Watershed Materials - Technology for New Concrete Blocks
The block with a smaller carbon footprint.

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Blog updates by Watershed Materials. Developments for sustainable new concrete block technology funded by the National Science Foundation.

Watershed One Demonstration House - Progress Report - Week Ten

Work continued on both buildings last week. We nailed together the roof panels and bolted the blocking into the tabs on the kitchen/family room, and the masons laid four and a half feet of  block walls on the bedroom wings.  We were ready for an inspection and pour on Friday morning, but a light rain was enough to discourage the building inspector from climbing the scaffolding to give us a sign off.  We'll pour on Monday and then try to lay the final four and a half feet by Friday.  Remember, the block pattern on the upper floors is quite a bit different than on the lower floors.  Above we're using a course of four inch high blocks, then two courses of six, then another single four.  Plus, we have a pattern of rotating a third of the six inch blocks.  All of this adds to production time, coupled with the extra time needed to get the blocks and mortar up to the scaffolds.  One more week and I'll be able to generate an accurate cost per square foot number so we can see how it compares to other wall systems.

I've put a few photos together for this post:  the first shows us setting the first of the pan deck panels on the bedroom walls while the masons continue to lay block.  The second photo is the roof on volume A, with garage door openings and the four floor to ceiling windows in the family room.  In the third photo Juliet surveys her elevation drawings to make sure the masons are getting the windows in the right places, and the final shot was taken this morning.  You can see the blocks laid halfway up the second floor bedroom walls with the kitchen roof in the background.