Market Intelligence

PCA Releases Summer State Forecasts

Regional Slide framed 092815PCA maintains a favorable outlook for cement consumption growth in 2016 as underlying fundamentals continue to improve.

Recently released summer 2015 state forecasts expect the strongest rates of cement consumption expansion to occur in the West with year-over-year growth of 8.2 percent next year. The South (6.3 percent) and Northeast (6.2 percent) are expected to expand in line with national averages for 2016. The Midwest (5.3 percent), weighed down by weak commodity prices, is expected to grow at a sub-national rate. 

Regions with high oil drilling and exploration exposure are expected to experience softness as some shorter time-lined projects such as those in the residential and commercial sectors are held back on uncertainty surrounding oil prices. For this reason, as well as the matured state of recovery in the interior United States, the West North Central is expected to grow at a tempered pace (4.2 percent) followed by the West South Central (4.4 percent). Growth in the Middle Atlantics (6.3 percent), East North Central (5.8 percent) and New England (5.7 percent) are expected to be in line with national averages. The Pacific (8.2 percent), Mountain (8.2 percent) and South Atlantic (8.1 percent) divisions are expected to lead growth due to favorable economic and demographic trends which continue to propel strong recoveries in commercial and residential construction activity.

Contact Dave Zwicke

Building and Codes

Performance-Based Design: Future of Building Codes

Performance-based design (PPD) has been a resource for mankind dating back to 1750 BCE. Performance-based design can be simple – find a use for state-of-the-art engineering technologies, enhance the performance for the needs of the owner, and for the most affordable design to demonstrate code compliance.

In an article, appearing in this month’s Structure Magazine, Steve Szoke, P.E., PCA’s senior director, codes and standards, notes that “the National Institute for Standards and Technology is in the final development stages of the Community Resilience Planning Guide which proposes new concepts for codes and standards related to the design of building and other infrastructure components. Another strategy could be related to transparency of consequences to owners and communities should a disaster occur. This might be in the form of multiple performance levels within each risk category to better allow owners and communities to select the appropriate performance levels.”

PCA has been proactive on the issue, offering High Performance Building Requirements for Sustainability (HPBRS), which recommends improved design to decrease the amount of repair and replacement after any disaster. 

Read more at Think Harder. Blog

Contact Steve Szoke

Education and Training

Speakers Wanted for CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2017

Planning is underway for CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2017 slated for March 7-11, 2017.  An  international gathering place for the construction industries, the event is held every three years. The exposition showcase the latest equipment products, services, and technologies.

PCA is soliciting potential speakers in the concrete track to streamline the process. Proposed seminar program sessions will be reviewed by the CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2017 Education Committee and will be evaluated based on the quality and timeliness of the topic. Please submit topic areas by October 30, 2015.

Contact Michelle Wilson


Iowa Hosts First International Ultra-High Performance Concrete Symposium

UHPC_con_FramedWith its proximity to ultra-high performance concrete (UHPC) projects, Des Moines, Iowa, was selected as the location for the First International Interactive Symposium on Ultra-High Performance Concrete, July 18-20, 2016. UHPC is one of the major breakthroughs in concrete technology in the last two centuries. The symposium unites people, disciplines, and societies to promote the use of UHPC and learn how to do it better.

The deadline for abstract submission is October 1, 2015. All submitted abstracts and papers will be peer-reviewed by the international scientific advisory committee of more than 50 UHPC educators and practitioners. Accepted papers will be included in the conference and authors will present their contributions at the event.

Contact Steve Kosmatka

Education and Training

PCA Offers Design and Control of Concrete Mixtures Course

PCA’s publication Design and Control of Concrete Mixtures is the foundation for a concrete industry course offered October 5-8, 2015 on the PCA campus.

The course reflects the latest advances in concrete technology. Covered will be materials, properties of concrete, mix design, placement, and testing. It is especially useful for concrete industry personnel who need fundamental yet practical concrete knowledge and combines classroom instruction, lab demonstrations, and hands-on training to help employees meet customer needs.

For more information, go to the PCA website.

Contact Michelle Wilson

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