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Building with Tilt-Up | Project Profiles

Fossil Ridge Intermediate School

TCA Tilt-Up Project Profile - Educational Division

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The desire to create a structure that would complement the colorful sandstone hills and red soil of southern Utah was a major factor in the Washington County School District’s decision to use Tilt-Up for the construction of the Fossil Ridge Intermediate School.

Summer temperatures, which can reach 115 degrees during the daytime, caused concern over the ability to maintain a consistent color and finish from panel to panel. To circumvent this issue, the contractor obtained special permits from the city, allowing concrete pours to begin at 2 a.m. To ensure further consistency, the ready-mix producer stockpiled enough cement powder from the same source for all panels and also kept the same aggregate source throughout the project.

Entire wall elevations were poured, corner to corner, on the same day, and all panels were pumped to avoid the inconsistencies in finish that can occur when concrete is placed directly from the chute.

Because the school is located in the vicinity of the recent discovery of dinosaur tracks, two life-sized 30-foot-long dinosaur skeletons were cast into the interior concrete panels in the commons area using a polycarbonate template. These templates gave a slick, almost glass-like finish, setting the impressions off both in color and texture from the standard reveals.

The structure also features tapered concrete columns, which were cast in place using the same colored concrete used for the tilt-up panels. Exterior panels were given an anti-graffiti coating, and aluminum joint covers were placed over caulking at the interior panel-to-panel joints to prevent vandalism.

Judges noted the innovative use of polycarbonate templates in the dinosaur skeleton cast into the panels demonstrated a unique application.


Project Specifics

Project Floor Area
134,000 sq ft
(12,449 sq m)
Tallest Panel
33 ft 10 in
(10.33 m)
Largest Panel
908 sq ft
(84.4 sq m)
Heaviest Panel
81,296 lbs
(36,875 kg)

Participating TCA Members

Hughes General Contractors, Inc.Sustaining Member icon
General contractor, Tilt-Up contractor
BHB Consulting Engineers PC
Dayton Superior CorporationSustaining Member icon
Lifting hardware, Bond breaker, Form release

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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