One of our readers requested information on how to build on sloped terrain. They want to minimize excavation work. The drawing above shows how to build an earthbag foundation in ‘steps’. The basic process involves: 1. determine the slope of the land: change in elevation (‘rise’) over horizontal distance (run), expressed as a fraction (example: 5’/20’), or express as a percentage (example: 10% slope); 2. draw the slope to scale (example: 1 square on the graph paper = 1 foot); 3. draw the foundation in steps to best fit your house design. Note: the drawing above shows the basic idea. You’ll have to adjust the size of the foundation steps for your house. The floor can be one or more levels. Consider using piers or poles for real steep slopes.