July Announcements & Newsletter
Announcement StoneBilt Concepts would like to annou... Read More
Colorado College Cutler Hall
Recently officials at Colorado College in Colorado... Read More
Laying Pavers on Existing Concrete Pavement
We are frequently asked if our wet-cast concrete p... Read More
Release Date: 29-Apr-2010
In early 2010 StoneBilt Concepts® introduced the Lock+Load retaining wall to their growing lineup of architectural precast concrete products. Lock+Load’s innovative design and quarried stone appearance are a natural compliment to StoneBilt’s line of concrete paving slabs.
“We already had a great line of easy to install paving slabs that emulate various natural stone textures. The Lock+Load wall also has a great natural stone appearance, and the engineering behind it is different than many other wall systems. This system will provide a very attractive and technically sound alternative to other options in our market,” said Dion DeMeyer, Sales and Marketing Manager for StoneBilt Concepts.
Lock+Load is not new to the retaining wall industry. It was developed in Vancouver B.C. and has been used successfully across the world in a variety of applications, including large commercial developments, DOT applications, grade separations for rail roads, residential development and many others.
Lock+Load is a mechanically stabilized earth (MSE) wall system. The wall module contains two parts; a 3.5 square foot face panel, and a 27-inch deep soil interactive counterfort. The wall modules provide many advantages to other systems available today. The panels do not stack on one another like typical segmental block systems. Instead the panels are independently anchored into the compacted soil by the counterfort. This system is a unique when compared to modular block systems in that it actually requires complete soil compaction all the way to back of the face panel, thus eliminating the differential settlement that often occurs in many other retaining walls.
Lock+Load is a wet cast concrete retaining wall system. Wet casting provides the manufacturer the opportunity to create a highly detailed architectural finish (in standard gray or a variety of colors) and impressive durability. With a minimum 5500 psi compressive strength and air entrainment, Lock+Load resists deterioration due to freeze thaw cycles that are prevalent in the mountain region.
“We are excited to bring this technology to our area,” DeMeyer said. “This wall has been used successfully in a number of areas, and we see a lot of great potential for it here in our part of the world.”
For more information, please click here.
Recently StoneBilt Concepts® architectural paving slabs were chosen as the material to cover a median near the intersection of East 1st Avenue and Lafayette Street near the Denver Country Club, just west of the Cherry Creek North Shopping District.
The 12”x12” Rustic Red Sandstone paving slabs were wet set on a bed of concrete by Fasick Concrete, Inc. Fasick used a basic stacked stone pattern with 1” joints between the stones. Typically these joints would be filled with mortar. In this case polymeric sand was swept between the joints after concrete bed had cured. Water was applied to the polymeric sand and allowed to set up to form a solid joint. This method allows the installer to complete the job efficiently and does not require specialized labor.
When making a choice of material to use in a roadway median, a city has many factors to consider. Aesthetics, cost, ease of installation, durability and maintenance are all very high on that list. StoneBilt Concepts provides products that are a natural fit when addressing all of these factors.
The realistic appearance of the rustic red sandstone paving slabs makes them hard to distinguish from natural stone at a fraction of the cost. However, because they are man made these slabs are consistent in their dimensions and easy to install. The wet cast concrete tests at 9,000 psi or better, and is resistant to repeated freeze thaw cycles inherent to the local climate. While this material provides a median that will be relatively maintenance free, the easy availability and consistent dimensions and colors of the slabs make any necessary maintenance easy to perform.
For more information about StoneBilt Concepts hardscape products please click here.
Since its inception in 1998, the USGBC’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) has grown to encompass over fourteen thousand projects in the US and thirty other countries. It is used widely in the building and development world as a “green” accreditation program and is gradually becoming a household name. Many folks see LEED emblems hung in buildings, declaring that development as “Certified,” “Silver,” “Gold” or even “Platinum.”
StoneBilt Concepts®’ hardscaping products can help a project reach these LEED statuses in three areas: (1) Sustainable Sites, Stormwater Design, (2) Sustainable Sites, Heat Island Effect and (3) Materials and Resources, Regional Materials.
Sustainable Sites, Stormwater Design
Water use across the country is receiving a great amount of consideration and much of that attention is in the interrelated area of clean water and stormwater management. The USGBC addresses this issue in its Sustainable Sites Stormwater Design Quantity Control (SS 6.1) and Stormwater Design Quality Control (SS 6.2). Both sections speak to “pervious pavement” as a strategy for resolving the concern of disrupted natural hydrology and pollution of natural water flows. Of the available types of pervious pavements, permeable concrete and permeable asphalt have issues with integrity and longevity. However, a permeable paver system is gaining ground as the number one pervious pavement. It is durable, reliable and even aesthetically pleasing. Many consider it to be the best choice and value. Indeed, municipalities like Chicago are paving miles of alleyways and acres of parking lots with a permeable paver system.
StoneBilt Concepts’ paving slabs can be arranged in a permeable pavement manner by spacing the joints wider and filling both those joints and the underlying courses with fractured and washed aggregate. This “open graded” system reduces stormwater run–off by promoting on–site infiltration and reducing contaminants, thereby satisfying the above SS sections for a total of two LEED points.
Sustainable Sites, Heat Island Effect
It has been found that urban/suburban areas can be warmer than their surrounding environment. This is partly due to the building materials used in these more densely populated areas and their low heat reflectivity and low heat emittance. Essentially, the sun is warming these areas unnaturally, thereby impacting microclimates and human and wildlife habitats as a whole. This phenomenon is known as the “heat–island effect.”
The USGBC speaks to this matter in two categories: Sustainable Sites Heat Island Effect, Non–Roof (SS 7.1) and Roof (SS 7.2). One strategy offered to aid in diminishing the effect of this heat island event is the use of a permeable pavement system as it has an evaporative, cooling effect. Another approach is the use of high–albedo materials, which are essentially light–colored building products that will reflect the sun’s rays better than darker colored material and will contain less heat (to emit) once that heat source is removed.
Both reflectivity and emittance are scored by the USGBC in their “Solar Reflective Index” (SRI) formula. Anything equal to or greater than twenty–nine may have some LEED points associated with it in this Sustainable Sites category.
StoneBilt Concepts has had its Architectural Paving Slabs tested and measured for this Solar Reflective Index and of the nine standard colors, four passed (Light Travertine, Dark Travertine, Light Buff Sandstone and Old World Limestone). Thus, on any roof application (pedestal) or any non–roof use (sand, permeable or mortar set), StoneBilt Concepts’ wet–cast concrete pavers may aid in the score of two LEED points in the Heat Island Effect category.
Please note that an advantage in the use of StoneBilt Concepts’ slabs is the look–and–feel of natural stone at a more affordable price point; with the use of these slabs comes cost–savings in both material and labor. For example, a roof–top may see a very affordable Travertine surface and score significantly in its SRI value. Additionally, StoneBilt Concepts offers custom sized pavers and custom colors and will be happy to offer consultancy in the design process.
Materials and Resources, Regional Materials
A project may have a good number of materials in its construction. The cumulative environmental impacts of transporting these objects may be great if significant portions are not extracted and manufactured close to the jobsite.
The USGBC aims to address this concern under Materials and Resources Regional Materials (MR 5) which delivers points to any material that is harvested and produced within five hundred miles to a project site.
StoneBilt Concepts’ hardscape products, manufactured in the Denver metro area (Commerce City), have significant portions of these “local materials” if the project is within five hundred miles from our plant. Indeed, over eighty percent of StoneBilt Concepts’ Architectural Slab materials (by weight) are within a five hundred mile radius from our plant.
For more information, including exact percentages of local materials and precise Solar Reflective Index scoring, please click here.