Usually, the concrete pour for the foundation of a building, even a skyscraper, doesn’t merit much attention. But what happened on Feb. 15–16 at the site of the soon-to-arise Wilshire Grand Hotel in Los Angeles was no ordinary construction job. In fact, it was a record-breaking event — the world’s largest continuous foundation pour.
Over the course of 20 hours, 208 trucks moved 82 million pounds of concrete from eight production plants to the construction site, where 19 pumps fed 13 hoses to pour 21,200 cubic yards’ worth of foundation. But this wasn’t just about breaking records: The hotel’s architect, A.C. Martin, said that doing the pour this way was both more efficient and better for the foundation’s structural integrity.
When the 73-story hotel is completed in 2016, its 1,100+ feet of height will make it the tallest building in the U.S. west of the Mississippi.