Geotechnical Engineering

NOVA’s dynamic and highly educated local team of Masters and Ph.D. level Geotechnical Engineers, Geologists and Geological Professionals take a client-driven approach to deliver solutions while calling on vast collective experience and knowledge of the geological conditions in the areas we serve. Enlist our team of responsive Geotechnical rock stars as the foundation of your building project.


  • Preliminary Site Review
  • Site Reconnaissance and Explorations Including Drilling Borings and Cone Penetrometer Tests (CPTs)
  • Subsurface Exploration
  • Geologic Hazard Investigation
  • Settlement/Heave Analysis and Monitoring
  • Liquefaction Analysis
  • Bearing Capacity Analysis
  • Foundation Analysis & Design
  • Slope Stability Analysis and Repair Recommendations
  • Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering
  • Groundwater, Seepage Identification, and Analysis
  • Retaining and Flood Wall Analysis
  • Earthwork and Grading Specification Preparation
  • Soil and Rock Mechanics
  • Embankment and Excavation Slope Stability Evaluations
  • Excavation, Shoring, and Dewatering Recommendations
  • Soil Improvement/Remediation Recommendations
  • Seismic Fault Investigations
  • Anchor Load Tests
  • Evaluation of Soil Bearing Capacity
  • Pile Driveability and Capacity Analyses
  • Site Grading Specifications
  • Probabilistic and Deterministic Seismic Hazard Evaluations
  • Liquefaction Potential Studies
  • Selection of Seismic Design Parameters
  • Stability Analyses of Reinforced Embankments or Dikes
  • Stability Analyses of Slopes, Channels and Excavations
  • Pile Lateral and Axial Capacity Curves
  • Cantilevered, Anchored, and Braced Sheet Pile Analyses


  • Geotechnical Performance Testing
  • Geotechnical Monitoring
  • Compaction Testing
  • Utility Trench Backfill
  • Third-Party Evaluation
  • On-Site Geotechnical Remediation
  • Expert Testimony Litigation Support
  • Planning
  • Grading Observation
  • Fill Evaluation and Selection
  • Groundwater Mitigation and Control
  • Field Observation of Geotechnical Elements
  • Crosshole Sonic Logging


Nova utilizes in-house geotechnical soils testing laboratory facilities to conduct a variety of tests on soils and other building materials. Our laboratories are equipped with state-of-the-art equipment to perform tests in accordance with the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) and other applicable standards. Our service capabilities in geotechnical laboratory testing include the following tests:

  • Hydrometer Analyses
  • Sand Equivalent
  • Consolidation/Collapse
  • R-Value
  • California Bearing Ratio (CBR)
  • Consolidation Testing
  • Direct Shear Testing
  • Moisture Content
  • Triaxial Shear Strength Testing (CD, CU, UU)
  • Maximum Density & Optimum Moisture Content
  • Specific Gravity
  • Atterberg Limits
  • Sieve Analysis


Avenue 55 Development, Silver Springs, NV

NOVA Geotechnical & Inspection Services provided geotechnical engineering for the 40-acre land development. The proposed development will include three separate warehouses totaling approximately 208,000 to 217,000 square feet. The structures will be of concrete tilt-up construction with concrete slab-on-grade floors. Cuts and fills were less than one foot.

Main & Commerce One Way Couplet

NOVA provided geotechnical engineering services for the proposed rehabilitation and reconfiguration of Main Street from Las Vegas Boulevard to Bonanza Road, Commerce Street from Oakey Boulevard to Main Street, and Oakey Boulevard from Main Street to Commerce Street, all for one-way traffic. The roadway alignments are to be widened requiring new pavement sections in those areas and existing pavements were evaluated for replacement and/or overlay.

Las Vegas Wash Middle Branch

The drainage alignment to be improved consisted of 7,550 feet along Elkhorn Road and 9,500 feet along Decatur Boulevard. Based on the provided construction plan and profile drawings, a double 13 foot by 9-foot reinforced box culvert (RBC) were installed along Elkhorn Road from Torrey Pines Boulevard to Decatur Boulevard. From Elkhorn Road to Whispering Sands Drive the improvements installed along Decatur Boulevard consisted of 1,300 feet of 96-inch diameter reinforced concrete pipe (RCP) and 2,650 feet of 72-inch diameter RCP. The installation of the RBC and RCP will require the removal and/or relocation of numerous underground utilities, including, but not limited to waterlines and sanitary sewers.

The Downtown Grand

The Downtown Las Vegas renovation continues with the remodel of Las Vegas’ soon-to-be newest hot spot, The George. This project includes the renovation of the former Lady Luck Hotel & Casino starting with selected demolition and renovation work as well as a new skin with exterior EIFS (exterior insulation and finish system) and waterproofing systems. The hotel towers will be brought up to-do-date to the most current building codes and Breslin will install a new central plant system for the entire project. This scope not only includes the equipment setting and hook up, but also includes earthwork, concrete footings, and the concrete equipment pad, as well as coordination and installation with Southwest Gas, NV Energy, and installation of water piping, hydronic piping, associated cooling towers and installation of the mechanical equipment screening.

Carson City Landfill Monitoring & Well Siting

NOVA personnel provided a hydrogeologic evaluation of the subsurface beneath two monitoring well located downgradient of the landfill and between the Carson River and the landfill. PCE contamination was detected in the upgradient groundwater monitoring Well No. 1, but was absent in Well No.2. The purpose of our services was to attempt to explain from a geologic standpoint the reason why the PCE plume has not migrated downgradient to Well No. 2, and also to help facilitate the possible abandonment of South Monitoring Well No. 1.

900 Vermont

The project consists of a six-story building featuring 193 apartments – including 20 extremely low-income affordable units – above 19,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space and a two-level, 249-car basement parking garage.

Client: Jamison Properties, LP | Jurisdiction: City of Los Angeles | NOVA Role: Geotechnical engineer of record

Muddy River Ravine

This project consisted of improvements to the Muddy River Riverine, north and south of Cooper Street, in Overton, NV. The improvements consisted of:

  • Replacing the existing Cooper Street low-water crossing with a two-lane concrete-framed bridge over the Muddy River which would be approximately 253 feet in length and 52 feet wide and supported by deep foundations at each abutment.
  • Constructing concrete-lined open channels approximately 1,500 feet in length and ranging in width from 100 feet to 200 feet located upstream and downstream of the Cooper Street Bridge.
  • Providing 3,400 feet of channel improvements south of the Cooper Street Bridge using rip-rap and Gabion baskets to improve and stabilize the banks and channel width from approximately 200 feet to 400 feet.
  • Providing 1,200 feet of the channel improvements north of the Cooper Street Bridge through the use of Gabion baskets and Gabion mats along with rip-rap to provide a stabilized width of approximately 200 feet.
  • Providing service roads along the top of the improved channels.

Ahern Hotel

The project consisted of the construction of a 10-story hotel structure with 201 rooms and a 2-story casino attached to a 5-story parking structure on a lot size of 2.63 acres located on Las Vegas Blvd S. & E. Sahara Ave. The square footage of the hotel, casino, and parking structure together is approximately 373,000 square feet. The hotel and parking structures would be of concrete-frame construction and the casino structure would be of steel-frame construction, all with a concrete slab-on-grade lower floor and no basements

Geo Institute