Architects and Precast Concrete: What We Do

The list of industries that benefit from — and therefore champion — the production of precast concrete is long and varied. The influence that precast concrete has on these industries and on those employed within those industries spreads far and wide indeed. One illustrative example of this partnership is that of precast concrete and architects.

So welcome to another edition of “What We Do,” where we provide some context and some detail into our relationship with various sectors of the project planning, construction, and building trades.

We all have our place in the timeline (and the assembly lines, if you will) of commercial, residential, and government construction projects. For Columbia Precast Products, our place is typically within the buried infrastructure portion of the projects.

But as we’ll see, our impact and that of the customizable and reproducible precast concrete forms that we manufacture every day stretches far and wide, not to mention high and low.

When architects and designers get down to business, they must foresee and plan for construction efficiencies throughout the drafting process. They are often restricted in what’s possible by governmental, municipal, and environmental regulations.

That’s just one reason why precast concrete forms are so widely utilized during the construction of new infrastructure projects. They are durable, reliable, and they last for decades with little to no maintenance.

Architects and Concrete

It can’t be overstated how much precast concrete has changed the game when it comes to the types of planning dreams and efficiency goals that architects are able to notate in their blueprints.

Consider the wide range of products available from Columbia Precast Concrete. Architects and engineers consider this material when planning their projects. They can plan the implementation and installation of a number of customizable and reproducible precast concrete forms.

Some examples:

  • Panel Vaults
  • Catch Basins
  • Precast Drainage Inlets
  • Parking Curbs
  • Wet Wells
  • Drywells
  • Head Walls
  • Electrical Vaults
  • Concrete Grease Interceptors
  • Oil/water Separators
  • Precast Footings
  • Box Culverts
  • Precast Wing Walls
  • Precast Concrete Pedestrian Bridge

Thus we can see that when it comes to architects, designers, and precast concrete, there are a number of useful, durable, eco-friendly, and virtually maintenance-free tools in their toolbox.

Architectural Forms

As we’ve written about before, architectural precast concrete is a modern term. But it didn’t take long for architects to understand and realize how perfect precast concrete is as a building material.

Consider an assessment from the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute (PCI): “The use of color, form, and texture allows for unlimited creativity that evokes the beautiful natural expression of the material. The aesthetic appearance of architectural precast concrete is infinite. With the choice of aggregates, form liners, pigments, and textures, the architect can achieve a variety of design objectives.”

In other words (although the PCI’s words are perfectly stated), precast concrete allows architects a flexibility of both planning and design that encourages innovation and imagination.

Whether it’s fire resistance, green construction codes, office buildings with earth tones, exposed aggregate, and other examples of aesthetic versatility, architectural precast, panels, vaults, and more add to a wide-ranging, functional palette.

Architects and precast concrete: a match made in heaven? Well, we might not go that far. But we can and do work with members of the architecture industry to turn dreams into concrete reality.

For high-rises and high-quality buried infrastructure; long-term, cost-saving building systems; precast concrete walls, panels, and more, Columbia Precast Concrete builds and delivers for you.

It’s what we do.