California Department of Transportation

Cellular Confinement System (Nonstandard)

Cellular Confinements

Cellular Confinement

What is This Treatment?

This treatment is composed of a geotextile material that forms cells that can be fastened to the slope with anchor pins. Once fastened in place, these cells can be backfilled with Local Topsoil and vegetated. As these cells typically run between 4" - 8" inches deep, this approach provides a greater soil volume than traditional hydroseeding, allowing for a more successful establishment of long-term, sustainable vegetation.

When to Use This Treatment?

  • Cut slopes that are 1.5:1 (H:V) and flatter.
  • To use this product on slopes steeper than 2:1 (H:V) a Geotechnical Design Report should be prepared by the Division of Engineering Services (DES) Geotechnical Design Unit. In addition, a preliminary evaluation may be required by DES Geotechnical Design.
  • Use of this product should be coordinated with the Division of Engineering Services (DES) Geotechnical Design Unit.
  • To use Cellular Confinement in a stream or channel below the 100-year base flood elevation will be determined by the responsible charge Engineer. Planting or incorporation of seed proposed by the Landscape Architect in conjunction with the Cellular Confinement will be evaluated by the responsible charge Engineer to verify hydraulic impacts of mature vegetation.

Cellular COnfinement Detail


  • Provides immediate slope reinforcement from unrooted brush cuttings and horizontal geosynthetics. As roots develop, improves slope stability and shear resistance by creating a rooting matrix.
  • Creates a vegetative filter.
  • Increases infiltration on dry sites.
  • Provides for vegetation establishment, cover, and natural recruitment.


  • Unsuitable for rocky slopes, needs soil for fastening.
  • Must have solid footing.


  • Specifications and details are under development.

Consider Using With:

To effectively treat sites with poor soils (compacted, sterile or poorly draining), consider combining this treatment with:

Plans and Details:

  • No standard plans or details currently available.

Estimate Information:

  • Cellular Confinement System prices vary but typically run about $45,000 - 80,000/acre.
  • No standard BEES code.


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