FEMA study reveals value of tougher building codes

The National Concrete Masonry Association's Weekly eNews
Thursday, June 18, 2020

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National Concrete Masonry Association

FEMA study reveals value of tougher building codes

A first-of-its-kind study by the Federal Emergency Management Agency shows that modern building codes are averting $1 billion a year in structural damage in California and Florida, the nation's most disaster-prone states, according to preliminary findings. The study could be groundbreaking in the agency's effort to convince states and localities to adopt up-to-date building codes and to overcome opposition from builders, who have successfully argued in some areas that strengthened codes only increase construction costs. The FEMA study, which will be completed in August, is taking the unique step of calculating how much damage has been avoided nationwide by the adoption of modern codes. Other studies project how much damage the codes could avert in the future. Read more.

Hardscape North America postpones show until 2021

Due to the current concerns and uncertainties of the pandemic, the Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute (ICPI) has announced the postponement of Hardscape North America (HNA) trade show until October of 2021. The ICPI Board of Directors earlier this year also committed to continuing Hardscape North America in conjunction with the GIE+EXPO through 2023. Read more.

Manufactured concrete products Product Category Rule (PCR) open for public consultation

The updated Product Category Rule (PCR) for Manufactured Concrete Products and Segmental Concrete Pavers is now available for review and public comment. Developed through UL Environmental by a group of industry stakeholders, the updated PCR contains the requirements for concrete product producers to develop environmental product declarations (EPDs). Comments must be submitted by July 17, 2020. Review the PCR and comment here.

Webinar: Overview of Concrete Sustainability Hub resilience research

Since 2009, the MIT Concrete Sustainability Hub has developed breakthroughs in the resilience assessment and life cycle cost analysis of buildings in hazard-prone areas. This webinar will feature a summary of CSHub's resilience research since its inception. Franz-Josef Ulm, MIT Professor and CSHub Faculty Director, will present. Join this public webinar on Thursday, June 25 at 11 AM Eastern. Register here.

Using nanoparticles in mortar

Researchers are investigating the use of nanoparticles in masonry mortar to improve various properties, such as strength and durability. With their distinctive favorable properties of large surface area, high functional density, extraordinary surface effect, and high strain resistance, nanoparticles have taken a vital role in various applications. Over the last decade, many researchers have explored the use of nanoparticles in the construction industry to produce cement-based materials with superior properties. The use of nanoparticles may also be an effective solution to reduce the environmental impact associated with concrete production. Read more.

2020 HNA Project Awards now accepting entries

Even though Hardscape North America is postponed, the HNA Project Awards is still going on. Entries are now being accepted for the 2020 Hardscape Project Awards with 18 categories for new projects (less than 3 years old) and vintage projects (older than 10 years). If you have outstanding hardscape projects that can be submitted review the criteria. Find out more.

Dodge Momentum Index flat in May

The Dodge Momentum Index moved a scant 0.1% lower in May to 129.2 (2000=100) from the revised April reading of 129.4. The Momentum Index, issued by Dodge Data & Analytics, is a monthly measure of the first (or initial) report for nonresidential building projects in planning, The resilience of the Momentum Index over the last two months has been remarkable in the face of the COVID-19 crisis and resulting economic recession. While the Momentum Index may move lower in the future, its present level continues to suggest that there are enough projects entering planning to allow construction to begin a modest recovery in the third quarter. Read more.


Achieve a Better Finish With New BackerBead® With E-Flange™

New BackerBead with E-Flange from ClarkDietrich provides 80% greater embedment with mortar and stucco than standard flat flange profiles, which can reduce chances of cracking and improve the long-term performance of the cladding. A factory-applied backer rod makes caulking easy, reducing labor and material costs. Learn more today.



Trump reportedly considering a new $1 trillion infrastructure stimulus plan

US President Donald Trump is considering an infrastructure plan worth $1 trillion to help revive the economy from the fallout of coronavirus and push ahead with his longstanding goal of spending big on US infrastructure. Bloomberg, citing confidential sources, said a preliminary version is being prepared by the Department of Transportation. Under the plan, most of the money will be earmarked for infrastructure work in roads and bridges meanwhile the rest of the funds will be devoted to building the US 5G network and improving internet services in rural areas of the country, the sources said. Read more.

Did you know...

NCMA is a company based membership. There is something for everyone and every position within each member company to access to develop their skillset. Check out our website for educational, networking and other program opportunities. Or call us – we’ll walk you through. www.ncma.org


Ultra Drain Mat™ drainage ventilation system

Designed for exterior stone, stucco and brick applications Ultra Drain Mat is an easy-to-install rainscreen system providing drainage and ventilation for a wall system. Ultra Drain Mat keeps moisture from entering through mortar joints or cracks in cladding, creates a channel for moisture drainage and accelerates drying time of exterior cladding.





Call for Architectural Professors

The NCMA Education and Research Foundation has sponsored a Unit Design Competition for student teams at universities around the country for over 15 years. The competition fosters innovation, supports local universities and encourages the next generation of designers to add manufactured concrete products to their design palette.


While in previous years the program has funded the top three teams to present at the NCMA Midyear meeting in August, this year, both the judging and the presentations will be held virtually. This gives us the opportunity to expand our reach to include judges from all geographic areas of the country. We would like to engage them in our industry by inviting them to judge the competition. Do you have a relationship with a local college architectural professor that you would like to become involved in this program? Click here for more information about the Unit Design Competition. Please contact Brittaney Thompson or 571.224.9595 for details.

Are there standards that cover manufactured stone veneer?

Yes. There are two ASTM standards that cover manufactured stone veneer (MSV). ASTM C1670 is the product specification for MSV units, and ASTM C1780 is a guide standard covering installation of MSV. Find out more about these standards in FAQ 04-16.

NCMA Midyear Event schedule announced

Join NCMA members for NCMA’s virtual 2020 Midyear Event, August 4-6. Click here to see the current schedule of sessions and events.


Members and nonmembers will have the opportunity to participate in engaging and interactive sessions, forums, learning opportunities and networking. Registration is required to receive access to the event website. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call NCMA at 703.713.1900.

Upcoming webinars

Join us Wednesday, Wednesday, June 24 at 11 am eastern for the next webinar in the series, Ask the Experts about Masonry. The interactive session will be hosted by Jason Thompson and Nick Lang, P.E. and will feature real-world questions about jobsite and other masonry issues. Register today and bring your questions.


Check out the details of all live and recorded webinars here.

It's easy to advertise in eNews

If you're looking for an opportunity to get your company's name out there, and have all the big decision makers in the industry notice it, then consider advertising in the weekly eNewsletter you're reading right now -- eNews. It's easy, cost-effective, and there are a number of options and packages to choose from. All you have to do is contact Janis Mason at 847.234.6402, or by email, jmason@ncma.org.





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