Innovation has been in the DNA of Blues Simon Group since its inception/founding, not only in terms of the choice of materials, but also in the building processes themselves. For this reason, we do not hesitate to explore the latest construction trends, such as post-tensioned floors that have historically been used in civil construction works, such as bridges, and that we are now transferring to residential building.
This type of floor slabs, based on prestressed concrete, are made by means of a technique by which steel cables are tensioned after the concrete has set/cured, taking great care that it has reached sufficient strength to withstand the applied stresses. Obviously, to apply this method it is necessary to use both concrete and steel with high resistance.
From bridges to houses
Originally, the technique was used mainly in the construction of bridges, but little by little it has been transferred to other buildings. In markets such as the United States, it was gaining prominence in the 1960s. Previously, it has been necessary to avoid/solve some incidents, such as deformations when the thickness of the slabs oscillated between 20 and 25 centimeters, for example.
However, the technique evolved extraordinarily and one of the first additional applications that occurred were parking lots, later moving on to other large facilities such as sports complexes, indoor swimming pools, bus terminals or airports, etc.
With the passage of time, it is already possible to find this construction technique in cinemas and theaters, hotels, hospitals or large industrial offices. The common denominator is the size, capable of hosting a large public with large open spaces.
Advantages compared to traditional floor slab
Blues Simon Group, on the other hand, is committed to the technique for residential use, exploiting all its virtues, from the flexibility it provides when distributing it, to its versatility that it gives to create very open floors, with large openings between the pillars. In addition, it allows the free height between floor slabs to be increased, since the slab depth is reduced by half, compared to a traditional slab. In other words, the incompatibility that has historically existed between obtaining large open spaces while reducing the thickness of the floors, has been completely eliminated.
From the structural point of view, its continuity reduces the number of joints of concreting and expansion, which gives the construction greater structural integrity.
The practical application to a project
One of the drawbacks of the technique is that the assembly of the formwork requires more time than with the traditional system and more personnel involved simultaneously, but with correct planning it is not a difficult obstacle to overcome. Furthermore, in contrast, it has the advantage that it allows the shoring to be removed much earlier.
Additionally, post-tensioned floors fit in perfectly with our philosophy of respect and care for the environment, since they require the use of fewer materials (up to 40% less concrete and 75% steel), thus reducing the carbon footprint of the building (less greenhouse gas emissions, both in the production of materials and in their transport to the construction site).
For all the above, the technique is already a reality in one of our latest projects, the one carried out jointly with Ramón Gandía Brull (RGB Arquitectos), the Technical Architect, Joaquín Pérez (JJ Technical Architects) and Royal Residence Lifestyle. Its low-rise design but with a large surface area on each floor, made this home an ideal project to unleash our desire for innovation.