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Building with Tilt-Up | Project Profiles

University Of Wisconsin Medical Foundation

TCA Tilt-Up Project Profile - Office Division

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When constructing a new 200,000-square-foot facility incorporating office space and medical records storage for the University of Wisconsin, the design/build team faced a major challenge right out of the gate: The site for the building was once a 200-foot-deep glacial lake that had slowly drained to become a soft, silty marsh.

To get around this obstacle, a total of 363 12-inch diameter pipe piles were driven an average of 160 feet deep, to carry the weight of the building. Because of this unusual setup, the weight of the tilt-up panels used couldn’t exceed the capacity of the piles. This was accommodated by maximizing window openings and reducing the amount of concrete used per insulated panel.

Because the white concrete panels—many of which stand nearly 57 feet tall—were sandblasted, great care was taken to ensure that no cracks formed in the façade. Aluminum composite panels and a glass curtain wall complement the modern aesthetics of the building’s exterior, while exposed interior panels and a reception desk made from small architectural tilt-up panels with a ground concrete top and limestone inlays carry the theme through the entire structure.


Project Specifics

Total Panels (Single Building)
150 panels
Project Wall Area
45,000 sq ft
(4,181 sq m)
Project Floor Area
200,000 sq ft
(18,580 sq m)
Project Footprint
80,000 sq ft
(7,432 sq m)
Tallest Panel
57 ft 0 in
(17.37 m)
Widest Panel
25 ft 3 in
(7.70 m)
Largest Panel
651 sq ft
(60.5 sq m)
Heaviest Panel
86,000 lbs
(39,009 kg)
Tallest Cantilever Panel
0 ft 0 in
(0.00 m)
Longest Spandrel Panel
0 ft 0 in
(0.00 m)

Participating TCA Members

Newcomb Construction Company
General contractor, Tilt-Up contractor, Project engineer
Meadow BurkeSustaining Member icon
Lifting hardware, Braces
Nox-Crete Products GroupSustaining Member icon
Bond breaker
ThermomassSustaining Member icon
Insulation system

About the TCA

Founded in 1986, the Tilt-Up Concrete Association (TCA) strives to improve the quality and acceptance of site-cast Tilt-Up construction, a method in which concrete wall panels are cast on-site and tilted into place. Tilt-Up construction is one of the fastest growing industries in the United States, combining the advantages of reasonable cost with low maintenance, durability, speed of construction and minimal capital investment. At least 10,000 buildings, enclosing more than 650 million square feet, are constructed each year using this construction method.

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