Concrete Sustainability Hub, MIT, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Concrete is fundamental to modern civilization; this demands an open discussion of its impact. For facilitating this discussion, we commend The Guardian. However, the article Concrete: the most destructive material on Earth fails to adequately consider concrete’s benefits.
First and foremost, concrete enables prosperity. Through its affordability and availability, concrete creates the infrastructure that has allowed millions to live safe, sanitary, and prosperous lives.
While it is easy for wealthy countries who have benefited from concrete to now condemn it, concrete remains a vital means of social and economic transformation for developing nations. …
By: Jeremy Gregory, Executive Director, Concrete Sustainability Hub; Research Scientist, MIT Civil and Environmental Engineering
Hurricanes and high winds will always be a risk to coastal areas like Florida and Georgia, and Hurricane Michael was a devastating example of this unfortunate reality. Though the Atlantic coast of Florida has historically strong building codes to mitigate weather damage, the Panhandle area’s building codes are significantly less robust. As the Panhandle was hit with its first major storm in recent history, the building codes were a major reason why so few homes were left standing in the area.
Having spent 20 years focusing on sustainable architecture, creating green homes and buildings, and studying the effects buildings have on our environment, I was surprised to read Phil Bernstein’s recent article regarding mass timber and the supposed environmental benefits of its use. I studied at Yale under Professor Bernstein, and I have long admired his enthusiasm for and dedication to important issues related to the practice of architecture. So it is with all respect and appreciation for his work that I am compelled to offer an alternate viewpoint on mass timber.
Simply stated, cross laminated timber is not an effective…
We’d argue there’s nothing more important than keeping our children and our communities safe. That’s why ICFs are quickly setting the trend when it comes to new school construction. You’d be hard pressed to find a building technique that’s stronger, safer or easier to use than Insulated Concrete Forms (ICFs). Read about the five ways ICFs make the grade:
This hurricane season has been an unforgettable one for millions of families along the Gulf Coast and Southeast Atlantic states. Many people lost their homes, belongings and their lives.
Unfortunately, these natural disasters will not be the last to hit these vulnerable areas. But we can be better prepared for the future in order to save lives and minimize damage to these communities by using the most resilient building materials.
Concrete can withstand storms and other natural disasters better than any other building material. …
A recent article by Renee Loth in the Boston Globe tells us that we “shouldn’t give up” on building with wood. Oh, really? We shouldn’t ‘give up’ on a material that’s contributed to countless fires, reduced homes and businesses to mere ashes and cost lives across the U.S.? We shouldn’t ‘give up’ on a material that’s so unstable it often burns to the ground before construction is even completed?
This isn’t just a flimsy argument; it’s a dangerous one that puts our communities, our citizens, and safety officials at risk. It minimizes the importance of non-combustible materials, like steel and…
Concrete is being used in some of the most innovative designs around the world. It’s smart. It’s bold. And the only thing it requires is a limitless imagination. If you haven’t experienced the beauty of concrete, it might be time to take a look.
Discussion Examined Costs and Benefits of Building with Resiliency
Last week, Build with Strength was joined by Dr. Jeremy Gregory, Executive Director of the Concrete Sustainability Hub at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, for an informative discussion designed specifically for reporters, bloggers and industry professionals on recent MIT research quantifying the costs and benefits of hazard mitigation in construction. A video of the presentation can be found here.
The conversation revolved around MIT’s Break-Even Hazard Mitigation Metric, an approach that can assist designers, developers and architects looking to build and re-build with resiliency in mind, specifically as it relates to…
Hurricane Matthew caused more than $10 billion in damage across the southeastern U.S. Now, the recovery begins — a monumental effort that could have been minimized by using disaster-proof construction techniques upfront. In fact, MIT research shows that investing in hazard mitigation actually saves money in the long run. Here’s how.
When a natural disaster strikes, it is too late to think about the strength of the construction materials with which you chose to build with. Builders and developers need to decide on the front end to build with strength and choose stronger construction materials like concrete to keep building occupants safe.
On September 30, 2016, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) released Public Assistance Minimum Standards Policy FP-104–009–4 aimed at establishing minimum standards for public assistance projects in order to promote resiliency and reduce risk.
According to the policy, when using public assistance funds to repair, replace or construct buildings…
WE ARE CONCRETE STRONG. Build with Strength is a coalition of the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association.