Progress is going slower than planned. There's a contract dispute between the foundation sub-contractor and my GC. Apparently, the sub-contractor had bid on the original set of plans, and not the one with the revised foundation. They were notified and given the revised plans 2 weeks prior to signing the contract, so the error wasn't on our side. I hope that this messy situation will be resolved soon.
In the meantime, in order to move the project forward, my contractor hired someone to haul out 45 truckloads of dirt to make room for the foundation. The geotech didn't allow for the existing soils to be used as back-fill, so that export was a major unexpected expense. I will probably need to go to the bank to re-negotiate the foundation-portion of my loan to account for all these new expenses.
Here's where we are so far. The south retaining wall is in, but there's no drainage or back-fill on it yet:
We also have a huge hole in the ground now. Here's what it looks like from the driveway:
Here it is in comparison to the duplex:
It's kind of hard to judge scale in the picture, but that is about 8 feet deep! One good thing happened - the owner of the empty lot adjacent to mine let me use his lot as temporary dirt storage. We promised to clear it out once the foundation was completed.