The advantages of precast concrete over steel or cast-in-place concrete make it particularly appealing for projects where schedule and cost-effectiveness are of critical importance. In addition to value, durability and speed-to-market, precast provides flexibility in space planning and increased return on investment. For the general contractor, precast concrete can contribute to the overall sustainability of a building, as well as allow for integrated project delivery that reduces schedule and project costs.
Precast structural components are fabricated in a controlled plant environment and can be erected in weather conditions that would delay the full erection of steel components or CIP concrete. For general contractors, the advantage of precast is that faster erection reduces the overall construction schedule and overhead costs.
Plant-cast precast products offer the advantage of being more durable than field-placed concrete partly because they are manufactured in a controlled environment. The low water-cement ratio used in precast concrete creates a denser product that does not allow penetration of chlorides and other harmful elements as easily as field-placed concrete.
Silica fume, fly ash, and slag cement are all considered “green” products and their use as part of the overall precast concrete mix can add LEED points to a project.
Integrated Project Delivery
Structural precast components can be erected in a relatively short period of time because they interlock to support one another. Simpler installation requires fewer crew members, which means less traffic and waste on a job site. For the general contractor, the precast advantage is a cleaner and safer job site with less risk and more assurance of a smooth and successful project flow.
Increased Value to Owner
The inherent strength, quality, and density of precast concrete produced by Shockey Precast, combined with a regular maintenance program, can result in a parking structure with a typical cycle life of 40-50 years – far greater than the typical life of a CIP parking structure.
Flexibility of Space Planning
In parking structures, office buildings, or total precast structures, the use of precast structural components allows for longer spans. In office buildings and total precast structures, longer spans create larger open floor plans and increase the flexibility of design. For parking structures, longer spans increase the sense of visibility and security.