Is a Concrete Building the Right Choice for You?

When having a new commercial building constructed, you may want to consider concrete as a building material, versus steel or wood. Concrete has many advantages and especially for a large, commercial facility; note a few of those here, along with some commonly asked questions about concrete construction so you can discuss this option with your contractor and choose the right building material for your project.

Do the interior walls look like concrete?

Concrete construction doesn't always mean plain concrete walls. Most builders will use a type of insulating concrete form, or CFI; this form comes in dense foam boards. These boards are cut to form long blocks; concrete is then poured or sandwiched between two of these long blocks so that it can set properly. These forms are then left in place so they provide insulation, a vapour barrier, and a surface for nailing. You can then have drywall or another material attached to these forms to create the interior wall and so that the concrete is not left exposed.

Does the concrete settle and shift or crack?

Concrete used to make a commercial building is very durable, and the insulating forms as well as the sealants used outside the building protect the material from absorbing water and moisture. The concrete sections that make up the building are also given some space between them so that they can expand and contract without becoming too close and compact; in turn, they are less likely to crack from not having room for movement.

Also, note that concrete for a building won't need to suffer the weight of a vehicle driving over it, as does concrete used for a driveway! Since it suffers less wear and tear on the surface, you don't typically need to worry about a concrete building suffering cracks and other such damage. The material is also impervious to termites, mould, rust, and other damaging elements that are common with other building materials.

Are there any sites that are not good for concrete construction?

Tilt-up panels are often created for many commercial buildings, and these panels are put into place with a crane. If the terrain is very hilly or difficult to fit the right size crane, this can be a concern. Obstructions for the crane, such as railroad tracks, overhead lines, nearby buildings, ditches, water features, bridges, and the like can also limit the ability of a crane to access the site. Your contractor can note if concrete wouldn't be a good choice for your commercial building site for any of these reasons.

About Me

Laying New Concrete

Hello, my name is Tim and this is my concrete blog. You may think that concrete is pretty boring but I find it really interesting. I don't work as a professional concrete contractor, but last year, I spent a couple of weeks working along with some contractors I hired to lay some new concrete on my drive. Until then, I had always thought that laying concrete was really easy. It is, in fact, a very impressive skill. Having picked up some top concrete laying tips, I decided that I should probably start a blog so I could share them with the rest of the world.

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