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Commercial concrete can be broadly defined as concrete used to build or enhance business facilities, such as industrial buildings, warehouses, retail stores and even restaurants. Commercial concrete can be found nearly everywhere in a building, including the walls, floors, exterior walkways and pavements, and even the architectural details. When compared with residential concrete, commercial concrete usually has greater demands placed on it in terms of structural performance and durability. Commercial concrete floors and pavements often require a stronger concrete mix design and heavier reinforcement, such as post-tensioned slab construction.

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Commercial floors also need high-performance finishes or coatings that can withstand heavy foot traffic, abrasion and stains and are easy to maintain. They also must be slip resistant to avoid injuries to staff and customers. In restaurants, concrete floors must be easy to clean and be able to repel spills and food stains.

Concrete floors in high-visibility retail stores or restaurants may also require special decorative treatments to attract attention or convey a certain atmosphere. Sometimes they are colored or patterned to direct the eye and improve traffic flow. They may also be colored or graphically enhanced to reflect the theme of a restaurant or business. Epoxy terrazzo coatings are a popular choice for decorative flooring installations in high-traffic retail facilities because of their durability and design versatility. The newest trend in commercial concrete floor coatings are metallic epoxies, which give concrete floors a dazzling metal-like patina.

High-gloss polished concrete floors are also popular in commercial and retail facilities because they reflect overhead lighting and brighten indoor spaces. Other benefits of polished concrete include durability, abrasion resistance and low maintenance.

Concrete parking lots are a good investment for commercial facilities because they are easier to maintain, have a longer life span, and can support heavier vehicle loads than asphalt parking lots. They also are lighter in color, helping to reduce exterior lighting costs.

A growing trend in the construction of commercial buildings, particularly warehouses and big-box stores, is the use of tilt-up concrete walls. This building method is gaining in popularity because of its efficiency, flexibility, and speed of construction as well as the endless variety of tilt-up panel shapes, colors, and decorative features available. Decorative precast concrete is also used to enhance the exteriors of commercial buildings, and is often found in architectural elements such as columns, wall panels, lintels and window sills.

Here you’ll find more information about all these applications for commercial concrete and the unique advantages concrete offers in both the construction and architectural enhancement of commercial buildings. You can also read about some unique commercial projects where concrete was used to transform building interiors and exteriors.