Saturday, May 1, 2010

Tommy & Lefebvre Reconstruction: Part 6

In the last post of the Series on T&L demolition and recontruction, I covered the emptying out of the site.

In today's double-long weekend edition, we watch the beginning of the build.

The permit to build was approved by City Council on July 8th, and construction was well underway later that month. Here they've removed the sand infill, and they've marked off the South wall.

By mid August, they had removed the former foundation walls and had begun forming the new ones along Bank Street. The orange things on the right are more forms, with the wall side lying flat on the ground.

The next morning, a crane was lifting the forms out of the way. During parts of this construction, McLeod had to be blocked off, so it was coverted to two-way traffic, hence the two conflicting one-way signs at the bottom right of the shot.

The rest of the foundation wall would require driving piles to hold back the ground. This bed of gravel was laid inside the former foundation wall to give the pile driver something to sit on as it does its work.

There's the pile driver there. Since the basement is only one storey, they didn't need a particularly tall one. Bank Street is a bit more dug up than in the similar shot back in June.

Here are the workers working with the pile driver. You can make out the grey tower of Centretown United Church (formerly McLeod-Stewarton United Church) in the background.

At the back corner of the lot is this somewhat inexplicable grove of trees, hidden from nearly all view. Looks like there's a bike rack there. I assume it's for the neighbouring condo building.

Back on the site, forms are going in for the footings of the basement floor. These two photos from mid-September form a virtual panorama. I'll leave it to your imagination to stitch them together, as my digital attempts didn't turn out too well. In the second photo, they're putting up rebar against the blue marks on the far wall.

Looking back in the opposite direction, we see some of the foundation blocks have already been poured. At the far end, there's a mound of asphalt-covered dirt, which will eventually return to its former use as the parking lot.

On top of that mound is the Site Office.

The bases for the foundation walls along McLeod are also getting together, with yellow braces holding the forms in place.

About a week later, the outer walls had been assembled and the inner wall bordering on the parking lot was going up.

There it is finished, as well as a shorter wall sticking in, likely for a stairway from the basement.

The corner of the wall is flattened back for the front entrance.

With the perimeter walls built, these rebar prairie dogs will become the columns that hold up the floor of the building.

When you look at them at some angles, as here in mid-October 2009, they look entirely random.

But a pattern becomes apparent on closer inspection. Here they've filled in the base to pour the basement floor, and are also readying to install the forms for the ground floor.

Just half a month later, the forms were laid for the ground floor, and heaps of rebar installed to hold it together.

Rather impressive, when you consider the hodgepodge of buildings that used to occupy the site.

Just a few days later, the ground floor was done and the forms removed. Bank Street's reconstruction was more or less done, save for finishing touches like the sidewalk being poured.

In the next post, we go from the ground up. See you in two three days.

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