It is said that the roots of a tree run deep as the trunk grows tall. While that’s not quite true of a building’s foundation … it can feel pretty darn close.

The highest foundation wall for phase 1 of Building Hope is 38 feet high – that’s roughly as tall as six University of Washington men’s basketball players standing on each others shoulders!

Formwork – some made of metal and some of wood – is used to shape and support the foundation’s walls. These forms come in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be adjusted and reused for different types of foundation walls.

The concrete reaches about 97% of its strength in about 28 days. The remaining 3% is reached during the lifetime of the structure! Work on concrete’s surface can begin a day or two after it was placed, even though it hasn’t reached full strength.

So far, the construction crew has poured 2,328 cubic yards of concrete, or about 3,414 tons – which weighs, if you can imagine, about as much as 1,700 Volvo station wagons.

By the time the job is done, we expect to pour about 12,000 cubic yards. This will include foundations, footings and walls, as well as the slab on grade for the basement, the decks of each floor, and the curbs and gutters, sidewalks, and drive and parking areas.

In addition, about 500 tons of reinforcing bar (rebar) will be placed to provide tensional strength for the concrete. The rebar is what holds together the concrete when small cracks naturally develop.