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DC, Maryland, and Virginia have a long tradition of beautiful masonry. Driving through many of their cities you’ll spot rowhouses, hospitals, schools and other institutional buildings constructed with molded brick. Clay deposits and other raw materials (such as sand) are readily available throughout the Mid-Atlantic region, which is why local plants have been producing molded brick for more than 100 years.
As a stone designer, I am intrigued with and will collect anything unusual extracted from the earth. Enthusiastically, mineral experts and rock nerds like me will dig deep, ready to nose dive into the dirt all over the world, answering an energetic primal call that beats for our attention.
Introduced more than 20 years ago in the United States, rainscreens have become one of the most popular and effective technologies for deterring damaging rainwater intrusion into a building’s envelope.
The ‘Better Block’ assignment is a part of a required graduate course on materials and assemblies at the University of Washington Department of Architecture. The course is primarily a lecture course on construction materials and best practices for building envelope assemblies
Air and vapor barriers can be viewed as unsung heroes, defending a building enclosure and its occupants from poor thermal performance, unhealthy indoor air quality, moisture infiltration, and the problems that occur when moisture collects in the enclosure. A 2017 MASONRY blog post focused on the critical functions of air, water, and vapor barriers play in the building enclosure. How can contractors building MASONRY DESIGN enclosures select the proper air and water barriers to not only meet the architect’s specification but help the enclosure deliver optimal performance?
All matter breaks down over time. The structures that surround us today are no exception to that law of physics. Some building materials are more durable than others, like stone and steel, but unfortunately, the days of structures surviving thousands of years, like the Egyptian pyramids and Roman cathedrals, is over.
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