Why is it preferable to minimize the width of pipe trenches?

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From the design point of view, it is preferred to minimize the width of pipe trenches because of the following reasons:

(i) Higher cost of excavation is associated with wider pipe trenches.

(ii) The width of trench affects the loads on installed pipelines in consideration of embankment condition and wide trench condition. For minimum pipe trench width, the loads on pipelines can be reduced.


However, sufficient space has to be provided to allow for proper compaction. This is helpful to reduce the reaction at critical locations of pipelines under traffic and fill loads. Moreover, consideration should be given to accommodate temporary works for deep trenches where shoring has to be provided during construction.

This question is taken from book named – A Self Learning Manual – Mastering Different Fields of Civil Engineering Works (VC-Q-A-Method) by Vincent T. H. CHU.

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