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Cheaper, Faster, Better

Zaragon Place – a prime example 


“If it’s not cheaper, faster, better, don’t come to the table” has been the construction industry credo as long as I have been in the masonry business, some 35 years now. And “everyone knows that you can never have all three.” Only two are possible. But, for the last 35 years and long before that, loadbearing masonry has exceeded the cheaper, faster, better to be the cheapest, fastest, best solution to many building types. Yes, all three. And Zaragon Place, a 100,000 sf, 10 story residential building adjacent to U of M with 248 bedrooms and 66 living units above ground floor retail and underground parking demonstrates this.

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Tedesco demands fire code changes in State of the County speech

, Staff Writer, @SteveJanoskiPublished 

HACKENSACK — Bergen County Executive James J. Tedesco III had a straightforward message for state officials Monday: Change the building codes regarding lightweight wood construction, the use of which has been blamed for two massive residential fires in the last three years, including one in Maplewood this month.

Do it, Tedesco said. And do it now.

“We cannot wait any longer, because people are going to die, and buildings will continue to burn to the ground,” said Tedesco, a 41-year Paramus firefighter. “By simply changing a few words and a few sentences, officials can dramatically improve the safety of all those that will occupy units constructed with lightweight wood — and save lives.”

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UA architecture students do their level best

University of Arizona architecture students, from left, Lucy Nielsen and Jared Spear congratulate each other after successfully leveling a block. On Tuesday, groups of students in Ray Barnes’ Building Technology Materials and Methods course designed and constructed their own masonry walls at Superlite Block, 2200 W. Gardner Lane. The groups of four students completed the walls, limited to 32 square feet, with volunteer help from employees of Sun Valley Masonry. The program and partnership with Superlite Block is in its 16th year.

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Restructuring Specifications: Improving stability and durability of structural concrete with ACI 301-16

by Shelby O. Mitchell

What can be done to help specifiers and contractors create the most stable, durable, and resilient concrete structures possible? This challenge inspired the industry professionals responsible for updating an American Concrete Institute (ACI) standard over the summer. (ACI 301-16 is available in print and digital formats at www.concrete.org.)

Every five years, ACI 301, Specifications for Structural Concrete, is updated to complement the newest version of ACI 318, Building Code Requirements for Structural Concrete. (ACI 318-14, Building Code Requirements for Structural Concrete, has been completely reorganized to reflect the designer’s perspective. More details are available at www.concrete.org/tools/ACI318.) During the most recent review cycle, ACI 301 Committee on Specifications for Structural Concrete not only updated technical requirements, but also created a more user-friendly reference specification for nearly all forms of structural concrete.

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