Benevolent Business

Industry producers are adding charitable or nonprofit activities to an already full schedule. This fall brought a bumper crop of projects involving local

Industry producers are adding charitable or nonprofit activities to an already full schedule. This fall brought a bumper crop of projects involving local producers or state and national groups.


Noblesville, Ind., was the site of a mid-September joint effort by the Hamilton County chapter of Habitat for Humanity, the Insulating Concrete Form Association (ICFA) and the Indiana Ready Mixed Concrete Association (IRMCA) to build a 1,050-sq.-ft. house using insulating concrete forms. The project Û providing a new residence for the four-member Giacoma family Û was sponsored in part by ICFA and IRMCA members who provided forms and ready mixed necessary to construct the home’s exterior walls. Working under the manufacturer’s supervision, Habitat volunteers stacked the ICF forms; six days later, the exterior walls were filled with concrete supplied by Irving Materials‘ Greenfield, Ind., plant and Indianapolis-based Southside Ready Mix.

In 2003, nearly 50,000 U.S. homes Û 4 percent of all single-family residences nationwide Û were constructed using ICFs for exterior walls. Although ICF homes typically have been built in upper- and middle-income buyer ranges, ICFA finds a growing number of Habitat for Humanity affiliates and other low-income housing providers recognizing insulating form methods’ energy-efficiency and durability benefits.


In Tyler, Texas, about an hour east of Dallas, Transit Mix Concrete and Materials donated ready mixed loads and staff resources for an early-October competition challenging participants to complete a 1,650-sq.-ft. home Û requiring 2,160 sq. ft. of slab on grade Û in under two and half hours. Breaking a 1984 record of 2 hours and 53 minutes set in San Diego, the winners built a three-bedroom, two-bath house with two-car garage in 2 hours, 52 minutes and 29 seconds.

A significant factor in the feat was a high-performance mix supplied by Transit Mix, a division of Dallas-based Trinity Industries. Partnering with its chemical admixtures supplier, Degussa Admixtures, the producer was able to provide a concrete mix that would reach initial set in 22 minutes. We poured and placed 47 yards of concrete in less than five minutes, reports Transit Mix’s Dick Schilhab, vice president, East Texas. Because it was self-consolidating concrete, all the finishers had to do was screed off the concrete surface for a perfect finish, he adds. The amazing part was that we were walking on it 20 minutes later.

To achieve the fast set, Transit Mix used a slightly modified version of Degussa Admixtures’ 4_4 Concrete technology, a combination of admixtures and concrete materials used in rapid-setting highway and airport-repair applications. The 4_4 formula incorporates one of the company’s Glenium polycarboxylate admixtures, plus Pozzolith and Delvo agents, to yield a mix developing a vehicular-load-ready, 400-psi flexural strength in four hours. Modifications to the design reduced setting time to less than ? of the original.

The Two Hour House project was organized by the Tyler Area Builders Association, a nonprofit coalition of construction industry companies in the east Texas market. In addition to Transit Mix, thousands of volunteers and several companies donated time, knowledge, materials and funding for the competition. With construction complete, worthy causes in the Tyler area stand to receive 100 percent of the profits when the house is sold.


In Bountiful, Utah, ready mixed producer Jack B. Parson Companies supplied 27 truckloads of high early strength concrete for a project featured on the Oct. 9 episode of ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. The former 2,000-sq.-ft., 60-year-old Harrison residence was leveled to its foundation and a 4,000-sq.-ft., two-story house (valued at about $360,000) was built Û all in five days. Other project suppliers included JBP’s sister Oldcastle operations, Staker & Companies, providing road base and fill products for the home; and, Amcor Masonry Products, whose Versa-Lok segmental retaining wall units were used to level, retain, and construct garden boxes in the new back yard.

General contractor Okland Construction Co. challenged JBP to deliver fast-setting concrete (4,000 psi in 12 hours) to ensure the project started on schedule. A special mix for the integral footings and floors was designed, tested, refined, and retested to meet Okland’s needs. The reinforced mix was dispatched from a central mix located approximately 15 minutes from the project site. When trucks arrived on site, admixtures were added to accelerate the concrete set time.


The 2005 season premiere episode of ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition saw Quikrete Cos. supply professional grade packaged concrete and sealant to aid in the transformation of a Clarksville, Tenn., residence. Sixty-four 50-lb. bags of Fast-Setting Concrete Mix were used in setting fence posts to frame the backyard area. In addition, 25 gallons of Quikrete Acrylic Concrete Sealer were applied to the backyard flagstone as a protective coating and semi-gloss finish.

Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete Mix is formulated with specialty cements and designed to set within approximately 20 to 40 minutes. The quick-hardening mix allowed the show’s crew to complete four months’ work in seven days. The Professional Grade Sealant provided a water-resistant clear coating for the stone walkway, increasing the flagstones’ longevity and creating a sheen that will last for years. Both products require no maintenance, enabling the Nashville family to enjoy their new home with reduced upkeep.



Habitat for Humanity, Hamilton County
Insulating Concrete Form Association
Indiana Concrete Homes Council
Indiana Ready Mixed Concrete Association
American Polysteel, LLC
Portland Cement Association
Essroc Cement
Irving Materials, Inc.
Southside Ready Mix Concrete
Simpson Strong-Tie
Builder’s Concrete & Supply