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Acoustic Excellence with Concrete Masonry

The music department at Mesa Community College has a long and established tradition of preparing outstanding musicians and producing celebrated musical performances. Their collective dream was to create a nurturing, educational, and comfortable environment for students that fostered creativity and collaboration and they wanted to do it in a derelict, five-theater movie house adjacent to campus.

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Functional Resilience


Designing with concrete masonry can give buildings a chance to resist storms. Throughout history, nature has impacted the way humans design our communities and buildings. From relatively routine considerations such as water tables and soil properties, to large events such as flooding and tornadoes, natural forces can easily overcome man-made …

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Living in Stone

The owners of this new home along lake Tapps, in Bonney Lake, WA, had a demanding program for Architect Mat Bergman. They wanted a home where they could really live inside and outside most of the year, despite the Seattle-area weather. They wanted the home to be contemporary design, to acknowledge the regional styles and to be rendered in the color palettes and textures of the local natural environment. As the owner of a masonry company, the homeowners also wanted to use masonry, but they wanted it to look like stone.

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John Burroughs School

When John Burroughs School (JBS), an elite college preparatory school in the St. Louis suburb of Ladue, MO, was founded in 1923, masonry was the preponderant material for all structural construction. Over the years, various structural construction systems supplanted that dominance. But when the architect of a new $19 million performing arts center, which was to be located in the middle of existing buildings on the 47.5-acre (19.22-hectare) campus, looked for a building system with the necessary acoustical and structural properties, the structural concrete masonry system won the day.

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A Few Good Materials

41 Area, one of the largest mixed-use sectors of the U.S. Marine Corps Base at Camp Pendleton, CA, has just undergone $133 million of renovations and new construction as part of a major expansion of operations and training facilities for the Marine Units stationed there. In a single contract for three diverse campus projects, Webcor/R.A Burch, San Diego, CA, constructed 18 new buildings; all of them concrete masonry structures.

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Concrete Masonry Offers Fire, Seismic and Blast Protection

  Seeking a 50-year life expectancy, along with a requirement for low-maintenance building materials and structures on base, the Department of Defense relies on loadbearing masonry envelopes for the new buildings on the Marine Corps Base at Camp Pendleton, CA. And with tight site restrictions, the concrete masonry helps reduce …

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Wakefield High School

Concrete masonry was chosen to play several major roles in the new building. community programs and county-based classes. Wakefield first opened its doors in the mid-1950s and in order to continue and expand its educational role, replacing the aging facility made the most sense in terms of sustainability, economics and …

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Atwater Crossing Residences are CMU, Not Wood

The design intent for the 27 residences at Atwater Crossing in Los Angeles was to create homes with open floor plans that were filled with natural daylight and that would also meet the highest level of environmental standards. That goal was the starting point for a number of unique decisions …

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