Concrete products and applications contributed to the latest NextGen Demonstration Home in Las Vegas, making it a greener home. Although one of the biggest show homes designed at 5,200 square feet, the home is expected to be 95 percent more efficient than a standard home. Much of this efficiency is a direct result of the use of insulating concrete forms to frame the exterior walls.
“Home building systems like ICFs combine concrete’s
traditional strength and durability with insulation systems,” Jim Niehoff, PCA
director, low-rise building markets said. “The mass of concrete slows down the
passage of heat moving through the wall, meaning that with the same amount of
insulation, a concrete home stays warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer
than a wood frame home.”
An interior plaster finish applied directly to the ICF walls
provided additional thermal protection and eliminated the need to use drywall.
Exterior walls were also coated with Portland cement stucco.
The energy savings is just one benefit the NextGen project
gained from ICFs. Concrete’s natural resistance to fire and its strength
against earthquakes provided the attributes necessary to certify the house by
the Institute for Business & Home Safety’s Fortified program. A Fortified
home includes building options that protect the home against natural disasters
mostly likely to occur in the region. The Las
Vegas home was strengthened to withstand fire and
Additionally, the home’s driveway is paved with pervious
concrete pavers that allow rainwater to filter through and re-charge the ground
Show Home Illustrates Benefits of Concrete
January 19, 2009