Monday, 13 August 2012

Laying the Foundations

So the big machinery rolled in and started drilling holes all over the site. The bad news. It just rained and rained and rained. Can't control the weather. We weren't sure how all the rain would affect the work and the progress on-site. Turns out we found out late on Friday.

Received calls from both ops manager and site supervisor explaining that the rain had really softened the soil on-site. The result was that when some of the holes were being dug (in preparation for the concrete pour to create the bored piers), they kept caving in. We were given the choice to accept  that works would need to be halted (for anywhere up to 4 weeks and dependent on the weather) until the weather cleared and the ground soil firmed so that holes could be dug effectively and the piers constructed correctly OR agree to the upgrade of 13 of the 56 bored piers to Screw Piles, apparently better because they are founded deeper than bored piers and can be installed immediately and regardless of the rain and water logged soil. I trust this to be correct as the upgrade to screw piles also comes at a (rather large) extra cost - that's unexpected expense number two. Hope there's not too many more.

We checked the site over the weekend and it does look like a mess. The ground soil is muddy and uneven and water has pooled on the surface in areas at the rear of the site. Really hard to tell how many bored piers have been effectively poured. I do wonder how they deal with the excess water and then level out the site in preparation for the slab pour. It's also hard to identify where the screw piles will be sunk and we are presently waiting for the updated engineering plan. I also wonder if we will be able to see the difference between a bored pier and a screw pile once they have been installed and sunk into the ground.

As long as the result is a foundation that is solid and effective and forms the basis of a building that will stand the test of time, we will accept the extra cost and trust that good progress can be made on-site through this week. Please, please, no more rain!

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