Concrete is the most widely consumed substance after water in the world, and life without it would be unimaginable. Using reinforced concrete elements in construction ensures several advantages. The topic is introduced by the sales director of E-Betoonelement Aare Pärna and commented on by the architect at Nord Project AS Andres Kariste and the director of engineering at AS TTP Herki Narusk.

"Thanks to the high demands on thermal insulation and energy efficiency for modern houses, for the reinforced concrete you can be assured."

1. Speed both on the construction site and in terms of deadlines. Unlike in case of construction using single-layer blocks that need to be externally finished and insulated separately, triple-layer facade elements are assembled at the site fully compact. The sandwich panels consist of two reinforced concrete layers and the insulation between them, and for example, the combination of the building box took, for example, a couple of months for apartment buildings with the 14th floor of Mustamäe Pööris street, which is shorter for private houses.
Not less important is the fact that since the finished panels are manufactured as a result of factory-controlled processes, slipping deadlines will disappear and the time spent on building completion can be accurately set on the calendar, regardless of the changing weather conditions.

Pöörise residential buildings

2. Affordable construction material. High quality as a complete solution may not always mean a high price, because concrete as a material is relatively affordable. Construction with elements means smaller labour costs in comparison to, for example, work carried out by a bricklayer. Thanks to durability and low maintenance costs, the extra charge is also due to the amount saved in long-term operation. E-Betoonelement mostly uses local raw materials for the production of concrete.

3. Optimised technology BIM that allows architects to plan feedthroughs, ventilation ducts and utility lines in the 3D model with the actual dimensions already in the design stage. In the case of all details and drawers, there are links to see, so there is no surprise on the construction site that something is not in place. In this case, consideration should be given to the dimensioning of panels with some factors, because of the large dimensions for both transport and assembly.

4. Long-lasting. Concrete was manufactured already in Ancient Egypt and China where it was used for building structures that we can bear witness to even today. Concrete by its very nature is extremely durable and many next generation can operate in a building that you build in accordance with modern technologies.

5. Beautiful and environmentally friendly. According to Andres Kariste, architect of Nord Project AS, the panels are no longer noisome gray in appearance. "The surface of the concrete can be printed or patched on the surface of the concrete, for example, with a ferrous sulfate for Palmse's mechanical workshop. The use of patina offers eye-catching color schemes: brownies, bluish, copper scars, lively shades. Also, ceramic tiles, natural stone, clad brick patterns can be placed on the outside of the factory. Concrete is already in the process of hardening, with its own tone and a stylish monochrome, but it still remains possible to use colored concrete. By creating an interesting exterior to the building, the client has a fairly wide gamut of land, and always has the opportunity to come up with the bolder innovations offered by the architect, "says the architect.
Environmentally-friendly local raw materials such as crushed stone, sand, cement keep the interference to environment as little as possible. In addition, concrete is almost 100% recyclable!

Palmse Mechanics Chamber

6. Healthy – concrete is a relatively steamtight material, but the small amount of humidity penetrating the structure is ventilated out of the insulation through small ventilation channels, which prevents mould and maintains heat. The indoor air quality and humidity will keep the elemental house at a human-friendly level. There is no need for surface treatment with fungi- or insect control.

7. The apartment building is sure - safe and fireproof. The stable structure and physical properties of reinforced concrete protect the building and the inhabitants from possible natural disasters such as hurricanes or shock-explosions. Most of the protective structures built into the difficult areas are made from this material in order to provide maximum protection. In our conditions, the architect Kariste brings out the maintenance and vandal-proof exterior: "It is good and easy to rub the dirt with a pressure washer, which is risky for a lightweight wall, because the pressure can take away the coating."
For the forces of nature -hangs on for storms, even for floods for a short time, and the water can not enter the structures in the case of saddles. Everyone knows that the concrete is not burning: the fire-resistance of the building can be raised for two hours and more - the supporting structure hangs on.

8. Noise and heat insulation. Concrete has excellent ability to suppress noise. The more massive the material is, the more silent it is: the average reinforced concrete exterior wall element reduces the noise level to 60 dB, while the lightweight is only 30 dB. In addition to sound insulation, the concrete offers an equally good thermal insulation, keeping the temperature stable for both cold and warm weather. The large glass facades are no longer a topic today, architect Andres Kariste emphasizes energy efficiency: "Due to the high thermal and energy requirements of today's houses, for reinforced concrete you can be assured. Due to its relatively high mass, it operates as a battery, keeping a stable indoor climate. "

See how the first houses of Pöörise residential area were made of concrete elements!