Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Construction Update - April 2012

April 28th

LF Building 5, April 28
 No crazy days this week!

LF 5-

Power is hooked up and turned on to temp outlets in the units. Gas underground is in, but 1 conduit came unglued and 1 gas line failed test. We are trying to get Bob's come back and fix it and then connect to the meters. They also need to connect to the furnace before we can have heat.

Sheetrock hangers are almost done. They think they will finish today. Inspection is scheduled for Monday and Marc will come in for that. Taping won't start until we have heat.
Final coat of paint is on the third floor in the front. We will take down the top of the scaffolding next week and continue painting if the weather allows.

Insulation ordered for the last 3 units, delivery on Wednesday.

LF 7-

We had a Thrivent group out and built a third exterior wall.

Work on framing resumed as we wrapped up insulation and air sealing in LF 5. Interior walls are done in "e" and a couple more walls were completed in other units.

Wetlands/ site-

We had a wetlands inspection and we are doing OK, but need to start weeding again.

Work next week will include; framing walls, prepping for Women Build, exterior painting, insulation, sheetrock scrapping, and wetlands weeding.

Volunteer team from
Farmers Insurance

April 21st
Thursday, again! Gas was being hooked up and they needed sand and dirt brought to fill in the trenches, while Steve was waiting for us to put the conduit in the road, we had 7 volunteers and the AmeriCorps left for training, an inspection, the Norris NRI project, and the wires installed last week were too short so we had to replace them...


Gas is hooked to 2 units and the HVAC contractor is scheduled to come back on Tuesday to hook up the other 4.

Power will be connected on or before Friday the 27th.

Habitat home-owner Ahmed and
AmeriCorps Jess paint Building 5
More exterior painting!

Insulation finished and will be inspected for our Green Building requirements on Monday.

Sheetrock will begin on Tuesday.


We trenched across the road and installed conduit for the future connection.

Ruth noticed there wasn't fire rock on the end of a wall. When they took it down not only was the fire rock missing there was no sill gasket. It was repaired and stood back up.


We cleaned all of the catch basin filters, swept the road, back filled some trenches, and fixed up some split rail fence.

In the wetlands we planted some trees and shrubs to replace dead plants.

Work next week will include; exterior painting, framing, fire rock exterior cantilevers, and site work.

April 14th
On Thursday Kristina left for Minnesota, the Norris NRI project started, Steve began digging up the street, the AmeriCorps left at lunch for a meeting, the PSE inspector came a day early, and we found out the sewer connection was under the power conduit. Whew!


Ready for gas and power connections. Power inspection on Monday (if I come in) or Tuesday. Gas should be next week? Steve tore out the street and trenched across in 2 locations and we installed conduits and back filled.

We had an OK number in 1 blower door test and a complete fail in the other. We pressurized the unit and walked around feeling for leaks. They were all coming through the attic, so we started wall insulation and resealed the attics. Insulation is 80% complete in 3 units, with mostly the garage ceilings left to do.

We got some more painting done.


Volunteers from Holy Spirit Lutheran
 church frame our Thrivent ADA unit
 We made a little progress on the Thrivent house with our regular Thrivent member and got another exterior wall built and stood. We also worked a little on "b" with overflow volunteers.

Site work-

We finally pulled the alarm wires and are ready for installation. We also built the wall props and painted the breakfast guys.

Work next week will include; insulation, wall framing, painting, and site work.

April 7th
We passed our framing inspection. first try! Saturday afternoon reached 65F and we painted.

AmeriCorps Phil leads the US Coast Guard
 team in putting the finishing touches on the
porch soffits.

Sheetrock delivered for 3 units and ceilings hung on Friday. Today we air sealed inside the attics and are ready for the practice blower door test on Tuesday. If we pass the test, insulation begins Wednesday.

The gas utility contractor came by on Thursday and says work can begin maybe the week of 17th. Steve will be coming back next week to trench for power.

Air sealing continues...

Painting and paint prep resumed after we made achieved our deadlines (and got nice weather).


We installed the stairs in "a" and raised the party walls.

Unit "b" had part of its party wall raised and the other half built.

La Fortuna Building 7, April 28th
 "e" had the interior walls finished.


Still haven't made time to do the prep work for the alarm system. Will try to get it done next week.

Passed the Soos Creek utility site inspection on Tuesday.

Work next week will include; wall framing, air sealing, painting, power trenching, insulation, alarm prep, and maybe weeding the wetlands.

Issaquah Highlands:
April 21st

This year's AmeriCorps team and Site Staff who worked hard
to complete the final two homes in the Issaquah Highlands

The site is looking good for the dedication and nearly complete. On the inside, most of the final touch ups and caulking are complete. The laminate floors were uncovered on 5B and should be ready to remove in 5A early next week. Appliances installation was completed. The biggest change has definitely been on the outside. On Tuesday top soil was put in and most of the plants were delivered. The remaining plants came from the breakfast center pieces and a few others were picked up on Thursday along with sod. Volunteers put in all mulch, sod, and plants on Friday and Saturday. Earlier in the week, all three trailers were loaded and secured for shipping.
They were towed out on Thursday and placed in Renton.
Next week we will finish the remaining punch-lists and touch ups and remove the remaining items from the storage yard. Final inspections will begin next week.
April 7th

Regular construction volunteer Ray Pedrizetti
finishing the concrete porches

We have concrete! The porches, drives and walks were poured on Saturday. Earlier in the week we focused on painting the doors and millwork. This was completed on Wednesday. Doors were reinstalled with knobs and masking was removed. On Thursday the grade for the concrete pour was finalized and rebar was installed for the porches. The water meter for 5A was installed on Friday. A good deal of site work was also done on Saturday including removing old construction fencing, dismantling the recycle dumpster and adding some additional plants to the landscaping throughout the development.
Next week we will be doing paint touch ups, wrapping the porch posts with white wood, installing appliances and start prepping for landscaping.

Patterson Park Unit D-3:
April 21st

Crews worked several days this week and finished the trim painting. Most other punch-list tasks are also complete and some of the final cleaning was going to start on Saturday. Remaining tasks include re-grouting the tile entry, re-caulking the backsplashes and plumbing fixtures as needed, a few closet door knobs and floor guides and some minor electrical repairs. Unit C-2 has been assessed and prep work for painting will start with overflow volunteers from D-3.
April 7th
 We had some good progress on the buyback at Patterson this week. The partner family has started to put in their hours. On Wednesday, primer was completed in two bedrooms and the living room and a most of the floor masking was completed. The wall painting upstairs was finished by the end of the week, including the stairwell area. Holy Cross was planning on having a group work on Saturday that would focus on finishing the downstairs stairwell and painting the bathrooms, kitchen and laundry in semi-gloss.
Next week we should be able to finish the wall painting and start doors and mill work.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Construction Update - March 2012

La Fortuna, Renton:
March 31st
Today was down to 13 volunteers signed up. By 9:15 we had 23 people signed in. With all of the homeowners, buyback families, and ABWK/NRI families earning their hours at one site after next month, we could really be hopping on Saturdays!


Contract OK'd with Bob's to finish the gas piping. PSE needs to come out and set the manifold before they can do the work. Hopefully they will come out next Wednesday and get this going.

Air sealing is progressing and is complete in the 3 units we are going to test first.

NorTech is coming out to finish up a few things, then re-test the sprinkler pipes. If everything goes well they will have inspection on Tuesday.

We will have a partial framing inspection Tuesday and a final framing inspection as soon as we can fix anything the inspector finds.

Partial sheetrock delivery is scheduled for Thursday and then they will hang the lids in 3 units and we will have a practice blower door test afterwards.


The Thrivent/ Microsoft Build has the sub- floor down and the stair landing finished. It is now caught up to "b" and will be ready for trusses with the rest of the building. The other units sat idle this week as we focused on LF5.

Work next week will include; air sealing, insulation, framing, cleaning, and prep for sheetrock.

March 24th
Exciting week. Lee and Kristina met with PSE and we ordered gas service, then Friday we passed 6 electrical inspections on the first try, plus exterior painting! We also made good progress on the Thrivent Build/ Microsoft House.


Passed electrical inspections. Ordered gas. Scheduled fire sprinkler inspection for Wednesday. Ordered insulation for 3 units, delivery Wednesday.

Nearing completion of air sealing in #5 and 6. After framing inspection we will have the ceilings hung and do a practice blower door test in those 2 units.

We got some exterior painting done during the good weather. Approaching 99% of 1st coat completed. We also worked on caulking and spackling.


In "a" we installed all of the beams and joists with a Microsoft group on Wednesday, then completed all of the rim joist, blocking, backing, and even started the stair landing on Saturday with a different Microsoft group.

We work some more in "c" and have the all exterior and party walls built.


Installed water valve monument to finish the required improvements from the Soos Creek inspection.

Work next week will include; sprinkler pipe tenting, air sealing, maybe sub- floor, exterior painting, phone and cable conduits, framing punch list, and clean up.

March 18th
We had snow 2 times last week. Brrr! We made some more progress on the Thrivent build with the Holy Cross volunteer on Saturday.


Continuing with the air sealing. We have used up to 70 tubes of caulk in a single day, so the caulk donation from Pro- Build is a blessing. We are using the DOW donated spray and rigid foams everywhere possible.

Steve has trenched around 3 entire sides of the building, extended a storm drain stub out, and installed/sanded/ backfilled 50' of gas sleeve.

A volunteer electrician didn't come through and we are scheduling a paid electrician to finish up on Tuesday. We will have them stub out the phone and cable at the back of each unit and bring the home runs around the outside in the gas trench. FPI will wire for fire alarm on Wednesday and we should be able to get an electrical inspection afterward.


The HFH Tacoma-Pierce County AmeriCorps team joined us for
a day of framing during AmeriCorps week
We built more walls with the HfHtpc Americorps and with the Newport High groups. Unit "a" is ready for floor joists, "b" sat idle, "c" and "d" are 75%, and "e" had the interior walls started.


Trying to find time to pull the wire and put up boxes for the alarm system. Need to order replacement trees before the good transplant time is gone.

Work next week will include; air sealing, framing punchlist, wall framing, floor framing, trenching, and maybe painting.

March 3rd
It is the last full week with the NCCC team. We have made good progress while they were here. There is a regular volunteer who is Thrivent and Lutheran and some Microsoft volunteers, so we made some progress on the ADA.


We did a little painting and hope for more chances soon. More trim and flashing was put on to prep some siding fields for the All Staff build next Wednesday. The siding should be completed next week, maybe even during the build.

The electrician is coming back on Tuesday to help us finish the low voltage and connect the unit panels to the meters. We should be ready for inspection late next week.

We have been working on the air sealing for weatherization for the entire week and are only part way done in a couple of units. We are learning a lot about planning ahead in the future!


AmeriCorps NCCC leader, Eddie Barnhart installing sub floor
on one of the visiting team's last days with HFHEKC

Unit "a' had all of its exterior walls and 80% of its interior walls framed during the week. We will probably work again on Wednesday, would any of the office staff qualify as Thrivent volunteers?

Unit "b" has most of the sub floor installed today.

Units "d & e" have multiple walls framed and stood and all the exterior and party wall plates cut and laid out.

Work next week will include; wall framing, siding, air sealing, maybe floor framing in "a", maybe painting, definitely paint prep (caulk and spackle), and tearing down scaffold to allow for trenching to begin the week after.

Issaquah Highlands:
March 31st
Good progress again on building 5. Al and his sons were able to complete most of the plumbing trim. The water was tested on 5B. The water meter for 5A needs to be installed but the supply to the house is connected and will be operational once the meter is in place. Most of the paint prep and masking is complete in 5A and 75% in 5B. Towel bars were installed and closet shelving is about 60%. Tile backsplash was finished in the kitchens and wood backsplash for the bathrooms was cut, stained and ready to be installed. On the exterior, the block retaining walls are about 90% complete. Cable and phone conduits were installed and the water service was hooked up. The driveways were dug out to grade.

Next week we will be focusing on completing the interior painting and rehanging the doors. Door knobs, punchlist work and the final cleaning will also begin.

March 24th
Good progress continues in Issaquah. The better weather allowed us to finishing all exterior painting that needs to be reached from scaffolding. The final tower was removed and the buildings are now ready for finish grading and for the concrete flatwork. On Saturday we started building stacked block retaining walls on the sides. The planter strip along Magnolia was also graded and is ready for landscaping and the temporary water service was dug up to allow for the permanent service to be installed to the building.
Inside most of the countertops were finished and will be fully completed on Monday. Sinks were cut in and are ready for hook up along with the rest of the plumbing trim. Al Peterson will be assisting with this starting on Tuesday. Millwork installation and paint prep also continued and is now more than 90% complete.
Next week we will continue the retaining walls, complete the paint prep and hopefully start interior trim and door painting. We will also continue removing items from our storage yard as we continue to close out the site.

March 17th
Interior finishes continue to go well. In 5A the kitchen tile was installed and most of the wood laminate flooring was completed. Countertop bases were built in both units and interior paint prep and mill work installation continued. The weather was not very cooperative this week but Marc was able to get a coat of paint on the siding over the main roof on Friday. Karice, the electrician who helped with the rough-in, came out and worked with John on Friday. They were able to complete about 75% of the lights and outlets.
Next week we will continue with interior finishes and may get some exterior work completed if we can get some better weather.

March 3rd

We had another strong week of interior finish work. On Tuesday laminate wood flooring started in 5A and about 90% was completed by Thursday. Five Interior doors were installed on Friday and baseboard and door casing was the main task on Saturday. Earlier in the week baseboard was also installed in 5B. Most is now in on the upper floors of both units. Kitchen cabinets were delivered and installed on Wednesday and Thursday along with a couple of the bathroom vanities. Tile work started in the kitchen of 5B and wood flooring was installed in the dining room. Crews worked on the millwork in both houses with caulk and wood putty to get it ready for painting.
Next week we will continue with tile, wood flooring, mill work and interior paint prep. Hopefully we can also complete the siding over the main roof and start some of our retaining walls on the exterior.
The Washington Conservation Corps AmeriCorps team
 joined us to do some finish work in Issaquah

Patterson Park Unit D-3 Buyback: 
 March 31st
Cleaning and masking has started inside the unit. Over the next couple of weeks, both sites will look for ways to provide additional help for this project.

Friday, May 18, 2012

5th Annual Women Build Week Success

           This year we wanted to make Women Build Week a bigger, more impactful event.  In the past we have celebrated the week with two building days, this year we doubled it!  We also partnered with local Renton non-profits to show the reach and impact of women working to strengthen our community.  Four days of building, 120 volunteers, and one empowering week!

           This year we set some pretty aggressive goals for our Women Build, with work ranging from framing to painting.  Over the course of four days, women volunteering for the build worked on all eleven units at our La Fortuna site.  We framed interior walls on the third story of four units, getting the whole building one step closer to putting the roof on.  On the same building, we installed plywood sheathing and structural straps on the exterior to complete our nailing requirements.  On six different units, we made excellent progress with exterior painting, and got a great start on priming the newly installed sheet rock inside.  Overall, Women Build was a great success in terms of moving our site along to the next step with a lot of momentum.

           On May 9th we kicked off the event with a welcome ceremony emceed by longtime  Habitat supporter, Habitat EKC Board Member, and Women Build sponsor Betsy Wryer.  Jahna Smith, Habitat Homeowner, and AmeriCorps member spoke about how thankful she has been for the Habitat program.  Jahna also found out that day that she has been accepted into the nursing program at Pacific Lutheran University.  Five volunteers from Women Build sponsor, Travelers Insurance, came out to build, as well as women involved with ANEW (Apprenticeship and Non-Traditional Employment for Women).  Leah, ANEW’s classroom instructor, spoke about the apprenticeship program at lunch.   

            Thursday May 10th, Women Build was in full swingwith raffle prizes and Women Build gear to win, we also had a spectacular lunch with donated cookies from Panera Bread.  Jasmine Giles, daughter of a Habitat Homeowner in the New Castle community, spoke about the impact that growing up in a Habitat home had on her life.  Jasmine is currently pursuing a nursing degree at Bellevue College.  Friday, May 11th we continued to celebrate women by hearing from Goodwill, whose career education programs allow women to take the next step in their personal professional development.  Goodwill presented a vintage hat show, featuring women’s hats from pioneer days, World War II women’s military and working women hats and 1930-60s fashions. 

            Saturday May 12th during lunch, Habitat Homeowner Marwa Zahid spoke about her work at REWA (Refugee Women’s Alliance) and her personal journey as an Iraqi refugee moving to the United States and how her opportunity to become a homeowner materialized.  A few Tilted Thunder Roller Derby Rail Birds also joined us on site.

           We recognized the end of Women Build Week by hearing from two incredible homeowners, Penelope Rux and Iulia Zavodov at the closing ceremony Saturday afternoon. Penelope shared her struggles as a single mother and commended the support and strength that Habitat volunteers gave to her and to our homeownership program. Penelope and her 16 year old son L.G. spent the day building with us. Iulia gave a charming speech about the impact that Habitat has had on her family’s life, the challenges of being a refugee and her joyous thankfulness to Habitat volunteers.  

           A big thank you to our sponsors who made this week possible: Travelers Insurance, Motor Oil Supply, Lowe’s, PCL Construction, and Betsy Weyer- Windermere Real Estate!