Austrian Regional Quality Brand for concrete products
The Association of Austrian Concrete and Precast plants (VÖB) presented a new quality label, that makes the regional concrete products recognizable immediately. The unique brand aims at identifying quality local products and the concrete products have to fulfill a series of criteria in order to be enabled to use the quality brand.
“The quality label says “concrete from the region – a part of us” and it guarantees a lot of advantages” said Robert F. Holzer, Vice President of VÖB. He emphasizes that: “The new quality label is only awarded to manufacturers who produce all of their concrete products (the whole production phase) in Austria according to the local regulations, laws and they comply with the standards” (…)” The quality of service is a crucial part of the guidelines that VÖB imposed on its members, continues Mr. Holzer, because only whose service consistently meets the high quality Austrian standards, receives the quality label. “
FIB is invited to G7 alliance
Fédération l’Industrie du Béton (FIB) was asked by the French Ministry to intervene at the official launch of the G7 Alliance of Efficient Use of Resources. CERIB was represented by Marc Lebrun (CEO of CERIB) in Berlin, Germany on 2 October 2015.
Germany, who holds the Presidency of the G7 Alliance, created the group Efficient Use of Resources with the purpose of exchanging best practices. The goal of the initiative is to drive innovation in this area and to achieve the decoupling between economic growth and use of raw materials.
Marc Lebrun recalled the fundamental role of concrete (the equivalent of an Eiffel Tower every 10 seconds in the world) and its contribution to modern society. His speech demonstrated the efforts made by concrete as a material and also as a product in the context of the circular economy requirements.
- The University of Dundee will hold next year (4-6 July 2016) the 9th International Concrete Conference with the theme “Environment, Efficiency and Economic Challenges for Concrete”. There is an open call for papers for several thematic areas.
For further information please visit: http://www.ctucongress.co.uk/.
- On 25 September 2015, the European Minerals Day was inaugurated at a Launch Ceremony hosted at the Cimalux cement operations in Rumelange (Grand Duchy of Luxembourg) on the Luxembourg-French border.
With the presence of the Luxembourg EU Presidency, alongside the European Commission and a Member of European Parliament, the pan-European open doors took place during the two day event (25-27 September). The event aimed at addressing the challenges and opportunities for Europe’s mineral raw materials sector in a circular and competitive economy.
Pan-European Open Quarry and Plant Days
- On 14 October 2015, the European Builders Confederation celebrated its 25 years anniversary with a photo exhibition and a dinner. The event addressed the involvement of women and young people to the construction sector to make construction SMEs more inclusive.
- On 15 October 2015, the Groupement Belge du Béton held Concrete Days 2015 in Anderlecht, Belgium. The programme of the day included a student competition and award ceremony, amongst others.
- On 15 October 2015, the Buildings Performance Institute Europe (BPIE) published a discussion paper titled “The active role of buildings in a transforming energy market”. The paper describes the important role of the building sector in the decarbonisation of energy sector and it presents strategies to speed up the interaction between the energy and building sector.
- On 16 October, the Small Business Standards SBS organised its first EU conference on “Smart standardisation for SMEs”. The conference was the first of a series of annual conferences – aiming to discuss the impact of standardisation process on SMEs. The event held the title “From national to European standardisation in a global context”.
Amongst others, the event focused on the importance of standards in boosting competitiveness for SMEs, the promotion of national best practices, the added value of being involved in the standardisation process, and the transition from national to European standardisation.
- On 19 October 2015, the Wordsteel Association published its 2015 Sustainable Development Charter. The principles highlight the steel industry’s commitments to improving the social, economic and environmental performance of member organisations.
- According to the International Standards Organisation (ISO) standards distribution newsletter (STADIST) the Technical Committee “Buildings and civil engineering works” (ISO/TC59) Sub-Committee “Sustainability in buildings and civil engineering works” (ISO/TC59/SC17) started working on general principles and terminology.
- On 20 October 2015, the Technical Committee on Timber structures (CEN/TC 124) started working on a revision of the standard on “Timber structures – Laminated veneer lumber (LVL) – Requirements” (prEN 14374 rev).
- Last month Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) began using a concrete printer that enables objects of up to 11 meters long, 5 meters wide and 4 meter high to be printed.
Live from the European Union
Relevant calls of HORIZON 2020 for the concrete sector
On 13 October, the European Commission adopted the HORIZON 2020’s 2016-2017 work programme which represents a EUR 16 billion investment budget for the next two years.
For the list of coming calls which could be in the interest of the concrete sector, please contact the Secretariat.
National Award Winners
Stormen Concert Hall and Library (DRDH Architects) -Norway
The Norwegian Precast Concrete Price 2015 was awarded to a new library and concert hall, called Stormen, in the city of Bodø, which is situated in an important, however previously undeveloped part of the city center. The new buildings contribute to a revitalization of the area Storgata, Sjøgata, the harbor and Hålogalandsgata. Stormen and its public areas create space for activities in the previously empty harbor quarter. The buildings are situated in a challenging context where they must relate to the existing street grid, the harbor, the landscape as well as the diversity of the surrounding existing buildings.
The challenge is met in an exemplary way by creating two volumes that complete the block without dominating the cityscape.
Both of the Stormen buildings have facades of precast concrete. The white facade elements are brushed and lightly polished highlighting the marble structure in the surface. The geometry of the façade elements is complex; with its precise joints, corners and window openings, it expresses a serene elegance. The geometrical design is symmetrical in both buildings. The facades and columns reaching upwards give the buildings elegance and they also fit well with the surroundings and the coastal landscape.
The innovative use of precast concrete facades is essential for the unique design of these buildings. The details are thoroughly planned and consistently implemented, from the size and form of each element to the small details in the columns, windows and entrances. The precast facade elements are used in a challenging manner, partly due to the overlapping corners as in masonry. The complex pattern of division in the elements invites curiosity regardless of the perspective from which they are viewed.
The project is the result of an excellent cooperation between client, architect and the precast concrete producer.
Category: Cultural building
Client: The Municipality of Bodø
Architect: DRDH Architects, London
Acoustics and scene technics: Arup
Landscaper: Dark Arkitekter AS
Size: 18 038 m2
Localization: Storgata 1A og 1B, Bodø
Finalized: 15 november 2014
Precast Concrete: Overhalla Betongbygg AS
News in brief
10 November 2015
CEN/TC 229/WG 1 and WG4 meeting
17 November 2015
BIBM General Assembly
19 November 2015 (upon invitations only)
The Concrete Initiative: Citizens at the heart of sustainably-built environment
19 November 2015
ECP TF Fire & Eurocodes
20 November 2015
23 November 2015
CPE CPR meeting
25 November 2015
BIBM Technical Commission (tbc)
26-27 November 2015
JRC SafeSust workshop
1st December 2015
3 December 2015
The Concrete Initiative Thematic Lunch on Rebuilding (upon invitation only)
10 December 2015
CPE Workshop on EPDs
17 December 2015
To the Newsletter of Construction Products Europe (former CEPMC), please follow this link.
To read the Quarterly Newsletter of The Concrete Initiative, please follow this link.
List of Acronyms
CPE – Construction Product Europe
CPR – Construction Products Regulation
C&D waste – construction and demolition waste
ECP – European Concrete Platform
EMA – European Masonry Alliance
JRC – Joint Research Centre of the European Commission
PCR – Product Category Rules
TF – Task Force
AhG – Ad-hoc Group