Sources: National Ready Mixed Concrete Association, Silver Spring, Md.; CP staff
NRMCA capped its 2016 Convention unveiling “Build with Strength,” a multi-million dollar, coordinated industry campaign to better educate the design, construction and building code communities about the benefits of concrete, especially in the low- to mid-rise sector.
“We are proud to launch a first of its kind program for the concrete industry,” outgoing NRMCA Chairman and CalPortland Co. CEO Allen Hamblen told members at the San Diego gathering. “It’s not only going to support our members, their businesses, and the hard-working men and women of the concrete industry, but I firmly believe that the education campaign we are embarking on will lead to stronger, more durable construction that will save lives while cutting cost over time.”
The program is based off of a significant NRMCA research investment to better understand the motivations behind the use of certain construction materials. Research showed that a great majority of the design/build community is favorable to concrete construction because of attributes like strength, durability and ease of use. However, certain misconceptions about cost and environmental impact often lead decision makers to choose less safe building materials such as wood and wood products.
“All of us in the concrete industry know we offer a superior construction product that delivers safety, durability and strength to designers, architects, builders, investors and consumers,” said NRMCA President Robert Garbini. “This campaign is about spreading that message to the audiences that are either unaware of or reluctant to embrace concrete as the standard bearer of durability.”
The campaign relies on an unprecedented communications strategy that includes the April 12 launch of the Build with Strength-branded web site, plus products and initiatives over the next year: video content; multi-city media tour; rapid response capabilities; advertising; social media properties; and, stakeholder engagement opportunities. Additionally, the campaign is designed to drive industry and project decision makers to resources such as webinars and live seminars for technical support and design assistance while also building an advocacy network that will support concrete’s position in building codes, standards and rating systems at the state and local level. The campaign has already been activated in Washington State and Maryland, where state legislatures were considering legislation that would have greatly impacted the construction materials market.
“With Build with Strength we have an opportunity to reenergize the concrete industry and better position concrete products in the construction marketplace,” affirms 2016 NRMCA Chairman Ted Chandler, president of Burlington, N.C.-based Chandler Concrete Co., Inc. “Given the type of support we have received thus far I have no doubt it will serve as a united voice reminding people inside and outside of the industry that no product is as safe, strong or durable as ready mixed concrete.”