Challenging The Durability and Aesthetic of Houses with Exposed Aggregate Concrete
To understand why exactly exposed aggregate concrete seems to be the best decision a family building a house must take, we need to start from the basics. Houses or accommodations have been there for time immemorial. They have many essential functions, which include giving shelter from predators and harsh climatic conditions. They are also what keeps a family together by providing spaces for conversation. A home, as many call it, is where one can be themselves. A home is where one can let go of all the inhibitions related to work and such.
Building Houses in This Era
Even today, a house fulfils the basic essential functions such as shelter. Yet, people who live in it often tend to take it for granted. Yes, they need protection, but they are different from the era of hunters and gatherers used in this example.
In this modern era, homes are also an expression of creativity. Architecture in Australia, specifically houses, reeks in the fusion of western aesthetics and adaptability to climate and environment. It only fits to understand why an Australian family would want something aesthetic but also durable.
A family consists of an array of different ideas. Some might think about durability, while others think about the aesthetic. Some people even attempt to build houses and create an aesthetic that ‘speaks’ to them. When a house reflects what one person likes, it truly becomes unique. But, one idea that is unfortunately propagated widely is that aesthetic and durability cannot exist together.
The Aesthetic Created by This Exposed Cement:
Why is this idea even upheld? Aesthetic products are firstly often limited to only the aesthetic. Taking a painting, for example, it gives only the aesthetic in your walls. Still, it doesn’t do anything or give anything back.
So many find it pointless to invest on something that is just standing still. Second, investment is a large part of aesthetic purchase. Aesthetic products like the discussed painting are almost always expensive. It is because of how most creative pieces are handcrafted and made as one single unit for personal use and not mass manufacturing. But homeowners nowadays want both; beauty and durability. Is that even possible?
Exposed aggregate concrete falls under the purview of aesthetics and durability. Concrete is a familiar concept, but what does it mean to be ‘exposed’?
To expose cement, the upper layer of concrete is removed to expose the aggregate underneath. Essentially it is like removing a smooth lid to showcase the interiors. Aggregates are granular, rough materials in the cement. Since the ‘lid’ is removed, these are exposed in a jagged and rough manner. The exposed material creates a beautiful aesthetic. Uneven edges can also be customised by choosing the aggregates one would like to add. This can include aggregates such as decorative stone, granite, limestone, basalts, and gravel.
Can Exposed Concrete Also Be Durable?
The described understanding of exposed aggregate concrete has ticked all the boxes of aesthetics. But how can uneven granules be durable or useful? Essentially, it is very durable. A longer explanation is, however required. By removing the ‘lid’ of the cement, a very uneven surface is created.
This uneven surface is actually very useful. Without a smooth surface, chances of slipping, sliding or skidding are reduced drastically. This is exactly why this surface is often used near pools where water people fall if they walk on wet floors. Similarly, an exposed driveway works perfectly with vehicles as it provides friction, preventing skidding during winters. It becomes a secure platform for a vehicle.
Debunking The Aesthetic/Durability Myth:
Considering the pros and cons discussed, the myth that durability and aesthetics cannot exist together is debunked. Exposed concrete is durable and aesthetic. A bonus being that it is also affordable. Australian architecture has always been ahead when it comes to optimising good aesthetics but also strong foundations. With the clarity of Australian architecture, house building has never been easier!