The weather has decided it will not cooperate with our construction deadline and has been trying to slow the project down, but we are pushing through. We had to take Wednesday off due to snow, but got back to it Thursday morning. A lot of things happened this week; some good, some bad, but all great learning opportunities. We have to pass a concrete inspection and a deck framing inspection, and once we do, we can finish the concrete bench and the outdoor classroom.
In anticipation of Wednesday’s predicted snow we got to the site early today. By 8:00 a.m., we had met with engineers about the deck, pulled formwork off the concrete we poured yesterday and planted four of the five trees in the grassland biome. Over the course of the day we framed the deck, poured the footer for the concrete bench, and finished both the grassland and montane biomes.
Today was one of the most productive work days we have had. The biggest thing was pouring the concrete for the deck’s foundation, but we had a few other projects going on the side. Scroll through for details.
MEANWHILE, AT OTHER PARTS OF THE SITE: Sorry for the long post; we came a long way today!
We started out this morning at Burke Park, planning on digging out the foundation for the deck and shaping the final mound. We made a lot of progress, but were forced to concede defeat an hour later with the arrival of yet another late-April storm. We headed back to the studio to do some prefabrication for the concrete benches and decks.
Eight new trees joined Burke Park today. The students in our class got to learn about how to pick a healthy tree from a tree farm and how to put them in the earth. We hand-dug and shaped each hole to be just right. The most special part of the day came right after lunch. A woman brought her late husband’s ashes to scatter at the base of a tree she had donated through Boulder’s Living Legacy program. It was an honor for our class to be able to participate. The trees were all well-mulched, and ready to absorb some moisture from the impending blizzard.
The evolution of the design, especially the deck piece, led our class to meet on site yesterday morning in some interesting foggy conditions. We are preparing to continue construction next Monday (weather permitting) with tree plantings. One woman has donated a tree in memorial of her late husband and will be meeting us to help with its planting.
The class got to spend some time in the sun this week—a welcome change from computer screens and classroom lights. We were beginning construction on our design, which meant building and shaping the grassy mounds of Memorial Grove. On Monday we had a dump truck deliver several loads to the areas that the city scraped the sod off of last week, which we then shoveled and raked into shape. This morning (Wednesday), we finished shaping the mounds and laid down seed and protective jute. The timing couldn’t have been better since we are expecting rain and snow this weekend, which will water the seeds into place and help jumpstart their germination.