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    • Ready for Lumber

      January 29, 2021

      In St. Ives, we’re ready to start framing what will be a stunning lakefront home.

      Below are a couple of photos that show the finished foundation, which we’ve completed using ICF blocks. These interlocking polystyrene blocks first act as forms to hold concrete until it cures, and then remain in place to provide a higher degree of energy efficiency than a standard foundation. In addition to efficiency, there’s also a body of evidence to suggest ICF walls are stronger because the blocks contribute to better and more stable curing of concrete.

      In the top photo, you can also see what is now our preferred method of moisture or damp proofing. In the past, damp proofing of foundations has been done with tar spray. This is still used today, but we believe the dimple design foundation wrap provides a better and more reliable solution. This product was first developed in Europe and has been increasingly used in Canada and the USA since the 1980s. Foundation wrap is a plastic membrane that is wrapped around the foundation walls, from the perimeter drains up to the expected finish grade. The dimple design of the wrap creates an air gap between the membrane and foundation wall so moisture is never in contact with the poured concrete wall. Any water in the soil will be funnelled to the perimeter drains, leaving the foundation walls dry. The material is flexible and durable, non-toxic, resistant to soil acidity and easy to install--even in cold weather. Shifting and settlement cracks will not affect the membrane.

      Meanwhile, on the bottom photo, you can clearly see the ICF blocks remaining in place on the inside of the foundation wall, which add considerably to the home’s energy efficiency.

      Next up: a framing update in the weeks ahead.