Created by on Oct 09, 2019

A Chicago townhouse from the 1980s without a basement is space challenged, and a covered back-yard pool limits what can be done between the house and garage. Demolishing the garage, and digging out a high-ceilinged space below it is the only way to meet the client’s goals.  Adding this recreational space comes with unique construction requirements. Difficulties include the weak bearing capacity of the soil in this area, the proximity of neighboring structures, and low power lines which guard the entry to the site. 

The final product, once the underground recreational space is achieved, will create an elegant roof deck and completely new personal size natatorium. 

Steel shoring, Liquid applied waterproofing, a matt foundation slab and a dead-pour are the order of the day on this tight Chicago lot with soupy soil in video #1 in a series on this unique project. 



BBA design leader Gary Beyerl and fellow principal Tim Kress designed the scheme, and worked with Hutter Trankina Engineering and Bigane Construction to orchestrate this dance of steel and concrete.