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HANSEN HOME McDOWELL Large FamilyRANCH Living with

DurableFootprint Design in Decreased Energy Texas’s Tornado Alley in Charles City, Iowa

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INSIDE: CONCRETE MICROHOMES INSIDESupplement: THIS ISSUE: INDUSTRY TRENDS: 2018 & Beyond Special MONTHLY

FEATURED HOME FEATURED PROJECT: RANCH News from thePROJECT: cementMcDOWELL andHANSEN concrete industries LOW-RISE CONSTRUCTION: SAFETY LOW-RISE: NEW JERSEYBRIDGE BEACH HOUSE PLUSINDUSTRY INDUSTRYNEWS NEWS•PRODUCT PLUS •concretemonthly.com PRODUCT NEWS


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from the editor

Vol. 21, No. 4

President/Editor In Chief Gary L. Pittman, Sr. Executive Vice President of Operations Gary Pittman, Jr. 512-637-0373 garypjr@pcinews.com

When this issue publishes, the Atlantic hurricane season will have already started. This time of intensified storms hits the eastern area of the United States from June through November. In some of last year’s issues we looked at the financial aftermath of hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. We know that organizations, such as the Portland Cement Association and FLASH, the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes, are working to ensure that new buildings are built using more concrete in ways that increase their durability. You can read about the Resilient Design Guide on our website: http://concretehomesmagazine.com/ resilient-design-guide. In this issue, we learn about a New Jersey beach house built using concrete that is ready to face the 2018 hurricane season. Our cover home is built on the southern edge of “tornado alley,” in Texas. The owners chose ICFs as a “no brainer,” knowing that they needed to be protected in the event of these natural disasters. Not only does the McDowell home contain safe rooms in the event of a tornado, it enjoys the highest of design-friendly form and function for the family. Another potential societal disaster that concrete can address is that of a lack of affordable housing. In the article “Concrete Micro Homes of the Future,” we learn about how an architect is trying to provide affordable, portable, livable spaces made out of concrete. As usual in each issue, we have industry news and product news. But in this issue we take a special look at the New Product Symposium of Milwaukee Tool. Each year, Milwaukee Tool invites people from the media for hands-on demonstrations of its new product releases, and we got an up-close view of their upcoming releases for 2018.

Vanessa Salvia Managing Editor

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Concrete Homes • July/August 2018

Managing Editor Vanessa Salvia vanessa@pcinews.com Contributing Writers Chrissy Jones Jason Krankota Contributing Photographer James Law Cybertecture Art Director Lisa Gouveia lisag@pcinews.com Advertising Executive Gary Pittman, Jr. (512) 637-0373 garypjr@pcinews.com Circulation/Accounting Manager Beth Chorba (512) 637-0344 bethc@pcinews.com Web and Network Manager Joel Nosal joeln@pcinews.com

PUBLISHED BY Publications and Communications, Inc. 13552 Highway 183 N, Suite A Austin, TX 78750 phone (512) 250-9023 fax: (512) 331-3950 Concrete Homes + Low-Rise Construction (ISSN 152-5547) is published bimonthly by P ublications & Communications, LP., Gary L. ­ Pittman, President. Subscriptions are available for $22 per year, single copy price $4.95. Foreign subscriptions are available for $45 per year. Payment must accompany orders. Copyright 2018 by Publications & Communications, LP. All rights reserved. Reproduction in any form without written consent from the publisher is strictly prohibited. The technical content and opinions in this publication are those of the relevant contributors or advertisers and are not attributable to the publisher, staff, writers, sponsors, sales department or other advertisers. Postmaster: Send change of address to Circulation Dept., 13552 Highway 183 N, Suite A, Austin, TX 78750 (512) 250-9023.


contents

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16

21   5 McDOWELL RANCH 16 MILWAUKEE TOOL #NPS18 19 NEW JERSEY BEACH HOUSE

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21 CONCRETE MICROHOMES OF THE FUTURE 23 A BRIEF HISTORY OF AUTOMATED PAYMENTS OF THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY

departments 4 Events 10 Industry News 14 Product News Roundup Cover photo courtesy of NUDURA

19 Low-Rise Construction 25 Builder + Business Directory


events JULY 16-20

IASS 2018 – Creativity in Structural Design Cambridge, Massachusetts iass-2018.org

JULY 18-20

GET MORE of the latest info on concrete technology and design. FIND OUT what makes concrete homes the MOST SENSIBLE and attractive HOME BUILDING alternative.

SUBSCRIBE TODAY! for

One Year

8 201 7 Febr uary 201 Janu ary/ July/ Aug ust 7 ecem ber 201 201 7 July/ Aug ust Nov emb er/D

The International Conference on the Durability of Concrete Structures Leeds, United Kingdom engineering.leeds.ac.uk/icdcs2018

JULY 19-21

ASCC Concrete Executive Leadership Forum Park City, Utah ascconline.org

JULY 23-27

2018 PCA Education Foundation Professors’ Workshop Skokie, Illinois cement.org

JULY 31-AUGUST 3

2018 NCMA Midyear Meeting, in conjunction with the NCMA 100-Year Anniversary Celebration Chicago, Illinois ncma.org/ncma-celebrates-100years-in-2018

SEPTEMBER 19-21 Tilt Up Convention Dallas, Texas tilt-up.org

SEPTEMBER 19-21

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Concrete Show Southeast Asia Jakarta, Indonesia cssea.merebo.com

Call 1-512-637-0344 or visit our website: concretehomesmagazine.com

Send your event information to Vanessa Salvia vanessa@pcinews.com

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Concrete Homes • July/August 2018


McDOWELL RANCH DURABLE DESIGN IN TEXAS’S TORNADO ALLEY

Text by Vanessa Salvia • Photos courtesy of NUDURA

T

HE MCDOWELL RESIDENCE IN LLANO COUNTY, TEXAS, REALLY COULDN’T LOOK MORE UNLIKE THE STEREOTYPICAL VISION OF AN ICF HOME. THAT’S PARTLY WHY IT WAS THE FIRST PLACE AWARD WINNER IN THE UNLIMITED RESIDENTIAL CATEGORY OF THE 2018 ICF BUILDER AWARDS. THE HOME HAS MANY ARCHED OPENINGS AND GABLES, 70 WINDOWS AND DOORS AND IS FINISHED WITH NATURAL STONE. OF COURSE IT HELPED THAT OWNER PAT MCDOWELL WAS ALSO THE GENERAL CONTRACTOR. HE HAD A CLEAR IDEA OF WHAT KIND OF HOME HE WANTED GOING INTO THE PROJECT. “When people think of concrete homes a lot of people think of rectangles and squares,” McDowell says. “They don’t think organically. But this house has got a really amazing rhythm outside. All the ceilings are different. The walls meet at varying angles, the house has all kinds of bends and twists and turns in it. The flexibility of using ICFs is really unlimited. It’s not limited to just squares and rectangles.” McDowell and his crew used NUDURA ICF for this nearly 6,000-square-feet family home. McDowell’s family has owned ranchland in the Texas Hill Country for decades, and they sought a long-term residence on desirable property they intend to keep. “We spent a lot of effort and a lot of money on this house and we plan to keep this land in our family for many generations,” he says. “I didn’t want it to become a maintenance

nightmare 100 years from now. If somebody does decide to tear it down in the future they’re going to be using my name in vain!” he says with a laugh. ENGINEERED FOR GENERATIONS Although McDowell retired from an aerospace career, he learned about building methods and techniques at the International Builders Show events he used to attend in the Dallas/ Fort Worth area. “I read trade magazines for years to learn about the different processes, materials and techniques employed in building a home,” he says. “It’s been a hobby of ours to remodel all the homes that my wife, Louanne, and I have lived in, so when it came time to do this one we were enthusiastic about it.” Pat and Louanne, who have two adult children, knew they July/August 2018 • Concrete Homes

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would eventually build their dream home on this property and move here from the Arlington area. “We started the traditional scrapbook even before we got married and had kids,” McDowell recalls, “and it was interesting to see what we saved from 25 years ago versus what we saved in later times!” When the time came for their dream home, McDowell was so enthusiastic he wrote a 40-page design spec. He compared all the different methods, including stick built, rammed earth, straw bale, tilt-up concrete, and EPS structural insulated panels (SIPs) made with foam. “It was really easy to decide to use ICFs,” he says. “That stood out as a no-brainer.” It was a little harder to decide on which brand of ICFs, though, although NUDURA won out partially because the blocks fold flat to make shipping less costly and bulky. McDowell also liked the dovetails that locked the concrete to the form along with the wide variety of form configurations NUDURA has available. Also, McDowell says, the NUDURA support they received from regional sales manager Cameron Ware was incredible. DURABLE AND BEAUTIFUL The family’s area of Texas is at the southern end of “tornado alley,” so structural durability was very important to them. They used storm-rated doors and added an above-ground storm shelter. The master bedroom’s closet has no windows in it, so that can be used as a safe room as well. Their previous home, which was built with 2x6-inch dimensional lumber studs, was drafty and allowed outside noises to be heard inside the home. 6

Concrete Homes • July/August 2018

McDowell says this home is tight and quiet. Furthermore, even with 6,000-square-feet of interior space their electricity bill is less than $200. The main house, which has the master bedroom, master bath, study, living room, dining room, working pantry, kitchen, laundry/multipurpose room and two powder rooms, is all on one level. Two separate detached guest houses have bedrooms and bathrooms. The garage is detached with a covered walkway to the home, and over the garage is an apartment with a full kitchen, laundry room, full bathroom and living room. The garage apartment has a patio with a concrete roof and ICF walls under the patio which makes a second storm shelter and storage room. The couple have traveled extensively and will have friends visiting from all over the world. The detached guest rooms allow guests to feel welcome, while also having their own space to retreat to. “We built the three detached quarters because we didn’t want guests to feel like they were imposing,” he says. Designer Joe Volpe has more than 35 years experience designing homes, but he had never designed an ICF home. McDowell says he was quickly on board to use ICFs and it was an easy transition for him to allow for the 17-inch thickness of the exterior walls. The home’s barrel vaults, groin vaults, domes and eyebrow arches add visual interest and are features not often seen with ICF homes. Each room of the home has a different plate height (the measure of the highest and lowest point of the exterior walls).


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One thing that helped them plan out the home functionally was 3D model which allowed virtual walkthroughs. The McDowells walked through scenarios such as bringing home groceries and walking into the home through the garage. They noticed that stepping up to enter the walkway and opening two doors with hands full of grocery bags would not work well. They were able to design around those inconveniences by extending the driveway with pavers around the side of the house to provide direct entry to the kitchen and pantry, which has an extra refrigerator and freezer. THE BENEFITS OF 3D During the design phase, an HVAC installer misunderstood the dimensions of the home’s attic and insisted that the couple needed to add additional space to the master closet and add in a mechanical room — which would not have been desirable due to the closet flow being interrupted. The plans had been changed when McDowell used the 3D model to confirm to the HVAC contractor that there was actually room in the attic for the HVAC equipment. They kept the extra five feet of space in the master closet, which delighted Louanne. “Because we had the 3D designs we knew what we could do to make the whole thing work,” McDowell says. “The 3D model was invaluable in so many ways including refining the design in the design phase and interpreting design features during the building process. We are still using the model to consider decorating features.” COMMON SENSE ENERGY MANAGEMENT The McDowells took a common sense approach to energy management. Rather than investing in solar at the outset, the McDowells invested in the highest grade of energy-efficient 8

Concrete Homes • July/August 2018

windows available. Geothermal ground loop heat pumps make heating and cooling more efficient, and Icynene provided insulation around the whole envelope of the home, not just the ceiling. “Net zero energy consumption was never an objective,” McDowell says. “Chasing the last kilowatt of energy didn’t make sense to us. The payback period becomes unreasonable after a point of diminishing returns is reached.” The home took two years to build, from 2011 to 2013. Prior to starting the build, Pat and Louanne spent a year and a half working with their designer to create and refine the design. To finish the exterior, the couple chose 5 1/2-inch-thick builder stone, with 75 percent of the stone coming from Texas and 25 percent coming from Arizona. “It’s all got moss on it,” says McDowell. “The Arizona stone is larger and field cut, not chopped into a shape.” The interior is finished with travertine tile in the bathroom and kitchens and an engineered wood product with a hardwood veneer for most of the wood floors inside. More than 990 tons of stone provide decorative touches around the interior and exterior. Inside, they finished the interior walls to a level 5 drywall, whereas most Texas homes only have level 3. A level 3 drywall job, McDowell explains, has three coats of mud that is feathered out and sanded to smooth out the joints. A level 5 wall takes that two steps further and floats out the entire wall for smoothness. “It is a noticeable difference and people do comment on it,” McDowell explains. They chose all LED lighting in order to be as efficient as possible, and have a smart home with lighting controls, burglar alarm, distributed audio and video, and HVAC that they can control from anywhere in the world.


Despite all those features, the ICF use is what really makes the home all that it was dreamed of being when the McDowells started their scrapbook of ideas 25 years ago. “I really believe that ICFs are a fantastic way to build,” says McDowell. “In my opinion it’s the only way to build. There’s more cost when you compare ICFs to stick-framed costs, but then you roll that up into the total cost of the house and the cost difference is marginal. I think it’s well worth it and I’m really surprised more people aren’t doing it.”

PROJECT STATISTICS TYPE OF PROJECT: PRIVATE RESIDENCE LOCATION: TEXAS HILL COUNTRY, LLANO COUNTY SQUARE FOOTAGE: 5,933 SQUARE FEET ICF SYSTEM: NUDURA, NUDURA.COM ICF INSTALLER: MIKE PILLEY ENTERPRISES, 101HIGHLANDLAKES.COM/PILLEY ICF USE: 8,764 SQUARE FEET FORM DISTRIBUTOR: FUTURESTONE, FUTURESTONE.COM TOTAL CONSTRUCTION TIME: 2 YEARS ICF INSTALLATION TIME: 68 DAYS ARCHITECT: JOE VOLPE DESIGN JOSEPHVOLPEDESIGNER.COM OWNER AND GENERAL CONTRACTOR: PAT McDOWELL INSULATION: ICYNENE ICYNENE.COM SMART HOME AUTOMATIONS: SAVANT SAVANT.COM July/August 2018 • Concrete Homes

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industrynews NEW MOBILE APP FEATURES AUTOMATED CONSTRUCTION REBATES & TRAINING TOOLS AxisPointe has launched several new features for its awardwinning InSite Mobile field app that opens the door to automatic product rebates, remote QA monitoring and more. The slew of features provides customers with the industry’s first integration to link product manufacturers, banking institutions, and insurance partners for cost and liability reduction. Builders can earn hundreds of dollars in cash rebates by selecting products and using InSite Mobile to track daily construction progress. For projects with construction loans, new features slash bank draw cycle times up to 80-percent, allowing builders to receive funds rapidly and reduce bank draw inspection costs. By promoting product-specific checkpoints on the AxisPointe platform, manufacturers can see for the first time where their products are, who is installing them, and exactly when the home will close escrow. If a problem is detected, the manufacturer can instantly alert the field installer and provide training — all within the app. This direct connection with the installer will help encourage proper installation techniques and give builders another set of eyes watching their home construction. After receiving input from several financial lenders, AxisPointe developed a new dashboard where all project funding activities are displayed in real time. For rebates on products and materials, AxisPointe hopes to register hundreds of new product manufacturers who can remotely view their products being installed, offer instant support, and help ensure that their products are being properly installed. More than 300,000 construction products are already linked in AxisPointe databases to provide document sharing to builders, installers and homeowners. axispointe.com

SEVERAL COMPANIES JOIN THE CONCRETE FOUNDATIONS ASSOCIATION Duraform has been the leader in residential, agricultural and light commercial concrete forming systems since 1957. Duraform Ltd. PO Box 365 Waunakee, WI 53597 duraform.com CPE America PO Box 1067 Metter, GA 30439 cpeamerica.com 10

Concrete Homes • July/August 2018

Concrete Pump Engineering started in partnership with Hanwoo (now Everdigm) in 2004 and is now leaders in the supply of concrete placing systems to the domestic, commercial and industrial construction sectors. NUDURA 27 Hooper Rd. Unit 10 Barrie, ON L4N 9S3 nudura.com NUDURA Insulated Concrete Forms are a proven method for providing a better alternative to traditional building methods. Avontus Software 2120 Shattuck Ave. Ste 804 Berkeley, CA 94704 avontus.com Since 2002 Avontus Software has been producing quality software for concrete formwork contractors. Concrete Foundations Association members receive education and technology resources, answers to technical questions, networking, awards and more. To learn more about joining the Concrete Foundations Association as a member, see their website, cfawalls.org/join.

MILWAUKEE TOOL ANNOUNCES EXPANSION OF HEADQUARTERS With a planned total investment of $32 million, Milwaukee Tool is proposing another major expansion at their global new product development center in Brookfield, Wisconsin. A 114,500 square foot, multi-story building would be built on an existing 3.5 acre lot owned by Milwaukee Tool, bringing their global headquarter space from 190,000 square feet, originally, to a proposed total of 504,500 square feet. Over the last several years, Milwaukee Tool has experienced rapid growth, expanding employment at its Brookfield campus from just over 300 jobs in 2011 to almost 1,300 this year. This expansion would lead to the creation of 350 additional new jobs in the next 5 years, with an average annual salary of $75,000. “We must grow or die. We are committed to delivering a world-class work environment to attract, retain, and recruit the best talent in the world.” said Steve Richman, Milwaukee Tool


industrynews Group President. “This investment is necessary for Milwaukee Tool to continue to deliver disruptive innovation and deliver on our commitment to users and distribution partners in driving productivity on the jobsite.” milwaukeetool.com CONTRACT AWARDED FOR TALLEST ICF HIGH RISE IN U.S. A 16-story mixed-use development near New York City will set a new benchmark for the construction industry. The innovative project will be the most energy-efficient large-scale buildings in Westchester County, New York. It is projected to be the tallest building to be built in the United States with Insulated Concrete Forms (ICFs). The development, dubbed 42 Broad, is a luxury transitoriented-development (TOD) located in Mount Vernon’s prestigious Fleetwood neighborhood. The site is three blocks from the Metro-North Railroad Harlem Line (Fleetwood stop – 30 minutes to Grand Central Station) in Westchester County. The project–a joint venture of The Bluestone Organization, Alexander Development Group, and JP Morgan Chase–consists of 249 luxury rental apartments, approximately 20,000 sq. ft. of retail space, and the refurbishment of an adjacent parking garage. Fitting the character of the neighborhood, tenant amenities will be first-class. Plans call for a heated swimming pool, large community/party room, fully equipped gym, and a library/reading room. Structural walls for the 16-story tower will be formed with Insulated Concrete Forms (ICFs), which sandwich a core of steel-reinforced concrete between panels of rigid polystyrene foam insulation on each side. While a handful of ICF buildings exceeding 16 stories have been built in Canada, 42 Broad Street is reported to be the tallest ICF building in the United States. In another innovative first, the ICFs will arrive at the jobsite as custom-made panels up to 50-feet in length. The panelization will be done off-site at an assembly plant operated by ICF Panels of Scotia, New York. On multi-story projects such as this one, 100% of the walls can be panelized prior to construction of the applicable floors. Michael Cleary, president of ICF Panels, estimates that panelization will shorten the construction schedule by several months, allowing the building to be occupied significantly earlier than would otherwise be possible. “Owners and developers will see that building with ICF Panels is literally ‘money in the bank’,” he says. “Opening early at this project allows them to gain access to millions of dollars in extra rent that is otherwise unavailable.” Panels will be delivered to the jobsite ready to be braced and poured. Bucks, weld plates, and lintel rebar will be installed prior to shipping. The majority of the reinforcing steel for temperature and shrinkage control will be replaced with Helix Steel, a twisted steel micro rebar technology developed for the military that creates a stronger concrete with better consolida-

tion and pour characteristics. ICF Panels has proved its methods on other high-profile projects, including 350 Clarkson Ave. in Brooklyn. Panelization offers a number of other benefits, such as reduced hazard insurance, less form waste, virtually no weather delays, and improved worker productivity. It’s an attractive option for commercial developers, designers, ICF installers and others wanting to maximize profits and gain market share. icfpanels.com

From left to right: award winners Sheldon Gier, Gabriel Ojeda, Bill Germany

AMERICAN CONCRETE PUMPING ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCES AWARD WINNERS The American Concrete Pumping Association (ACPA) announced the recipients of the 2017 ACPA Awards 2017 ACPA Safe Operator of the Year – Sheldon Gier, Kokosing Construction Company, Fredericksburg, Ohio. On the jobsite at Kokosing Construction Company, Sheldon Gier is known as a mentor and leader who is capable, confident, and committed to emphasize the company mission of working and living with safety on the mind. Gier has held certification as an ACPA concrete pump operator for more than 12 years of his 30-year construction career. He recently reached the achievement of working 10,000 man-hours accident-free and has had no damage to date to any equipment or accidents involving Kokosing equipment. 2017 ACPA Hall of Fame Award – Gabriel Ojeda, Fritz-Pak Corporation, Dallas, Texas. Gabriel Ojeda, President and CEO of Fritz-Pak Corporation, was born in Mexico City and raised and educated in Mexico. In 1984, Ojeda began working for Fritz Industries in Dallas and began managing the international promotion of Fritz Industries’ newly patented product, Slick-Pak, in 1994. In 1998, an opportunity arose for Ojeda to buy the Admixture Division of Fritz Industries, and he and his wife Jane formed Fritz-Pak Corporation. As Fritz-Pak grew, Ojeda continued his involvement in the ACPA by working on committees and serving on the Board as a Manufacturing Member since 2006. Ojeda is the first recipient of the newly formed ACPA Hall of Fame Award. 2017 ACPA Lifetime Achievement – Bill Germany, Tri-Way Concrete Pumping, Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas. Bill Germany’s long history in the concrete pumping industry began in 1976 when he formed Bill’s Pumping Service. In 1977, Germany merged his pumping company with Tri-Way Concrete Pumping, the company his father founded in 1968. Through integrity and hard work, Germany helped build a business that became known for exceptional service and equipment for construcJuly/August 2018 • Concrete Homes

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industrynews tion projects in Dallas-Fort Worth and beyond. Germany has remained committed to advancing the concrete pumping industry as an active member of the ACPA and its board of directors. The ACPA Awards promote merit and achievement in the concrete pumping industry and recognize individuals who have made exemplary contributions to ACPA. Award winners embody the core values of advancing the concrete pumping industry and commitment to ACPA. The ACPA is a non-profit association which serves as an advocate for the concrete pumping industry committed to promotion, education and safety for its members and all those coming into contact with a concrete pump on the construction job site. concretepumpers.com

Regional Directors: Region 2: Gary Brown – R.L. McCoy Inc. Indianapolis,  Indiana Region 4: Doug Doggett – Concrete & Materials Placement LLC, Charlotte, North Carolina Region 6: Chris Pernicano – San Diego Concrete Pumping Inc., Santee, California Distributor Directors: Tony Inglese – CPE America LLC, Metter, Georgia Manufacturer Directors: Bob Hamilton, Construction Forms Inc., Port Washington, Wisconsin Peter Mendel – Putzmeister America Inc., Sturtevant,  Wisconsin Gabriel Ojeda – Fritz-Pak Corporation, Mesquite, Texas concretepumpers.com

Back Row: Doug Marquis, Peter Mendel, Nathan Germany, Carl Walker, Roy Thompson, Wayne Bylsma, Todd Morgan, Bob Hamilton, Eric Duiker, Tom O’Malley Front Row: Chris Pernicano, Doug Doggett, Nick Avella, Gabriel Ojeda, Dennis Andrews, Bruce Young, Tony Inglese, Gary Brown, Beth Langhauser, Richard O’Brien

AMERICAN CONCRETE PUMPING ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCES ELECTIONS RESULTS The American Concrete Pumping Association (ACPA) announced the election of its new Executive Board. Elected to serve a one-year term, the newly selected Executive Board includes: President: Gary Brown – R. L. McCoy Inc., Indianapolis, Indiana Vice President: Wayne Bylsma – Cherokee Pumping Inc., Hampton, Georgia Secretary: Eric Duiker – Cancrete Equipment, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada Treasurer: Tony Inglese – CPE America LLC, Smyrna,  Georgia Past President: Beth Langhauser, Midwest Placing, Rock  Island, Illinois The ACPA announced results of recent elections for the following board positions: Pump Directors: Wayne Bylsma – Cherokee Pumping Inc., Hampton, Georgia Todd Morgan – Ramcrete Inc., Hamilton, Ohio Nathan Germany – Tri-Way Concrete Pumping Inc.,  Roanoke, Texas Doug Marquis – Conco Pumping and Belting Inc., Fontana, California 12

Concrete Homes • July/August 2018

Barrier One Headquarters in Winter Garden, Florida

SLAG CEMENT AWARDS HONOR UNIQUE PROJECTS FROM ACROSS THE U.S. Nine outstanding projects from across the United States using slag cement were honored at the American Concrete Institute’s Spring Convention in Salt Lake City, Utah. During an educational session in March the Slag Cement Association (SCA) presented the 2017 Project of the Year Awards. Each project was selected by the SCA’s Technical Marketing Committee because of its exemplary and innovative uses of slag cement in concrete mix design. Nine awards were presented in the following categories: Architectural, Durability, Green Design, High Performance, Innovative Application and Sustainability. “The SCA’s awards program does a great job of showcasing how versatile slag cement can be, and how it can help create stronger, more durable, and sustainable concrete structures,” said Ed Griffith, SCA president “These case studies are a great resource for the industry.” More information, photos and videos on each project available at the SCA website. Barrier One Headquarters – Winter Garden, Florida (shown in picture)


Member Company: Lehigh Hanson Category: Architectural This building is using 50 percent slag cement in all concrete applications, including foundation, slab-on-grade, paving, sidewalks, casting beds and tilt-up panels. The concrete overachieved required strength designations and the slag cement also helped contribute to the superior performance of the tilt-up concrete where early lifting strength was required. slagcement.org

From left to right: Rusty Fowler, Rick Johnson, Bryan Rich

AEM ELECTS DIRECTORS TO AG AND CE SECTOR BOARDS The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) has elected Rusty Fowler, President & CEO of Krone NA, to the AEM AG Sector Board, and Rick Johnson, CEO of Charles Machine Works, and Bryan Rich, Chairman & CEO of SmartEquip, to the AEM CE Sector Board. The trio fill unexpired terms. AEM officers and directors provide strategic direction and guidance on behalf of all member companies for Association action in areas including public policy, market data and exhibitions, as well as technical, safety and regulatory issues, and education/training. “We welcome our new directors and greatly appreciate their dedication to the off-road equipment industry. AEM’s success in helping its membership and the industry succeed in changing business conditions would not be possible without active member participation, and we welcome their knowledge and leadership,” said AEM President Dennis Slater. AEM is the North American-based international trade group representing off-road equipment manufacturers and suppliers, with more than 950 companies and more than 200 product lines in the agriculture and construction-related sectors worldwide. aem.org CONSTRUCTION FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION ELECTS 2018-19 EXECUTIVE OFFICERS The Construction Financial Management Association (CFMA) announced the election of the 2018-19 Executive Officers. The Executive Officer roles are the highest-ranking volunteer positions within the organization, responsible for representing the interests of more 8,200 members across North America. Effective April 1, CFMA’s Executive Officers are: Chairman Joe McLaughlin, CPA, CCIFP, Austin Industries, Dallas, TX;

Vice Chairman Michelle Eastman, CCIFP, North Mechanical Contracting, Inc. and North Mechanical Services, Inc., Indianapolis, IN; Treasurer Kevin Booth, CCIFP, WestCor Companies, Las Vegas, NV; and Secretary Phil Zack, CPA, CCIFP, Viewpoint Construction Software, Boulder, CO. Since 1981, CFMA is the only association dedicated to bringing together construction financial professionals and those industry partners serving their unique needs. CFMA provides unparalleled education and networking opportunities to more than 8,200 members via the Princeton, NJ HQ office and 98 chapters across North America. cfma.org BASF CORPORATION RECEIVES FIBER REINFORCED CONCRETE ASSOCIATION’S INNOVATIVE PROJECT OF THE YEAR AWARD BASF Corporation has received the 2017 Fiber Reinforced Concrete Association’s (FRCA) Innovative Project of the Year award. A panel of independent judges, comprised of professors from the Concrete Industry Management Department of Middle Tennessee State University, awarded BASF first place in the competition’s synthetic fibers category. BASF won the honor for its work on the expansion of the Palo Verde Water Reclamation Facility in Maricopa, Arizona. The project was underway when ready-mixed concrete producer Arizona Materials contacted BASF seeking assistance in developing an engineered slab solution for Global Water Resources, Inc’s. water clarifying system. The new system would require the reduction of the number of construction and contraction joints, elimination of steel bar reinforcement, and control of concrete cracking induced by temperature and drying shrinkage. BASF concrete experts evaluated the project and recommended the use of the BASF EJS to address the situation. The EJS system employs an ultra-low fiber-reinforced concrete mixture tailored to a specific project’s required joint spacing combined with sound concreting and construction practices. BASF used its proprietary Master Builders Solutions Intelligent e-Tool – a custom tool enabling individual project analysis and concrete technology solutions – to determine the proper mix of BASF’s MasterFiber and MasterLife products to provide an effective and efficient solution for the facility’s construction. BASF experts guided the project’s engineers and concrete contractor and with the BASF EJS system, provided a durable fiber-reinforced concrete system of three 68-foot (20.7-meters) diameter high-performance floor slabs. The slab floor pour time was reduced from two separate pours to one single monolithic pour. In addition to increased concrete placement efficiency, all secondary steel reinforcement was removed. Construction and drying shrinkage joints were also removed, thus eliminating the need for all water stops. The use of the BASF EJS system reduced the total slab construction time by five days. master-builders-solutions.basf.us July/August 2018 • Concrete Homes

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product newsroundup Meadow Burke Announces Super Lynk Meadow Burke’s Super Lynk is a new panel-to-foundation connection system. Super Lynk is a fast, strong and discreet way to permanently connect concrete panels to footings. It requires only a single bolt to make the connection — no welds, grout or epoxy. meadowburke.com

Bosch Announces Numerous New Products Bosch Blaze Outdoor Connected Laser Measures Work In Any Light Using a standard laser measure outside is often a hit or miss affair, dependent upon cloud cover, trees and a building roof or overhang that may block the sun. All of these random elements are now history thanks to the advanced technology and versatility of the Bosch Blaze Outdoor GLM400C Connected Laser Measure with Viewfinder and the Bosch Blaze Outdoor GLM400CL Connected Laser Measure with Camera. Both outdoor laser measures rely on a 5.0-megapixel, 8X zoom camera with scratch-proof screen to find the laser target at up to 400 ft. in bright conditions, expansive indoor space or against busy backdrops. The easy-to-read color display illuminates large numbers and provides clear resolution in dark areas. The BLAZE GLM400CL version can take photos and

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comes with memory for 50 measurements and storage for up to 200 images, in addition to a lithium-ion battery. Bosch GSH27-26 Brute Hammers with GPS Tracking Allow Real-Time Location Anywhere The Bosch GSH27-26 Brute Turbo is the world’s first breaker hammer with GPS tracking that makes sure jobsite managers know where this powerful tool is at all times; a retrofit option (GPS25-4) brings the same capability to all current Bosch SDSmax hammers. The Bosch GPS device on the Brute Turbo and the SDS-max hammer retrofit offer always-on location tracking. The device works for months at a time because it’s powered by a Lithiumion battery that recharges automatically a soon as the tool is plugged in. In addition, the tracking device can notify a user about various activities, including non-working hour activation and non-authorized location use. Users are notified about these actions via cellular network on a smart phone. The tracking feature, which reverts to cellular network coverage when GPS is not available, can be managed through the free Bosch GPS tracking app (available for Android and iOS). The app can be found online at the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store. During the first twelve months of ownership the tracking service is free; after the initial one-year period the service will cost of $9.99 per month or $99 per year.

Bosch GWS18V-45C Angle Grinder Has ConnectedReady Power The Bosch GWS18V-45C 18V EC Brushless ConnectedReady 4-1/2 in. Angle Grinder delivers the convenience of cordless grinder operation with advanced user control. The grinder features an EC brushless motor that offers maximum efficiency and low maintenance, plus connected-ready capability that delivers next-generation control like maintenance review and performance notifications. The Bosch GWS18V-45C grinder delivers outstanding performance, including metal cutting, thanks to the powerful EC Brushless motor design. This Bosch-exclusive design provides greater runtime and more power than similar cordless grinders with brushed motors. That means professionals can rely on a cordless grinder that delivers 10,000 no-load rpm, but doesn’t forego power in favor of maneuverability.


productnewsroundup The grinder offers plug-in connected-ready capability by supplying an interface that works with the optional Bosch GCY30-4 Bluetooth connectivity module. It provides next-generation user control by interfacing with the free Bosch Toolbox app on a mobile phone. Users can customize the grinder, changing the speed of the soft-start function, setting the brightness of the LED and receiving battery charge and KickBack Control status updates. Bosch Leveling and Alignment Lasers Deliver Accuracy When the job is leveling and alignment, sometimes it takes a family to get the job done right. Bosch GLL3-330CG, GLL3-330C and GLL3-300 Three-Plane Leveling and Alignment Line Lasers deliver accuracy, long range and convenient all-in-one job layout to meet a variety of tasks on the jobsite. The self-leveling lasers provide one 360° horizontal plane and two 360° vertical planes with references that cover the floor, wall and ceiling to serve all leveling needs. The two vertical lines cross at 90° angles so the user can quickly arrange and square the layout of the room from one mark. The family of Bosch three-plane leveling and alignment line lasers will be available as of March 2018. Bosch Bulldog Xtreme SDS-plus Rotary Hammer Bits Bosch Bulldog Xtreme SDS-plus Hammer Bits are now optimized for use with cordless power tools based on a robust 4-to-2 flute design that ensures speed in dust removal with less potential for binding. The Bulldog Xtreme line is a wide range of full-head carbide for bits up to 5/8″ that delivers 4X life drilling in concrete with rebar, yet offers high-speed drilling with precision. Advanced geometry ensures performance with less carbide wear. Bits beyond 5/8-inch feature a robust four-cutter design that offers 180-degree cutting diameter and 100 percent power transfer during drilling. In addition, four symmetrical 90-degree side angles create a wider and sharper tip versus competitive bits to aggressively cut through tough material like rebar. Bosch GAS18V-02 18V Cordless Hand-held Vacuum is Lightweight, Convenient Jobsite Cleanup Option The Bosch GAS18V-02N 18V Cordless Hand-held Vacuum Cleaner provides a lightweight, convenient cleanup solution on any jobsite. With two-stage rotational airflow technology, this easyto-maneuver vacuum keeps the filter clog-free longer for sustained suction. The filter is washable. The 18-volt cordless vacuum’s two-stage rotational airflow technology features a first stage that captures 90 percent of debris, while the second stage removes finer particles from the airflow to help keep the HEPA filter clog-free longer. The vacuum weighs only 2.9 Lbs. (tool only, battery not included), but delivers great power and long runtime using the Bosch power system. The powerful motor provides up to 21.2 CFM of airflow and supplies up to seven minutes of runtime per battery amp hour (Ah). 877-BOSCH-99 boschtools.com

Northeast Precast Launches Prespan Floor System Northeast Precast, manufacturer of custom precast panels and systems, has announced the introduction of a new product: Prespan. The patented new flooring system features insulated precast floor planks for both residential and commercial projects. Prespan allows builders to gain a clear span of the entire building to create a full basement or crawl space walls under the garage. The rigid product features less deflection and is 25 percent lighter compared to hollow core planks. Northeast Precast’s Prespan floor plank system installs well with all concrete wall types. There are no manufacturing job size limitations. Northeast Precast’s efficient manufacturing processes allow for projects of all sizes. northeastprecast.com

Aquajet Systems’ Aqua Spine Takes Hydrodemolition to New Spaces Aquajet Systems AB, a global leader in hydrodemolition machine manufacturing, introduces the Aqua Spine. The multimodular system uses high-pressure water jets to precisely remove concrete from surfaces that may be inaccessible for Aqua Cutter robots, Aquajet’s traditional hydrodemolition machines. Hydrodemolition uses high-pressure water jets to precisely remove sound, deteriorated or damaged concrete. The sustainable method leaves rebar undamaged while protecting and preserving existing concrete. The Aqua Spine eliminates vibrations that cause microfracturing as well as reduces exposure to harmful silica dust. The method leaves a sound surface ready to accept new material. Aquajet designed the Aqua Spine as a multi-modular system with a single feed beam to ensure adaptability to different applications. The system adjusts from 3-19 feet (1-6 meters) and works well in applications such as roads and bridges, hydro and nuclear power plants, and underwater demolition. The modular design allows the Aqua Spine to enter hard-to-reach corners, where the floor and wall meet, to remove concrete without the use of hand lances. An Aqua Cutter robot or standard Power Control Unit controls the Aqua Spine. A separate Power Pack contains everything else needed for the job. It provides easy handling for equipment, accessories and tools and houses a powerful diesel motor and high-pressure pump. aquajet.se July/August 2018 • Concrete Homes

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product newsroundup

Photo courtesy of Milwaukee Tool

Text and photos by Vanessa Salvia

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N MAY 2, 3, AND 4, CONCRETE HOMES MAGAZINE WAS A GUEST OF MILWAUKEE TOOL FOR THEIR ANNUAL NEW PRODUCT SYMPOSIUM (NPS18) IN MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN. THE 100 OR SO GUESTS FROM ALL FACETS OF THE MEDIA — PRINT PUBLICATIONS LIKE OURS, YOUTUBERS, HGTV HOSTS — WERE AMONG THE FIRST TO EXPERIENCE THE DOZENS OF MILWAUKEE TOOL PRODUCTS SCHEDULED TO LAUNCH IN 2018. MILWAUKEE TOOL WORKS CLOSELY WITH INDIVIDUAL INDUSTRIES TO LEARN HOW THE TRADES ACTUALLY USE THE TOOLS AND WHAT MODIFICATIONS ARE NEEDED TO MAKE MILWAUKEE’S TOOL THE LEADERS IN THE INDUSTRY. HERE ARE SOME OF THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THE MANY NEW AND IMPROVED PRODUCTS THAT MILWAUKEE TOOL ANNOUNCED, FROM REMODELING AND LAYOUT SOLUTIONS, TO THE NEWEST LIGHTING, M12 AND M18 CORDLESS POWER TOOLS, HAND TOOLS, AND ACCESSORIES. Milwaukee Tool President Steve Richman kicked off the New Product Symposium 2018 with a speech looking back at the history of the 94-year-old company and its future as an industry disruptor.

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productnewsroundup RedLithium Generating the equivalent of 15-amp corded power, the new HD12.0 Battery delivers 50 percent more power, runs 50 percent cooler, and provides 33 percent more run-time than the powerful HD9.0 battery – significantly elevating the performance of the entire M18 System. The HD12.0 Battery utilizes newto-world cell technology that provides a massive leap in the overall power and capabilities. The advanced pack design of the HD12.0 also makes it the best cold weather performing pack ever made. Launches July 2018.

Some Milwaukee Tool concrete solutions include its M12 Universal Hammer Vac Dust Extractor and M18 Dedicated Hammer Vac Dust Extractor with an updated Dust Box design that delivers OSHA Table 1 compliance. This new design allows the user to easily clean the filter with the press of a button. The M12 Universal Hammer Vac is the only tool of its kind, designed to be used with all major brands of SDS Plus rotary hammers and utilizes a replaceable HEPA filter. The M18 Dedicated Hammer Vac features an in-line design engineered to connect directly to, and be powered by, the M18 Fuel 1-inch and 1-1/8-inch SDS Plus Rotary Hammers. Launches May 2018.

Demonstrating the world’s first 18V large angle grinders. The new M18 Fuel 7-inch or 9-inch Large Angle Grinders generate the power of a 15-amp corded LAG, are up to 2 pounds lighter than the leading corded units and feature a 9-inch grinding capacity. The new tool combines the PowerState brushless motor, RedLithium battery pack, and RedLink Plus intelligence. Milwaukee reengineered these critical cordless components to deliver the very best performance catered to this tool and its applications. Launches July 2018.

July/August 2018 • Concrete Homes

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product newsroundup RedStick Digital Levels with PinPoint Measurement Technology delivers superior accuracy and a dynamic read out experience. PinPoint brings precision measurement features such as pin and fine mode, and enhanced visual and audio signals in a dynamic 360-degree full-color display to these levels. Built with an advanced calibration process, these digital levels are accurate to .03 degrees and have frame strength that can hold more than 450 pounds. It is powered by RedLithium USB batteries that can recharge in an hour. RedStick Expandable Levels allow users to consistently frame more doors, windows, and walls requiring no maintenance and providing long life. Equipped with reinforced internal components and an inset lock, the levels withstand heavy and frequent use. These levels offer SharpSite Vial Technology for best readability, durability and reliability backed by the Milwaukee Lifetime Accuracy Guarantee. There will be two Expandable Level sizes: Magnetic 48- to 78-inch for door, window and point-to-point install applications, and the 78-inch to 144-inch is a dedicated plate-toplate solution for building tradesmen plumbing walls or forms up to 12 feet. Launches October 2018.

Through a ground-up redesign of their motor, electronics, and mechanism, Milwaukee has created drilling and fastening solutions that achieve 60 percent more power, up to 2X faster speeds, and are the most compact tools in the industry. With the addition of One-Key, each can be completely customized for better control over power, speed and consistency while including newly enhanced features like kickback control and a self-tapping screw mode that automatically shuts the tool off once seated. M18 Fuel with One-Key Drill/Driver Hammer Drill and Impact Drivers launch October 2018.

Engineered to survive the jobsite and outlast the elements, Milwaukee RedLithium USB Heated Gloves are built for tradesman to use on and off the job. Focused on providing reinforcement in areas where other gloves fail, GridIron Ripstop Polyester protects against abrasion and tearing while 100 percent leather palms and fingers add dexterity and extra durability. Powered by RedLithium USB, these gloves offer up to 6 hours of runtime, keeping users warm in extreme cold. Launches September 2018.

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low-rise construction

N.J. BEACH HOUSE READY FOR 2018 HURRICANE SEASON

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ET THE WINDS BLOW AND THE SEAS ROAR. THANKS TO SMART CONSTRUCTION DECISIONS BACK IN 2013, THE DISANDRO FAMILY HOME IN WILDWOOD, NEW JERSEY, IS READY FOR MOTHER NATURE TO BLOW IN WITH ANOTHER HURRICANE SEASON.

Located on the back bay of Wildwood Crest about a half mile from the Atlantic Ocean, the DiSandro home was built using 2x6 construction, impact-resistant windows and the Prespan flooring system. The precast concrete floor planks provided the DiSandros with open spaces for their home with no columns or load bearing walls. ARCHITECT PERSPECTIVE “There are several reasons why I like specifying Prespan concrete floor planking in our designs,” says Blane Steinman, RA with Blane Steinman Architects in Clermont, New Jersey (bsa. besarchitects.com) “Like the DiSandro residence, we typically design houses in the harsh seashore environment,” he continues. “Our projects

are often subject to flood conditions, hurricane wind forces, salt air spray and sandy soil conditions. Concrete plank flooring is a flood compatible material. It’s strong, fire- and insect-resistant, and is built to last. This flooring provides a solid feel that our clients appreciate, is environmentally friendly and energy efficient.” Steinman points out that the DiSandro home is located in a “V” (or “Velocity Wave Action”) zone designated by FEMA. The Prespan floor system from Northeast Precast is flood compatible and capable of withstanding the harsh seashore environment. “I’m confident of this product,” says Steinman. “I’ve specified the Prespan floor system many times on projects located on the barrier islands from Avalon down to Cape May. This is a dependable product that fits in ideally with the conditions our New Jersey coastline faces.”


low-rise construction HOMEOWNER VIEW From the homeowners’ perspective, the Prespan flooring was able to do more than just help protect their home, it also supported their overall construction needs. “Our original decision to use the Prespan flooring was based on saving height for building height limitations,” says homeowner Ernie DiSandro. “Once installed we immediately saw other benefits to the precast concrete product. We’re enjoying the increased stability and insulation on the floors along with their quietness. We were able to use hardwood floors on top of the Prespan floor planks and we’re very happy with the overall results.” During the seven years since the home’s construction, the family has gained peace-of-mind from the construction elements included in their home. “Our house was built during the time immediately after Hurricane Sandy when the building regulations were a little more conservative,” says DiSandro. “As a result, we are a few feet higher than the current base flood regulations. Hopefully we’ll never need to worry about floods. However, it’s great to know we have a solid base for our house that will sustain severe weather conditions.” Northeast Precast’s Prespan floor plank system installs well with all concrete wall types. There are no manufacturing job size limitations. The product allows builders to gain a clear span of an entire building to create a full basement or crawl space walls

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under a garage. The rigid product features less deflection and is 25 percent lighter compared to hollow core planks. ABOUT NORTHEAST PRECAST Northeast Precast is a state-of-the-art precast concrete manufacturer located in Millville, New Jersey, that offers commercial products and residential foundation wall systems. For more information visit www.northeastprecast.com.


low-rise construction

CONCRETE MICRO HOMES OF THE FUTURE Text by Chrissy Jones • Images courtesy of James Law Cybertecture

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VERY AMERICAN WANTS TO OWN THEIR OWN HOME. FINANCIALLY IT ISN’T ALWAYS POSSIBLE, PARTICULARLY IF YOU’RE A FIRST TIME BUYER. ACCORDING TO THE NEW YORK TIMES FROM 2017, THE NATIONWIDE AVERAGE HOME PRICE IS $182,500. EVEN WITH A DEPOSIT AS LOW AS 6 PERCENT, THIS AMOUNT CAN BE A STRUGGLE. IT TURNS OUT THAT CONCRETE MAY WELL BE THE ANSWER! A LITTLE INGENUITY AND IMAGINATION HAS BROUGHT A SOLUTION — MICRO HOMES MADE FROM CONCRETE TUBES. HONG KONG HOUSING CRISIS There is a housing crisis in Hong Kong, partially due to the sheer number of people living in the city. The demand for homes is so high that James Law Cybertecture came up with the idea of repurposing concrete pipes, stacked over one another in a honeycomb form. These concrete micro homes, dubbed “Opods” provide 100 square foot of livable space, and are complete with electricity and plumbing. The ends of the Opods are glazed, to provide natural light throughout the tubes, which are 2.5 meters (8.2 feet) in diameter. This shows just how durable concrete is as a building material. HOW MUCH DOES AN OPOD COST? The cost of purchasing an Opod is around $15,000. The price is so small, you can pay on your credit card, rather than needing to get a mortgage or other loan. You can rent pods, too, for around $500 a month. Considering that the average rent is five

times this amount, this is a bargain. It makes it affordable for people in their late teens and early twenties to move out of their parent’s home, without great expense. It is a small price to pay for independence and security. WHAT DO YOU GET FOR YOUR MONEY? The concrete homes have a living room, including a couch that folds into a bed, a storage area for your belongings, a small wardrobe and a bathroom with complete with a toilet and a shower. There is drainage from the shower via a slatted floor underneath. The kitchen contains just a mini fridge, but this could be developed as the micro homes are researched. A camping stove type set up would make living in this tiny home more comfortable. Bearing in mind that each Opod has the same kind of facilities that is available in any hotel room in the country, they are completely functional. The homes are modern too — the entrance to the house can be opened using a smartphone. July/August 2018 • Concrete Homes

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fact that the population is booming. Something has to be done to ease the situation, and small concrete homes could be one of the solutions. In cities with a large demand for housing, such as New York, concrete homes can be built into very small spaces in a stylish way. For a far smaller price than conventional apartments and houses, it can make city living accessible. This can be done without compromising the integrity of the existing buildings. There can be affordable homes, where previously this has been out of the question.

SETTING UP OPODS It is the strength and durability of concrete that makes these tiny homes so versatile in a city space where land is at a premium. The concrete tubes are stacked on top of one another, and it doesn’t compromise the material structurally. Because of their shape and size, they can be slotted into the narrowest area, between highrise buildings. Without the need for additional supports they can be stacked up four tubes high. They need to be moved by crane, however, as each tube weighs 20 tons. If you own an Opod, unlike an ordinary house, if you decide to relocate, theoretically you can take your home with you. WHAT WOULD THIS MEAN FOR AMERICA It shouldn’t just be an American dream to own your own home — it should be a reality. Rethinking cheap and affordable housing could include the ingenious use of concrete and industrial concrete tubes. A survey of the country’s mayors has shown that having adequate housing and the affordability of houses as being the number one concern of citizens in cities. There isn’t enough housing construction, or space in many cases, to keep up with demand. What’s more, construction rules have become extremely complicated. There are zoning, and building code loopholes which are a minefield to overcome. It is simply easier for many companies not to build. In the wealthy cities, this has led to a lack of diversity. The neighborhoods that have family homes haven’t had any new construction for 80 years, despite the 22

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FAMILY POSSIBILITIES Even for families, a series of Opod style homes, all linked could provide adequate space, for a fraction of the average house price. Out of the cities, in the areas where land isn’t at a premium, these small concrete structures can be linked up, or placed in a horseshoe formation that can be added to at a later date. A new baby comes along? A new section of your concrete house can be added. A home can be expanded when needed, without having to have the option of building an expensive extension. As the population increases, there will always be the need for new housing. Sometimes what has started out as a prototype, or even a wacky project is a viable solution. The phrase “think out of the box” is used all too often, but the use of Opods in Hong Kong is just that. The simple and idealistic American dream of being able to afford your own home is driving a change in the construction industry. For instance, in Atlanta, a village called Serenbe was built, filled with small one-bedroom houses, specifically for the retirement market—people that don’t have a regular steady income from employment. These homes cost $20,000. There was a need for sustainable, cheap homes, so they were built and they’ve been accepted. Concrete micro homes could be the way forward in providing a home for everyone that needs it. They could provide affordable accommodation to the new generations of people, allowing them to live independently. Concrete really is a material that could drive the housing market into the future. Chrissy Jones is a writer and editor who began her career in financial advisory including helping construction and design startups. She’s spent the last seven years as a freelance writer, working with a range of organizations, as well as helping to educate people on good personal finance habits.


low-rise construction

A BRIEF HISTORY OF AUTOMATED PAYMENTS FOR THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY Text by Jason Krankota

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T ISN’T OFTEN THAT THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY LEADS IN NEW TECHNOLOGY ADOPTION, YET THAT IS THE OPPORTUNITY OFFERED BY A NEW PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN VIEWPOINT, A LEADING CONSTRUCTION SOFTWARE PROVIDER, AND NVOICEPAY, A B2B PAYMENTS AUTOMATION COMPANY. FULL DISCLOSURE: I RECENTLY JOINED NVOICEPAY BECAUSE I KNEW THAT INTEGRATING THEIR PAYMENTS AUTOMATION TECHNOLOGY TO VIEWPOINT’S SYSTEM WAS THE SOLUTION A LOT OF CONSTRUCTION COMPANIES HAVE BEEN WANTING. THIS A RELATIVELY NEW TECHNOLOGY CATEGORY AND EARLY ADOPTERS CAN USE IT TO GAIN A SIGNIFICANT COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE.

It’s been a long time coming. I’ve been selling software and services to the construction industry for about 25 years, both to residential and commercial builders. My first exposure to the payments process was in 2000 when I went to work for a company that was trying to build an e-commerce hub — what today you’d call a marketplace or platform — for home builders, manufacturers, and suppliers. FLAMING OUT We got a quarter of a billion dollars in venture money and flamed out after two years, for a few reasons. Looking back, it was just way too early. These kinds of three-way marketplaces are everywhere now, but it took cloud technology and massive increases in computing power to be able to build them at scale. Even if we had had the technology, I don’t think that the home building industry, save for a few of the national publicly traded builders were big enough and sophisticated enough that it would have made sense to them to invest in something like that at the time. There were a lot of manual processes, and almost all payments were made by check, but construction companies tend to invest more in equipment than technology. It would have been a hard sell. MOVING THE NEEDLE I went back to selling construction software but got back into the payments side in 2009 when I went to work for a company

selling Mastercard into ERPs for commercial construction. Banks were selling similar card programs, but what my company at the time did well was hire people, like me, that knew the industry and could understand how integration would work with their ERP system. We could also look at a contractor’s vendor master and be able to identify vendors that we knew would take a card, so we could quickly calculate the rebates they would get based on their spending with those vendors. We understood the pain points better, and so we were able to connect and make the business case for card payments in a different way that banks were doing. We did an excellent job of exposing a lot of construction companies to the idea that they didn’t have to pay everyone by check. SEEING THE BIGGER PICTURE I wanted to broaden my exposure to more industry verticals, and to more global electronic payment technologies, so I next took a job with Visa to work with banks on electronic payment strategies. What I saw was a lot of complexity. Smaller banks were either looking to adopt an electronic payment solution for the first time or upgrade their existing offering to a more modern platform. Many of the big banks were managing multiple payment solutions to target mid-market and enterprise segments. Some were EDI-based; some were tied to treasury management solutions; some of them were based around corporate cards, some around July/August 2018 • Concrete Homes

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low-rise construction http://www.superformicf.ca http://www.superformocf.ca

ACH. Banks had invested a lot of time and money building in-house payment platforms, and it seemed that many were at a crossroads, trying to determine whether they should continue to put resources toward these platforms or adopt a third-party solution. One thing that became very clear to me was that electronic payment solutions were evolving quickly, and fintech firms, not banks, were on the leading edge. Visa, like Mastercard, was and is proactively partnering with these fintechs to enable virtual cards as a payment option in their solutions. Eventually I made my way to Nvoicepay where I’m helping launch and grow their new Viewpoint partnership. I heard about how they were innovating the construction industry through supplier payment automation and I knew this was something I wanted to be apart of. TOWARD A NEW PAYMENTS PARADIGM The construction industry has come a long way regarding accepting electronic payments, and it’s cool to have been part of that trajectory. In this industry, getting an invoice approved for payment is much more complex than in other industries. You don’t just have people in the back office who have to approve payments. You have construction managers out in the field who have to confirm what percentage of the work has been completed, which will dictate they payment amount. There’s a lot of communication that has to happen, and a lot of room for error. Construction companies are starting to realize that the AP department should be spending its time making sure that they’re paying the right invoices in the right amount at the right time. The last mile, the printing of the check, the stuffing of the envelope, or the assembling of files for ACH and card payments and keeping track of who gets paid how is a low-value activity. If that whole piece can be outsourced to one company that can maximize card payments and rebates, set up ACH for vendors that won’t take cards, and issue checks for those holdouts who still want paper, that’s a tremendous value proposition. We were trying for that way back in 2000; we made headway in card payment acceptance over the next decade or so. Now with the evolution of technologies like optical character recognition that can digitize paper invoices, and workflow software that can move invoices through the approval process, the front end has pretty much been automated. That cleared the way for a company like Nvoicepay to come along and automate executing the payment — not just card payments, or ACH payments but any type of payment. When I saw that, I thought, “If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.”

shweiki.com

shweiki.com

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Jason Krankota is vice president of construction sales at Nvoicepay. Jason develops business for corporate payment solutions designed to streamline accounts payable and expense management processes. He has a BA from the University of Northern Colorado.


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Learn more about our innovation at a training class near you or visit:

Nudura.com www.nudura.com

UPCOMING AD DEADLINES SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2018 2018 ISSUE Ad Closing: July 18 Materials Due: July 25

Contact Gary Pittman, Jr. garypjr@pcinews.com 512.637.0373

Superior Quality, Design-Build Solutions Residential • Commercial • Industrial •Alternative Energy WCI serves the immediate north central Texas market as well as the greater Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota and Arizona markets.

612-363-8227 estimating@willertconstruction.com www.willertconstruction.com

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BUILD SMARTER, BUILD STRONGER

NUDURA ICFs complete the building envelope in one building step.

Residential

Building codes today demand buildings and structures be built with greater energy efficiency by utilizing continuous insulation. NUDURA insulated concrete forms allow you to complete the building envelope with one building product for a stronger and more efficient structure. ICFs feature six building steps in one product allowing faster installation for builders and contractors, while also achieving the demands of todays building codes. Register for a one day training course to learn more about building stronger with NUDURA ICFs on your next project.

www.nudura.com/training | 1-866-468-6299 http://www.nudura.com/training

Commercial

Multi-Storey

Concrete Homes + Low-Rise Construction  

July/August 2018

Concrete Homes + Low-Rise Construction  

July/August 2018