CATS Project, Light Rail Line
Charlotte, NC 

A new parking deck at Interstate 485 and South Boulevard in Charlotte, NC provides parking for local commuters to access the south end of the present Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS) light rail line. This three-story parking deck is adjacent to a local elementary school. In order to keep the embankment level with the school yard, it was necessary to backfill behind the parking deck. To backfill against a wall of this height with ordinary soil would result in high pressures on the wall.

King Guinn and Associates of Charlotte designed a solution. By using Stalite Geotechnical backfill material the pressures on the wall were greatly reduced. Because Stalite lightweight aggregate is inert, it will never degrade or lose its strength. It is also self-draining, which keeps the moisture from accumulating behind the wall and causing more pressure to build against the wall. Crowder Construction Co., who was the contractor on the project, placed the approximate 13,000 tons of Stalite with relative ease and required minimum effort to consolidate it.


The top few feet of the backfill area was filled with topsoil and seeded with grass giving the potential to serve as part of the playground for the school next door.

Some of the other applications for Stalite Geotechnical backfill are:

  • Slope Stabilization
  • Subgrade Stabilization and Improvements
  • Gas Ventilation for Landfill
  • Thermal Stabilization
  • Landscape and Plaza Fill
  • Fill over Pipelines
  • Fill over Poor Soils
  • Fill behind Bulkheads and Retaining Walls