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You Look Good… For Your Age

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At the 2014 TCA Convention in San Jose, California, Jeffrey Brown of Powers Brown Architecture presented Small Smart Boxes. The talk featured a series of small corporate build-to-suits that, because they had a small or moderate portion of warehouse, manufacturing, or distribution in their programs, were pre-determined to be built using tilt-up. Many of the projects had won awards from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and each project had a unique look with a strong architectural concept and well-resolved details. The most interesting part of the presentation though was at the end when he let us all know that not once during his talk did he refer to any of the buildings as tilt-up.

We get in the habit of qualifying things and without realizing it, end up diminishing their importance or impact. We talk as if we’re referring to something that has a handicap, as if it deserves praise only considering its disadvantage. You throw pretty hard…for a girl. You look good…for your age.

As I look at the winners of this year’s tilt-up achievement awards, I do not see buildings that are impressive or well designed…for tilt-up. I see projects that are simply impressive and well-designed. I think the time has come to stop qualifying the work of our industry, especially when it comes to design, in a way that suggests it is at a disadvantage. Speed, durability, and economy are all widely accepted benefits and advantages of tilt-up. I think, at this point, it’s safe to add aesthetics to the list. Congratulations to all of this year’s Tilt-Up Achievement Award winners.

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TILT-UP TODAY, a publication of the Tilt-Up Concrete Association, is THE source for Tilt-Up industry news, market intelligence, business strategies, technical solutions, product information, and other resources for professionals in the Tilt-Up industry. A subscription to TILT-UP TODAY is included in a TCA membership. Subscriptions for potential TCA members are also available. If you would like to receive a complimentary subscription to the publication, please contact the TCA.