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First piece in place

Photo / Frances Bonet

A crane lowers a reinforcing bar cage into a 70-foot-deep trench on the Stata Center site on July 28. The cage -- the first piece of the permanent building to go into place -- is actually the reinforcement for a concrete-filled panel (one of 66 that will eventually be installed) that will form a wall in the center's three-story underground parking garage and service center. In a construction technique widely used in the Big Dig but new to the MIT campus, the cage was temporarily supported by a slurry wall, needed to hold back the soft surrounding clay that would otherwise collapse the deep trench.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on August 9, 2000.

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