Fiber reinforced concrete slabs have been around for a while, but they are just starting to get popular. While the old fashioned way of mixing and pouring concrete around rebar sounds like a logical solution to building structures, it isn’t very efficient when it comes to saving time or money. It isn’t just savings that fiber reinforced concrete provides though. Many engineers argue that this kind of solution provides a better final product too.
A great example is happening right now in Bellevue, Washington. A building that houses luxury condos, a hotel, dining and even retail space was constructed with gigantic slabs of fiber reinforced concrete.Usually, these slabs require thousands of dollars worth of rebar, but not this time around.
As more buildings start utilizing these unique materials, many engineers and contractors are hoping the technology and access becomes more available. Matthew Roblez, S.E., SECB here at McNeil Engineering had this to say about fiber reinforced concrete.
“I have been specifying fiber reinforced concrete in slabs for many reasons. The most prominent is much like this article states, the savings in labor and steel. In addition to this, it has been my experience in my 20 plus year career, that one gets a better product using fibrous reinforcement over traditional steel. Anyone out there who is looking at replacing a driveway or a slab should definitely use fibrous reinforcing. Fibrous reinforced concrete is highly overlooked, especially in residential slabs. I am happy to see that a “large” project is finally having fibrous reinforced concrete realize its potential. “
It will be interesting to see if this is the beginning of a new trend, but only time will tell. Would you consider using fiber reinforced concrete on your next project? Why or why not? Sound off on our Facebook page and let us know your thoughts.