Concrete Low Carbon

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Steampacket Place, Geelong

A laneway project, which allowed experimentation with low-carbon concrete without jeopardising costs, aesthetics or strength.

Working with a local concrete supplier who also recycled old concrete and bricks, we experiemented with a few slabs of varying mixes and treatments that would fulfil the aim of a 40 MPa concrete for the roadway, with an off-white, exposed aggregate finish. The mixes had varying quantities of manufactured sand, which is a by-product of crushing old concrete, crushed old concrete used as aggregate in various grades and low-carbon cement, a by-product of steel manufacture. The finished product passed all the tests and is a high quality surface with lovely detail.

Another experiment was porous concrete mixes, which took a bit longer to get the right mixes. Again, working with a local concrete company with the aim of creating an open mix, that would allow water to flow through to sub-base, be strong enough to allow cars to drive over it and be an aesthetic concrete to use in an urban situation. Again we also experimented with the manufactured sand, crushed concrete as aggregate and low-carbon cement. We managed to produce the practical side of the concrete, that was strong enough and allowed water to flow but aesthetically it didn’t work. Unfortunately this was not used in the last laneway but hope to continue experimenting to get it right.

I also looked at alternative reinforcing and through extensive research discovered Eco-reo; a reinforcing manufactured using recycled steel and Polymer Injection Technology. Onesteel manufacture this from their Laverton plant.

Location: Steampacket place, Geelong
Collaboration: Local mix, Aaron McCurdy Concreting
Photography: Tom Leggatt

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