Construction Update: Winter Park Custom Home

We are excited to share that construction has started for our Winter Park Custom Home Project!

winter park custom home

Rendering at front facade and garage


Here is a rendering of our architectural design of the home for reference – If you would like to find out more about our work on this project, please go to our project portfolio page here.

 Construction Update – July & August


In early July 2015, our contractor cleared the site and began excavation for the footings.  The structural system for this house is a combination of 8” CMU (concrete masonry units) walls and steel columns and beams. We needed to install two different kinds of footings – at the CMU walls, the footings run in a continuous line under the entire length of the wall. At the columns, there is a square or rectangular footing centered underneath the column.  Once excavation was completed, the rebar (reinforcing bars) was installed, and the concrete was poured for all the wall footings first, followed by the column footings.

Click on the photos to enlarge:


By mid-July, we were ready to install the underground utility lines and the pipe stub-ups into the house.  While the utilities went in, the CMU walls started to go vertical.  The first three CMU courses were installed on all the CMU walls. This portion of the wall is called a stem wall – the part of the CMU wall that connects the footing to the ground level floor slab.


The next step in construction was to pour the main floor slab for the house. Our project used a 4″ cast-in-place concrete slab on grade.  Once this was installed, the CMU walls continued their way up to the second floor.  As the walls went up, the contractor laid out all the door and window openings in the CMU.

Once the slab was poured and the walls went vertical, we can really start to see the design taking shape.


By mid-August, all the CMU walls had made it up to the height of the second floor.  In many locations around the building, our structural system required tie beams to support the wood floor trusses that will create the second floor of the house.  This project also required a few tie columns to be poured within the CMU walls.  These were needed where the main steel beams for the second floor would be supported by a CMU wall instead of a steel column.


One of the main architectural features in our design is the ‘Blade Wall’.  This wall is nearly 30′ tall and spans from the front of the house to the back of the house.  The next step in construction was to take the CMU walls that are the main structural support for the blade wall up to their full height and pour the tie beams at the top.  These walls will support a 50′ long steel girder truss that will be installed in the coming weeks.


By the end of August, the steel columns and beams were installed throughout the ground level of the house.  However, this effort could not be completed because of one unique area of the house.  Usually, the beams for the second floor are supported by columns below, which are supported by the footings in the ground.  In one location in the house, we have a ‘hanging column’.  In this spot, the beams for the second floor are supported by column that is hung from the blade wall girder truss. This is not something you see in every house design!  So, the last beams and the ‘hanging column’ could not be installed until the blade wall girder truss went in. That will be in our next update!



The 50’ long Blade Wall truss will be installed and the second floor wood trusses will start to go in.  Stay Tuned!