Sustainable, high-performance design with natural stone

Sustainable, high-performance building continues to be the desired model for design, construction, and operations in both the public and private sector. Initially, the movement was a response to the 2005 Energy Policy Act, which set the standards to mean “a building that integrates and optimizes all major high-performance building...
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Set Your SITES: What to know about the new rating system

SITES is a globally sustainable rating system used by landscape architects, designers, engineers, architects, developers, and policy-makers to align land development and management with innovative sustainable design. After several years of beta testing, version SITES v2 was released last year. Ever since then, projects throughout the United States, Canada,...
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The new slip resistance requirements in IBC

Specifying flooring that will not be slippery even when it can get wet or otherwise lubricated in use is critical for safety purposes. The 2012 International Building Code (IBC) lays out slip resistance, but there are weaknesses with the requirements—not least of all in that it places a burden...
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Diverse finishes maximize granite’s potential

Well-known for its beauty and durability, granite offers numerous design benefits. However, a less familiar advantage is its versatility—particularly when multiple finishes are applied. Today, design teams are selecting one granite type, choosing several finishes, and achieving great variety, texture, and appeal.
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Maintaining critical road, rail, and bridge infrastructure

A recent 60 Minutes episode, “Falling Apart,” noted America’s roads, bridges, airports, and rail lines are outdated, neglected, and need to be fixed. The segment goes on to state, “nearly 70,000 bridges in America—one out of every nine—is considered to be structurally deficient.” Indeed, according to the American Society...
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What’s Wrong With My Precast Concrete Garage?

Precast double-tee construction has become a dominant method for building parking garages in North America. The double-tee beam deck system of this construction type provides a finished wearing surface, supports vehicle loading, and forms an integral part of the lateral force-resisting system. However, maintenance and repair of deck connections...
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More on duplex stainless steel and bridges

In the May 2015 issue of The Construction Specifier, Catherine Houska, CSI, discussed how duplex stainless steels are being specified for numerous structural applications. This complementary web piece looks at a few additional projects from around the world that make use of this versatile material’s attributes.
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Duplex Stainless Steel Revolutionizes Structural Design

Architectural and engineering firms are increasingly exploring stainless steel’s possibilities as a structural material as new research, structural codes, and design guides become available. Most designs have used the familiar Types 304L or 316L alloys from the austenitic family of stainless steels, but for all but the lightest sections,...
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Bearing Pad Durability in Precast Concrete Garages

Bearing pads are used widely in precast concrete parking garages. They function as buffers between the separate concrete members to prevent damage and facilitate movement (much like cartilage between bones at joints). Bearing pads should last for the design life of the structure, but need to be replaced when...
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