Thursday, January 31, 2013

I Can See Clearly Now, the Haze is Gone

The sun came out and melted about a foot of snow.  That's a lot of melting.  I mentioned a few days ago that the Daily Herald published an article about the finished design of the temple.  In studying that, I am wondering if the basement will need to be deeper.  I'll just keep watching.
It's fun to see the tabernacle on stilts.  I'll never get tired of this.  Work on bracing the piers continues.
What a beautiful building this is! 
I noticed some snowmelt under the northeast corner.
I zoomed in for a closer look.  I doubt this is temple standard quality for a font.
Machines can move freely underneath the tabernacle because the piles of dirt are out.
The dirt is, once more, being removed from the north lot.
Notice that one of the track hoes was quite comfortable as King of the Hill.
Something is happening in the northwest corner.  Looks like the retaining wall sprang a leak.
It was a beautiful day to be working at the site, compared to earlier this week.  Notice at the right side of the photo someone's red jacket is hanging on the retaining wall.  I took my coat off, too.  
It looked like something serious was happening on the south side.  I zoomed in to see what they were doing.  I don't think the machine is a drill rig, but I know enough to notice the supports behind the rear tires.  This machine was lifting something up and down.
I think they are testing the slurry curtain.
At first I thought these pipes were part of a fence on the south lot near the buried slurry curtain, but now I'm wondering if this is related to the testing.  Hopefully my engineering family members will weigh in soon.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Snowy Day at the Temple

It was 18 degrees and snowing when I arrived at the site this morning.  It was easy to see from the northeast corner that the piers have now all been exposed.
I could see completely under the temple from the southeast corner.  
The machines were just waking up.  A little track hoe and front end loader were digging and moving dirt in the northeast corner.
A welder was working on the supports for the piers.  That might be a nice job on a day like today.
Work was just starting with the drill rig.  I will watch this -- I can't speculate yet.
A thick blanket of snow covered everything.  

Monday, January 28, 2013

Monday Night at the Temple

I arrived at the temple site tonight just after sunset, not the best of timing.
It was very quiet; I'm sure all the machinery operators were home having family home evening.
I stayed long enough to take a few pictures, because while I love watching the reconstruction of this building, I was also very excited about seeing the mountains.  Because we haven't seen them for a few weeks.
I could say that the south lot might be fully excavated, or I could say that our mountains are truly beautiful.
You might be noticing the new fence on the west side.  It's on top of the trench dug last week.
You might also notice that the piers are almost all exposed.  An article from the Daily Herald shows some of the plans for the new temple, including a two level basement.
This northwest corner had not been excavated last week.
I am certain that all the piers will soon be reinforced.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Detective Work at the Temple

I arrived at the temple site this morning just as the trencher was driving out of the south pit.
Look how nice and clean he is -- clearly he has just taken a shower. It would have been a nice shower, too, as it warmed up to 42 degrees today.
I did not go to the site yesterday, as there were 54 accidents in Provo alone due to icy roads.
But if the trencher took a shower this morning, then he worked yesterday.  What did he do?
The south lot was all a jumble, trucks everywhere.  There's even a drill rig on the site.
I could not see any new trenches, but based on what I saw Wednesday, they clean up fast afterward.
When I got to the west side, I saw a lot of clutter.  I was seeing this as another clue, because usually the site is pristine.  Well, for a construction site.  I had to look for a few minutes before I saw that piles have been driven into the shallow trench which was dug on Wednesday.  Look closely -- that trench is a horizontal line across middle of this photo.
The pile driver was parked quietly in a corner of the north lot.
He deserves a rest, because clearly he worked hard.
On Wednesday I only saw the Bentonite being dumped into the trench, but today the west side was filled with empty cement bags.
This slag in the north lot is left over from a new trench made by the trencher.  I couldn't see that there was room to drive the trencher along the west side.  I suspect that secondary trenches were built on the north and south sides.  Clearly the trencher has been working between this morning and Wednesday and he put those trenches somewhere...
The north lot has a lot of new dirt piles, too.  And look -- the drill rig drove himself over here!  I watched the front-end loader for quite awhile.  He was taking dirt from underneath the tabernacle and making a nice road on the west side, patting it down gently after each load.  
The pump which has been working with the trencher was pulled up the south slope.  There, he took his turn in the showers.  I'm thinking the pump and the trencher were being cleaned up before returning home.
This track hoe in the south lot was moving dirt around to fill in an enormous wet place.  I bet this is where the trencher got his shower.  On the edge of the left side of this picture is a small machine which aided and abetted the shower.
These machines on the north lot were very busy.  The track hoe, loading dark dirt which I suspect was from another trench, stayed out of the way of the front-end loader, whose bucket was actually being filled by a track hoe inside the tabernacle. 
From my vantage point, I could see activity on three sides of the tabernacle, and underneath, too.
Welders are working to secure the piers together.
You've noticed the orange plastic sheeting go up on the outside, and it's being installed on the inside, too.  This will protect the workers from any stray bricks. 
And underneath, it looked like a party was going on!  Trucks moving in and out, workmen coming and going, machinery being dragged around -- and more and more piers are being exposed.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Trenching Almost Complete, Maybe

The sun came out just for a few minutes this afternoon as I arrived at the site.  The trencher is now on the south side, and you can see the trench it has dug, similar to the one it dug yesterday on the north.  Notice the empty bags of cement.
I checked the north lot to see that trench, and if I hadn't watched the trencher work, I wouldn't know what had happened.  The slag, which is my word, has been totally scraped off, leaving no trace above ground of the massive work which happened here yesterday.  My engineer husband who looked at the pictures when I got home, speculated that the pile of dirt at the end of the trench is what was scraped up.
This small track hoe had just finished digging a trench on the west side.  Notice the hose  in the corner.
As soon as the trench was completed, this lift began dumping Bentonite into the trench.  You can see that the trench isn't very deep -- the workman is standing in the trench.  I was concerned that he was breathing in the Bentonite, but my husband says it's a clay that many people believe has health benefits.   I wondered why the trench on the west side was only three feet deep, while the trench on the north and south sides is probably twenty feet deep.  We speculated that the reason has something to do with the underground parking lot which will be built on the west side.  Notice the hose from the pump heading north.  If you look carefully, you can see it snaking around along the south side of the tabernacle.
As soon as the Bentonite was dropped in the trench, the little front end loader covered the trench.
I took this broad picture to show the hose.  It snakes from the pump just barely seen on the right hand side, up and around the west trench, and then back along the south side to the trencher.  I noticed that all the lights which had been at the site for two days were gone.  I am wondering if the trencher worked all night long Tuesday to dig a deep slurry curtain on the east side.  The position of the hose is a clue that indicates this might have happened.  Only recently was it disconnected from the trencher as it completed its work on the east side, and then walked back around the tabernacle and reconnected to the trencher.
The trencher and the hose and the new trench can been seen in this picture.  The trencher was taking a little break while I was at the site.  
This track hoe was repairing the east side after the trencher crossed it, likely leaving a big mess.  I think this area is too narrow for a slurry curtain to have been dug.
Everyone stays busy at the site.  There is no lollygagging.
I wonder if one of the workmen choreographs the track hoes.
This new trench will keep the basement of the new temple dry.