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ACI Publishes 332 Standard

IT FINALLY HAPPENED!

The long-awaited 332 Standard, the first accepted consensus document for residential concrete, was approved by the Board Standards of the American Concrete Institute. Several CFA members have worked towards this goal for over ten years. Buck Bartley, Barry Herbert, Ron Colvin, and Brent Anderson are to be congratulated for their input and guidance throughout the process. Jim Baty, the committee’s new secretary, also put forth a tremendous effort in the final push to get the document ready for ACI review.

ACI is an engineer, university professor, and supplier-dominated organization; therefore, the incorporation of the contractor perspective was not only helpful, it was essential. Without the input of those who have to live with documents drafted outside the construction industry this would have been a vastly different and cumbersome document.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR THE AVERAGE CFA MEMBER?

Once it is published, which should occur after the first of the year, it can be referenced as a document that bears the weight and significance of other ACI Standards, most notably, ACI 318 (the engineering and code “bible” for concrete construction). Application was already made to the International Residential Code (sponsored by PCA, ACI, and CFA) to reference the 332 Standard in the next edition of the IRC. The document does not formally become a code until a legal jurisdiction, such as your local city government, formally adopts the Standard.

This document further defines acceptable practices and design guidelines, beyond the IRC. It includes extensive tables for empirical design of foundation walls that incorporate less stringent design parameters than ACI 318 uses and many other less obvious, but equally important, regulations.

While this is a significant milestone, it is just a beginning. Many compromises, deletions, and restrictions were accepted by the committee, which now need revisited. Above grade concrete wall construction, for both ICF’s and traditional solid walls with reusable forms, was entirely deleted in order to gain the consensus needed for approval. A new structural design section, which was more residential friendly, was also deleted. Acceptance of a residential standard is a point of departure from more stringent and conservative commercial construction requirements where guidelines and standards for residential construction can be developed. The CFA and its members will continue to play a vital role in this process.

Ed Sauter, Executive Director, CFA
esauter@cfawalls.org

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Concrete FACTS, a publication of the Concrete Foundations Association, is THE voice for residential concrete industry news, market intelligence, business strategies, technical solutions, product information, and other resources for professionals in the cast-in-place concrete industry. Subscriptions to Concrete FACTS is available to anyone involved or interested in the residential concrete industry as a service to your industry. Please contact CFA Headquarters to find out more about your free subscription or Email Us