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The Denny Regrade in process, Seattle, Washington (1900s).[1]
Regrading for a subdivision in the Santa Monica Mountains, Los Angeles, California (1970s).

Regrading is the process of grading for raising and/or lowering the levels of land. Such a project can also be referred to as a regrade.

Regrading may be done on a small scale (as in preparation of a house site)[2] or on quite a large scale (as in major reconfiguration of the terrain of a city, such as the Denny Regrade in Seattle).[1]

Regrading is typically performed to make land more level (flatter), in which case it is sometimes called levelling.[3]) Levelling can have the consequence of making other nearby slopes steeper, and potentially unstable or prone to erosion.


Reasons for regrading include:

  • Enabling construction on lands that were previously too varied and/or steeply sloped.[2]
  • Enabling transportation along routes that were previously too varied and/or steep.[1]
  • Changing drainage patterns and rerouting surface flow.[2]
  • Improving the stability of terrain adjacent to developments.[4]


Potential problems and consequences from regrading include:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Walt Crowley, Seattle Neighborhoods: Belltown-Denny Regrade -- Thumbnail History, essay #1123, May 10, 1999. Accessed online 16 October 2007.
  2. ^ a b c d Trees and Home Construction: Minimizing the impact of construction activity on trees, University of Ohio Extension Bulletin 870-99. Accessed online 16 October 2007.
  3. ^ "Montana, McLaren Tailings", p.35 in CERCLA Imminent Hazard Mining and Mineral Processing Facilities, Office of Solid Waste, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, February 1997. Accessed online 16 October 2007.
  4. ^ Malcolm Puller, Deep Excavations: A Practical Manual, Thomas Telford (1996). ISBN 0-7277-1987-4. p. 63.
  5. ^ Barry Stone, Adjacent Property Regrading Creates Drainage Problem for Homeowner, Accessed online 16 October 2007.