Last week's 41st annual World of Concrete–the largest in six years–is being called a success. A total of 55,779 attendees registered and more than 4,445 companies exhibited. Whether or not you made it out to Las Vegas, here are the five key lessons that we took away from the event.
1. Go green with PLC. This year's Triad Awards focused on projects employing portland limestone cement (PLC). As sustainability becomes an even greater priority, the use of PLC is expanding, with positive results for both the environment and the quality of the concrete.
2. Concrete is an art, not a science. In his education sessions on concrete basics, Jeff Groom, PE, the Mariana Islands Regional Office Manager for GHD Inc., an international consulting engineering firm, noted this idea several times. In other words, it's worth remembering that just because a certain concrete mix worked on past projects does not mean it's going to be right in the future. Tiny tweaks can make a big difference.
3. There's always wiggle room. By exploring the range in your concrete specs, you may be able to produce some unique results. This was one way that 2015 Triad Award for Excellence honorees were able to take their projects above and beyond, representatives noted at the Building Successful Public Projects Through Innovation, Sustainability and Leadership luncheon, held Feb. 5.
4. Pride in the trades, and opportunity, is alive and well. A recent NPR story suggested that there's good reason for millennials coming out of high school to consider a career in the trades. Just a few hours at World of Concrete and it's clear that there's plenty of room for new talent, and a host of enthusiastic veterans. Want more proof, check out some of the social media buzz.
5. Innovation is happening on both large and small scale. The 2015 WOC covered more than 675,000 net square feet of space, an increase of more than 100,000 net square feet from 2014. Here are the most-innovative products.