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13. Straw Bale Building and the Foundation By Andrew Morrison Slab and Basement Foundations There are many different options for foundations. Concrete stem walls and footings, piers, monolithic concrete slabs, rubble trench with concrete bond beam, and sand bag and rip-rap stacks are all possibilities. In general, foundation systems contain one or more of the following: footings, piers, stem walls, and/or slabs.

These foundation walls are constructed with ICFs (Insulated Concrete Forms). They are the sensible, cost-effective alternative to standard walls of wood frame and cinder block. These forms pop out of the box as you see them here; you only have to fasten each section together in the configuration indicated by the blueprint, insert rebar, and fill the forms with concrete. The obvious advantage is that an ICF foundation can be built in a quarter of the time it takes to build a traditional wood…

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