FOUNDATIONS

Starting with a solid foundation

 

A well-designed building begins with a good foundation.  The foundation of a building is extremely important in the performance and lifespan of the building, and plays an integral role in protecting the building from moisture, keeping out insects & rodents, maximizing energy efficiency, and of course, anchoring the building to the ground to support gravity and imposed loads.  Understandably, this is an area that home-owners and builders prefer to stick with proven methods, which, in most North American homes, means using vast amounts of concrete, as well as creating useble basement living spaces.  Unfortunately, concrete is a not a very sustainable material, as its production requires high amounts of energy and is one of the world’s leading sources of greenhouse gas emissions.   Plus, creating a conditioned, sub-grade living space almost always required several layers of petrochemical products to keep it dry.  With rises in energy costs, concrete may not be the cheap, obvious answer for long.  The challenge with more sustainable foundation options in creating useable basement living spaces, which has become a staple in North American homes.  But if we can consider the possibility of forgoing a basement for a sustainable grade-based foundation, there could be considerable cost savings that could lower the cost of the entire project or be used toward other sustainable features in the building.  Learn more about different foundation options:

CONCRETE

LIGHT WEIGHT CONCRETE

INSULATED CONCRETE FORMS

RAMMED EARTH

PIER / PIN FOUNDATIONS

 

RUBBLE TRENCH FOUNDATIONS 

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