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The Design Track is tailored to provide in-depth education specifically for those designing and engineering tilt-up projects.


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A Practical and Reliable Means to Polished Concrete Walls

September 20, 2018 from 10:00am to 10:30am

Dallas Ballroom BC

Barclay Gebel

Polished concrete is a beautiful, durable, low maintenance finish. Until lately it has been limited to horizontal surfaces. Past attempts at vertical applications have often failed to match the consistency and quality clients are used to in floors. Today, the tilt-up construction method is proving to be an efficient and reliable means to high-quality polished concrete walls. This presentation will feature two St. Louis area projects, the expansion of the Saint Louis Art Museum and Pfizer Bioplace, employing the tilt-up building system to deliver stunning wall panels. Barclay Gebel, vice president of field operations for Concrete Strategies will discuss each projects’ approach including mix design, polishing process and equipment, lifting and bracing, finishing and more. He will also highlight the benefits of tilt-up that make this finish practical.

A New Generation of Tilt-Wall Icons

September 20, 2018 from 3:00pm to 4:00pm

Dallas Ballroom BC

Greg Papay

Looking for inspiration from modern technology and historical precedent, Lake|Flato Architects has designed some iconic structures with tilt-wall concrete. Lake|Flato Partner Greg Papay, FAIA will share their approach to using a common material in uncommon ways to create transformational projects for their clients. He will present case studies of their work at Francis Parker School in San Diego, and The Doseum and Confluence Park in San Antonio, all award-winning projects, to illustrate the architectural, engineering and construction decisions the project team made to achieve their results. Owner input and feedback from owning these structures, some now a dozen years old, will also illuminate the life cycle outcomes of choosing tilt-wall.

The Tilt-Wall System and Commodity Architecture

September 20, 2018 from 4:00pm to 5:00pm

Dallas Ballroom BC

Jeffrey Brown, FAIA

Unlike contractors and developers in whose professions there is a very close alignment of the business and the professional sides of their industry, architecture is literally coming apart at the seams between the professional side that attempts to lead the discourse of what architecture is and does without any real interest in the everyday ongoing practice of architecture as a business. That imbalance is being corrected. Today, the marketplace is forcing architects to follow developers and contractors into turnkey delivery arrangements (CMAR, Design Build, Negotiated) where the architect is not directly contracted to what is at least putatively the client.

This is a business-like invasion of a time-honored artistic arrangement which architects as a whole do not like due to the loss of relationship and thus control, via commodification, of the architect to the client. And interestingly there are many kinds of buildings that “commoditize” readily.

There are many markets in this country where the thought of constructing a big-box industrial building out of anything other than tilt wall is unheard of. Said differently block and brick has effectively been superseded by tilt wall as a cost-effective method for big-box building programs in nearly all markets. There are some markets where you can say the same for non-high-rise code multistory office buildings. In those markets, tilt wall again aligns harmonically with a commodity building type. It should not go without saying that it does so with a high potential for formal innovation into the bargain.  The obvious extension of this observation, of this unique phenomenon, becomes what other building types are sliding towards commodity status - and thus possibly colliding into tilt wall technology? (think schools….) And what non-commodity building types are being pressured economically to perform like commodity types from a cost and prospectus orientation? (think your local community center….) Are they also destined to meet tilt wall as approach to balancing cost and FORM?

Pitfalls of Alternative Tilt-up Design Approaches

September 21, 2018 from 9:30am to 10:30am

Dallas Ballroom A3

Trent Nagele

In most engineering firms tilt-up wall design is done by one of three methods: hand calculations, spreadsheets or similar calculations developed in-house, or using commercially available software.  Once established in an office, the underlying assumptions of these methods are often used for some time without being revisited or updated, possibly because various code changes may seem inconsequential or the cliché “if it works, don’t fix it” seems to apply. At other times, engineers may believe they’ve improved upon the code provisions with alternate equations from research or simply using a much more involved computational process with complex iterations or finite element modeling.  While it might be tempting to deviate from the design provisions within ACI 318, maybe with the intent to be more economical or more accurate, it is important that it is done with a clear understanding of the ramifications. This presentation will discuss some of the potential pitfalls of using alternate design approaches, which in reality can often be invalid and unconservative.

Synthetic Fiber Reinforcement Solutions for Concrete Cracking

September 21, 2018 from 10:30am to 11:30am

Dallas Ballroom A3

Dan Vojtko

Everyone knows that concrete is prone to cracking.  However, there are multiple causes of cracking, from plastic, settlement and drying shrinkage to load induced causes.  Each of these cracking types should be understood in order to choose the most appropriate solutions.

Synthetic fibers provide an effective crack control solution for a variety of concrete construction applications and are gaining industry acceptance as a secondary reinforcement alternative to traditional welded wire mesh and light gauge bar.

As synthetic fiber usage grows in concrete construction, the strengths and limitations of their use must be understood. Not all fibers are created equal. The appropriate choice of fiber type is application-dependent.  

This presentation will provide an introduction into synthetic fiber use in concrete, the differences between synthetic fiber types, how fiber crack control performance is quantified and the benefits that fiber use can bring to a Contractor.

Tilt-Up Panel on Shim Pads Wall Footing and Panel Design

September 21, 2018 from 11:30am to 12:30pm

Dallas Ballroom A3

Shane Walters, P.E.

This presentation will focus on the design of foundations for loads imposed while panels are being erected on shims or grout pads, as well as the control of cracking in panels during this construction condition. This can govern the design of the foundation for shallow footings or heavy panels. Panel cracking due to base restraint will be explored and examples of methods/calculation to help mitigate these factors will be discussed.

From Computer to Casting Bed: Navigating the Details of Tilt-Wall

September 21, 2018 from 1:30pm to 2:30pm

Dallas Ballroom A3

Charles J. Reagan

In a perfect world, would it not be great if Architects communicated their ideas exactly through their drawings and to their structural engineer, both of whom communicated exactly these ideas to the tilt wall detailer, who in turn would produce great panel drawings, thus making the setting up of casting beds a seamless operation? Join us to discuss keeping constructability top of mind during the design process, close coordination between architectural and structural drawings, and following through on dimensional criteria during detailing.

Track highlight

Attendees will get a behind the scenes look at the construction of the monumental polished tilt-up panels making up the Saint Louis Art Museum's new building.

The Saint Louis Art Museum, Located in Forest Park in Saint Louis, Missouri, is situated atop Art Hill overlooking the Grand Basin, the central gathering place for the 1904 World's Fair. Designed by renowned American architect Cass Gilbert, the Saint Louis Art Museum's original structure was the only building from the World’s Fair designed to be permanent. The 200,000 square foot addition, designed by London architect David Chipperfield, consists of large, clean expanses of glass and monumental planes of highly polished black concrete. The stark contrast created by the simplicity and darkness of the expansion keeps clean the reading of the original building and establishes a somewhat submissive attitude while sustaining its own sense of monumentality.

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