The Garden Guide

Garden pools with concrete walls and floors

Pond Construction Guide

The diagrams (right) show three alternative design principles for relationships between the walls and floor slabs of concrete pools:

  • a suspended slab can be used when the level of the pool floor is above the existing ground level. Since the combined load of water and floor is carried by the wall, foundations must be deep and substantial
  • a floating slab allows some differential movement between wall and slab to take place without structural cracks developing. The waterproofing must accommodate this movement
  • a combined floor and foundation can only be used when the grade on which the pool is built is structurally stable. If the wall is substantial the floor slab can be thickened beneath the wall

Note these construction principles are used in conjunction with conventional detailing of reinforcement bars, waterproofing, movement joints and construction joints - see pond construction guide.

The relationship between the walls and floor slab of a concrete pool can be (1) a suspended slab (top) with the floor keyed into the wall (2) a floating slab (centre) with the foundations shared by wall and slab (3) the floor slab (bottom) doubles as the foundation for the wall