Published on 4/13/2018
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Concrete is trendy
Concrete isn't just trending in 2018 ... It's trendy...
All the photo’s in this article are courtesy of Pop Concrete Supplies and Training
In this article concrete broker founder Tim Harrison discusses the mixture we know as concrete, and comes to the conclusion concrete is not just trending, its actually trendy, and here’s why….
Concrete is trendy
Last night I was sitting down to watch the football and the phone rang. It was a new concrete broker customer commencing a concreting project in Northcote, Melbourne. I discussed his project with him and he said he was looking at pouring a house slab wherein there would feature an exposed aggregate wall downstairs together with polished floors on the ground and suspended levels. We talked about exposed aggregate colours and he mentioned he liked the traditional blacks, whites and greys found within much of the exposed aggregate concrete these days. In turn I said I would refer him to three concreting contractors in his area for quotes on his upcoming project, those being AGVConcreting, PicturePerfectConcreting, and MelbourneEliteConcreting. The new customer went on to explain how he enjoyed the mixture we know to be concrete to such an extent that he was keen to explore my thoughts on having concrete furniture such as bench tops and countertops made for his new home. I immediately thought of PopConcreteSuppliesandTraining who produce a wide range of concrete furniture and Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete (GFRC) products.
The phone call made me then question what is happening here in the world of concrete. During the last year concrete broker has published articles on the expansion of market segments including precast concrete , self stabilising concrete and the decorative concrete market, just to name a few. Concrete has in turn been trending on home design and DIY pages throughout social media, everywhere from Pinterest to Instagram. I began to ponder some more, so what is happening here in the world of concrete? Are the public only just beginning to wake up to the versatility and durability of the mixture we know as concrete, or are there other factors at play here?
I think the simple answer may be found in a combination of factors, including technological advancements. In the early 2000’s the chemical and admixture industry has developed a series of products that have enabled concrete to reach higher and higher strengths, but in doing so they have combined this with the addition of chemicals and admixtures that allow concrete to flow, self stabilise and therein be poured, placed and finished with ease by the end user, the concreter. We now have super plasticisers to make concrete flow during the pouring phase, and viscosity modifying admixtures (VMA’s) to hold the substances together, ensuring your concrete mixture does not segregate and fall apart at the seams, as it were. Likewise technological advancements in the production of concrete sealer and binding agent products have enabled the GFRC market to continue growing, with the concrete furniture products they produce proving to be just as durable and versatile as the concrete they are made from.
Another factor facilitating the changes spoken of above, in the world of concrete, is education. Whilst concreting may not have the same academic status as its engineering and architectural peers, today there a plethora of concrete courses and training programmes on offer for both new and experienced industry participants. These courses are assisting concreting contractors in placing and finishing concrete structures to a higher standard, in making and manufacturing new and innovative concrete designs, and in making polished floors and exposed aggregate finishes more and more aesthetically appealing. Concrete in restaurants, bars, nightclubs, libraries, new commercial buildings together with the wave of concrete housing coming onto the market, are all testament to these advancements in concrete technology, education and knowledge.
So I pondered some more, where to now in the world of concrete? Yes I can visualise an increase in the Calendar Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) in many of the market segments within the concrete industry, as outlined above. Yes I can visualise a growth in the “sharing of information” surrounding the concrete industry, as industry participants continue to move online and engage with social media, industry groups and concreting associations. Can I visualise a continuation in the trending of the mixture we know as concrete? Of course I can. Because concrete isn’t just trending, its trendy. As the Europeans discovered many moons ago concrete is both a versatile and exceptionally durable product, and today with the assistance of advancements in technology and education, the versatility of concrete is coming to the fore. Concrete is continuing to display a resilience over and above other materials and structural compounds. We “the public” are only beginning to experience the aesthetically appealing nature of concrete, through the development of a new wave of contemporary interior and exterior designs, in which concrete is no longer just the structure, it’s in fact the feature…
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