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Concrete Stamps

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  • First of a series of five stamped concrete arches connected with fields of regular sawcut concrete.
  • The second arch at the entry to the fire lane, showcasing the spoke pattern created by the use of two different concrete colors and stamp patterns. First, the crew formed the arched bands with 1x6-inch boards and then formed the spokes.
  • The third and fourth of the five arches. The third arch is the largest, at 3,500 square feet.
  • Another overhead view of the fire lane, which winds around the exterior of the apartment complex.
  • A close-up, showing the stamping work in detail. The London cobblestone pattern for the field of palomino-colored concrete had to line up with the continuously moving radius.
  • The custom-made roller stamp used to imprint the brick soldier course pattern.
  • The concrete walkway encircling a water feature is palomino-colored concrete with a random stone pattern.
  • A close-up of the walkway. A dark brown release agent was used for an antiquing effect.

Project Challenge
To build a 20,000-square-foot concrete fire lane for the upscale Srour Apartment Complex in Rockville, Md., owned by Archstone, a leading apartment operations company. The job required placing both regular concrete and 12,000 square feet of decorative stamped concrete, all to be completed within a tight 36-day construction schedule. The project also required placing a decorative stamped concrete walkway encircling a water feature in the interior courtyard of the complex.

Design Goals
Surrounding the exterior of the building, the concrete pavement was intended to be the showpiece of the property. To reflect the name of the building owner, the work involved building 5 stamped arches into the fire lane, connected by regular concrete enhanced by decorative sawcuts. The stamped arches required the use of two different colors and stamp patterns to create a spoke pattern.

Secrets to Success

  • The moonlight gray concrete for the spokes was stamped with a 12-inch brick soldier course. "In order to stamp a straight soldier course on a radius, we fabricated a rolling device that gave us a rolling stamp. This worked great," says Hryniewicz.
  • To achieve an antiquing effect, the bands were finished with a liquid release agent colored with powdered release. A light coat of sealer was applied to "lock in" the color before the next placement.
  • After stripping the forms, the crew protected the gray concrete bands with plastic and then placed the fields of palomino-colored concrete. These fields were also finished with liquid release colored with powdered release. Everything was then sealed with a solvent-based acrylic sealer.

Products Used
Custom integral color, LaFarge
Stamps for arched areas: London cobblestone, Stampcrete; brick soldier course, Scofield
Random stone stamp for front walkway, Proline Concrete Tools
Colored release agents, Increte Systems

Special Awards
First place winner of a 2010 Decorative Concrete Award from the Decorative Concrete Council
Category: Cast-in-place stamped concrete, over 1500 square feet

Decorative Concrete Contractor
Gregory Hryniewicz
Hyde Concrete
Annapolis, MD 21402