East Ridge Development: Built Fast to Last
In Boynton Beach, Florida, Bond Building Systems developed and built the East Ridge Development. The entire subdivision—30 homes in all—was constructed using only one set of steel beams. It took about one week to complete the entire shell for each house.
The proprietary Bond system is based on shotcrete, a sprayed concrete, to form walls of buildings, and includes a reusable beam placed at the top of each wall to hold reinforcement and tie-down straps in place during shotcrete placement. The beam also forms a clean top edge of the building. This building system is so straightforward that it can be learned quickly and does not require skilled labor, even in other countries where locals were taught how to use it in spite of a language barrier.
To start, the footprint of the structure is formed, rebar is placed, and 2 layers of mesh are attached to the vertical rebar. The concrete floor is placed, securing the reinforcement. After window and door openings are cut into wall panels with torches, shotcreting proceeds from the inside to the outside. Screeds are used to strike off the excess concrete and form the wall faces. This particular system does not contain insulation, but that can be added before finishes are applied. See a description of insulation strategies for shotcrete systems.
At 1,315 square feet each, the East Ridge homes are modest and offer good value. All of them pre-sold, indicating that purchasers liked what they saw—and what they couldn’t see. What they saw was solid housing with an upscale appearance and quality finishes throughout, including paver driveways and patios. What they couldn’t see, but certainly valued, was that each home is resistant to hurricanes and earthquakes.
East Ridge has been recognized as a significant enhancement to the Boynton Beach community. With its hot, humid climate, Florida is one of the top states for concrete home building, because unlike wood and steel, concrete does not rot or corrode.