If you want to quickly erect a commercial building in an urban setting, material loads are a critical consideration. Running high quantities of trucks in urban areas comes with a high cost, both for the vehicles and staff, as well as for traffic management.
It also comes with a health and safety risk for staff and the public. Between 2003 and 2013, 65 people died due to collisions with construction vehicles. In a sector that has an accident rate twice as high as the average for all industries, reducing material shipments and running construction sites efficiently can protect human lives as well as budgets.
This makes it useful to explore ways of building offices and stores that don't require the transportation of large quantities of raw materials and which limit the length of construction projects. Here are three technical methods that can help to achieve that.
Rely on Steel for Your Internal Frame
As far as the frame of your building is concerned, the most efficient material is steel. That's because steel structures are lighter than those made predominantly from concrete, which means that less concrete is required for the foundations of the building.
Another great advantage of using steel is speed. Steel frames can be assembled offsite and erected in a few days, reducing the need for truck shipments over extended periods. The faster your commercial structure can be built, the less exposure staff and the public will have to vehicle-related hazards.
Install Curtain Walling for Quick Construction and Low Material Loads
Steel frames can also easily be constructed to fit in with other construction techniques like curtain walling, creating a solid internal structure and an attractive surface.
In curtain walling projects, glass frames are stacked and arranged in rows to the desired height. The frames are made from materials that can cope with thermal expansion and building sway, adding strength to the finished building, which could include prestressed concrete or composite panels.
Curtain walling is an excellent way to create the facades of commercial premises without requiring large material loads. Instead of needing trucks full of bricks, cables or concrete, curtain walling radically reduces the need for materials to be shipped to construction sites.
Use Efficient Concreting Processes
Another way to reduce the amount of materials required in a commercial project is to use commercial concreting to create the supporting walls and floors. By using a process known as post-tensioning you can create slimmer, stronger concrete slabs which are more space efficient and use fewer resources.
In this process, specialist concrete contractors lay concrete floors or slabs as normal, using steel cables to add reinforcement. These cables are then pulled towards the edge of the bed as the concrete sets, adding strength to the finished slab.
Commercial concreting is a smart way to use concrete. It allows you to fill in structural gaps around your curtain walling and supplements the role of steel frames, adding strength. Add all three methods together and you can create durable commercial structures at low cost and minimise the need to truck in raw materials at the same time.