Home The Concrete Advantage

Before during and after construction the advantages of
concrete reinforce the value of concrete construction

Consider that cast-in-place concrete saves money over the entire life of your structure — before, during and after construction.

Cast-in-place concrete can reduce project startup time and start-to-finish time compared with steel. Concrete provides structural economy in many other ways too, including reduced material costs and improved cash flow. It can also maximize marketable space and increase ROI.

Reduced Project Time & Improved Cash Flow

With cast-in-place concrete, materials are readily available; so project planners can count on just-in-time delivery from local suppliers. Since preordering and lengthy delivery time is the norm with steel construction, the ready availability of concrete can save up to 20 weeks or more from the time management receives notice to proceed to actual construction start.

Start-Up Time

Credit: The Ceco Corporation

      Cash Flow Comparison

Credit: The Ceco Corporation

Shorter Start to Finish Time

Perception is that steel is faster than concrete. However, industry data show that once construction begins 13 percent fewer delays are reported during framing compared to steel; and since local labor in the concrete industry is more plentiful, it is quicker to hire workers saving even more time.

Start to Finish Time
(For Office Buildings)

Credit: Concrete Floor and Roof Systems
published by Portland Cement Association

During Construction, the new generation of concrete admixtures and superplasticizers make concrete flow more easily than in the past. Today's concrete solutions set in lower temperatures. So, site-cast concrete construction can proceed year round.

With superplasticizers high concrete strengths can be achieved rapidly, and pouring on successive floors can proceed more quickly. Cast-in-place concrete construction can finish off, and other trades can get on the floor sooner. Electrical, mechanical, plumbing and HVAC systems as well as interior partitions can be installed while the frame is progressing upward.

The flexibility of cast-in-place concrete expedites project completion, enables earlier occupancy and improves ROI.

Maximizes Marketing Space

High-strength mixtures and advanced reinforcing design technologies allow engineers and architects to design longer spans with fewer and smaller columns making more useable floor space available.

Building Volume of Concrete vs. Steel
10 Story Building

Credit: The Ceco Corporation

Concrete has a shorter floor-to-floor height than steel by up to two feet per floor.

Engineers and architects have more versatility with concrete. Because a smaller footprint is required, it is possible to build on smaller confined sites and expand the use of available land. In addition, less space is needed for staging during construction adding flexibility for smaller sites and further reducing investment costs.

Marketable Space

Credit: The Ceco Corporation

Reinforced Value in Building Construction

After construction is complete concrete continues to reinforce its value with aesthetic quality, energy savings, built-in-fire resistance, durability, strength and low maintenance. The ROI of concrete continues long after construction is complete.

Energy Savings

Industry studies prove that compared to steel construction, concrete buildings have decreased heating and cooling expenses. Over a 24 hour period, heat gain calculated by btu / ft2, can be up to 50 percent less adding up to a substantial savings.

Thermal Reservoir Comparison:
Concrete vs. Steel

Credit: Published by Portland Cement Association

Fire Resistance

Concrete is naturally fire-resistant.

Concrete buildings typically qualify for reduced fire insurance rates—up to 60 percent less on fire and extended coverage for warehouses and storage buildings.

If fire does occur, concrete walls and partitions effectively divide the building into compartments, separating areas and limiting the amount of property damage. Research shows that a series of defenses have a much better chance of limiting a fire's spreading than any single mechanism alone. Installed in conjunction with automatic sprinkler and smoke/heat ventilation, concrete provides an effective, multiple phase fire defense system.

Durability, Strength, Low Maintenance

Because concrete can withstand catastrophic loading and there is less movement with concrete structures, buildings have a longer life expectancy. They also are weather-tight, require lower maintenance and have greater resale value than other structures.

Aesthetic Value

Today's concrete technologies provide innovative solutions for architectural interest and versatility in design. New coloring admixtures provide attractive, economical alternatives to exterior finishing. And concrete is adaptable to a variety of surface treatments and shapes resulting in structures that set graciously into any environment.

© RC3 - Reinforced Concrete Construction Committee