News & Events

Novella | Building a Foundation

Chapter 3

Things started off in high gear at Novella after the holidays, and impressive strides have since been made. On any given day the site is bustling with bodies, plugging away. As I type, a slew of tradesmen including formwork & rebar contractors, electricians and plumbers (to name a few), are busy at work preparing the suspended slab.

But wait, when I last left you, the crane had just arrived. We had a big hole, perimeter walls, a lot of dirt and ya, did I mention a big hole? Much has changed since then… let’s rewind and I’ll walk you through it.

The arrival of the crane was a game changer for us. It allowed us to lift/move heavy materials to and from the site. With this additional muscle mass our efficiencies were increased tenfold and we were able to focus our attention on building up. The first step was to cover the exterior perimeter walls with drainage mats and damp-proofing. The black material that you see in the photos above is the drainage mat, the brown-ish spray-on material is the damp-proofing. As you might have guessed, these were installed to protect the parkade walls from possible water ingress. From there, vertical reinforcing bars or ‘rebar’ was installed to create the structure of the wall. Concrete was then “shot” onto the wall with a hose and finished off with a nice smooth finish.

Meanwhile, elsewhere on site, underground plumbing was taking shape. This involved laying drain tile, sumps and a plumbing system that would collect rain/underground water and feed it into the city storm sewer. Once in place, the plumbing was then covered with crushed gravel and a poly vapour barrier for added protection. Add 32,000 lineal feet of rebar to the mix and we had ourselves a slab on grade that was ready for concrete.

Next up was formwork, which makes use of large wooden forms to shape the walls, ceilings and columns of a structure. The forms are installed as per the architectural & structural designs and secured in place with shoring (think: vertical metal supports). Where required, plumbing cans are strategically placed to create voids meant to house future plumbing/pipes. Rebar as thick as 1-7/16” in diameter in some spots (think: elevator shaft) is then laid in varying sequences to ensure that adequate structural support is provided. Once in place electrical conduit is weaved through the rebar, which provides a future path for the electrician to pull all electrical wires needed to service the building. Concrete is then poured or shot (depending on the task), smoothed over and left to set.

To date we have poured 2125 cubic meters or 210 full truckloads of concrete and have successfully checked level 2 of the parkade off of our to-do list. Headway has been made on the suspended slab front (we’ve pour almost all of it) and now that momentum is on our side, we expect the process to continue swimmingly as we make our way up to the penthouse level.

In other news… I am proud to announce that we are now fully sold-out at Novella and are thrilled to welcome the latest (and final) addition to the Novella family. Welcome Lillian!!



Katelyn Hollenbeck

Katelyn is the Development Manager at Springbank Properties. With degrees in finance and economics under her belt, she made the move out west in search of clearer waters, bigger mountains and to pursue her passion for real estate. She is an avid mountain biker, fervent foody and oversees all things related to this novella.