 8-1/2′ of additional clearance and also provide extra dry storage space that is fully sealed from outside elements and rodents. Containers usually need heavier machinery to install but require no digging or ground disturbance making them a great foundation solution for both permanent and temporary fabric buildings.
For situations where it might be challenging to build a traditional foundation for your fabric building, poured in place concrete piers offer a very sturdy and sound foundation option. Concrete piers use vertical pillars or piles to transfer the building load to the soil. Beams are then built on top of these columns and the fabric structure is secured to the top of the beams. This is a great foundation solution where the ground is unstable such as areas with trees or complex root systems. Keep in mind that concrete piers are for permanent structures as they require a large amount of labor and resources to install.
Another permanent foundation option for your fabric building is a concrete grade beam. The grade beam is a concrete member used to form a horizontal connection between a pile cap and footing where the load from the structure is ultimately transferred to the soil. This foundation offers a strong and sturdy solution that keeps your fabric building closer to ground level. Since this foundation option requires concrete to be poured, the project site must be completely level. A concrete grade beam is usually used for medium or large fabric buildings and requires more labor and resources to install.