Exposed Concrete: The Latest Architecture and News
Many architects tend to prefer using materials and architectural elements in their natural or raw state. It is common to remove ceilings and finishings, especially in renovation projects, to expose a building's structure. This process of reclaiming the natural materials of construction - without incorporating elements to cover the framework, pipes, tubes, and cables - transforms these spaces into places that have nothing to hide.
It's safe to say that concrete is one of the most utilized construction materials in large-scale architectural projects. In Argentina, the use of concrete to construct high-rise apartment buildings offers a variety of advantages, especially when it comes to durability and the time it takes to build. This has made it the go-to material for many architects.
While concrete is without a doubt the world's go-to building material thanks to its durability, malleability, and ability to withstand a wide range of climates, it is also the principal source of CO2 emissions within the realm of construction. To combat this and reduce their creations' carbon footprint, many architects have begun experimenting and innovating in a bid to optimize concrete's technical qualities while diminishing its impact on the environment. Among these efforts, there are several projects that have explored the possibility of replacing traditional frameworks with more sustainable materials like bamboo, a resource that grows in abundance throughout many regions of the world and, along with having minimal environmental impact, renders high quality textured detailing on a variety of architectural surfaces.
With its wide range of applications and cosmetic properties, concrete is having a moment in the world of architecture. Today, thanks to the ever-moving stream of innovation in concrete production and application, optimal results are now the norm rather than the exception. For architects and builders alike, concrete is an opportunity to explore and experiment with tones and textures, ensuring that there is something for every design and project.
It's no secret that concrete has one of the highest CO2 emissions of all building materials, making it a focal point for architects looking to innovate and experiment with it as a way to optimize its production and application in construction while decreasing its environmental impact. This exploration of elements such as concrete's thermal inertia, which could serve to make buildings more energy efficient, as well as its durability, which guarantees a long-lasting, zero- maintenance structure even in the most extreme of climates. The ultimate goal is to create luminous living spaces with natural ventilation while simultaneously exploring the possibility of reusing frameworks as a way of cutting costs and streamlining the building process.
The use of concrete in construction is probably one of the main trademarks of 20th century architecture. Concrete is composed of a combination of materials which when mixed with water solidify into the shape of the container where it is poured in. In this sense, it is the container or the ‘moulds’ who rule the outcome. The reuse of molds for casting concrete is a technique used to replicate and control the production of concrete elements or buildings. Architects and designers have used/created diverse types of molds and casting techniques to explore the limits of the material.