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Danny Chan La, Deseret Morning News
Crews begin pouring more than 7,600 cubic yards of concrete Friday on a tower that is part of City Creek Center.

The amount of concrete being poured this weekend at the corner of West Temple and South Temple could build a 4-foot-wide sidewalk from downtown Salt Lake City to American Fork or create a 4-foot-thick cover for the football field at Rice Eccles Stadium.

The quantity of rebar at the site is roughly the amount of steel needed to manufacture 285 full-size pickup trucks.

"There's a lot of material that goes into this," Grant Thomas, director of construction services for City Creek Reserve Inc., said Friday at the future site of a 32-story residential tower.

About 7 p.m., construction crews began pouring the concrete foundation for the tower — the first new building to begin rising as part of City Creek Center. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' $1.5 billion project will bring a mix to residential, retail and office space to the former Crossroads and ZCMI Center mall sites.

"This is an important milestone in the progress of City Creek Center," Thomas said.

The residential building — one of six planned for City Creek Center — will stand about 370 feet tall, he said, which is roughly 60 feet higher than the Beneficial Life Tower on the corner of South Temple and Main Street.

The tower is being built at the former site of the Inn at Temple Square. It will feature about 850 residential units, with four levels of parking below street level. In all, City Creek Center will add about 700 residences to downtown.

The continuous pour of the 150-foot by 130-foot foundation was expected to take about 15 hours, putting its estimated completion time at 10 a.m. today. The foundation will be 13 feet deep at its deepest point, Thomas said.

Two mats of steel rebar were constructed for the foundation, one at its base and the other on top, to add strength to the concrete, he said. The foundation will rest on 172 auger-cast poles, each 24 inches in diameter, that extend 72 feet below ground.

Six concrete pumping machines, more than 850 truckloads of concrete and 75 workers will be needed to complete the foundation pour in 15 hours, Thomas said.

Demolition work on the two-block area bordered by North Temple, State Street, 100 South and West Temple got under way in November 2006 and was completed in October.

Crews have been able to salvage or recycle more than 60 percent of materials from the demolition, Thomas said. Some of the reinforcing steel being used in the foundation pour this weekend came from the Key Bank tower, which was imploded in August.

The tower is expected to be completed in 2011.

E-mail: jpage@desnews.com