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Habitat For Humanity breaks ground on ultra-durable, energy-efficient CarbonCast concrete homes

Habitat for Humanity of Westchester County has broken ground on extraordinary new housing units for four families at Purser Place in Yonkers, New York, just north of New York City.

The four duplexes feature a next-generation CarbonCast (www.altusprecast.com) prefabricated concrete technology utilizing embedded carbon fiber grid reinforcement that promises to deliver dramatic improvements in long-term performance and value over conventional wood-framed housing.

“As we saw with our recently completed homes at Willow Street, this construction method will allow us to more quickly place families into homes that will last much longer than a wood frame structure,” says Jim Killoran, Director of Habitat for Humanity of Westchester County. “This could revolutionize the way we build homes for Habitat for Humanity locally and nationwide.”

The 1,800-square-foot, two-story duplexes will have an appearance consistent with other homes in the neighborhood, with numerous architectural features. They are expected to be completed in 2007, with families moving in shortly thereafter.

“We’re thankful to the City of Yonkers for working with us to expedite the approvals for this site and the new technology,” said Killoran.

The CarbonCast carbon fiber grid reinforced precast concrete will be manufactured in a nearby factory and delivered to the jobsite, ready to erect. Since its 2004 introduction by Oldcastle Precast and the AltusGroup (www.altusprecast.com), a partnership of precast concrete manufacturers dedicated to innovative technologies, CarbonCast has been used in several commercial installations in the Metro New York City area. The Willow Street homes constructed for Habitat for Humanity represent the first completed residential structures to reap the technology’s multiple benefits.

“Homeowners who want unmatched durability, reduced heating and cooling costs coupled with low noise levels, and attractive looks can find a solution in CarbonCast precast concrete made using C-GRID carbon fiber reinforcement,” said Harold Messenger, Vice President, Oldcastle Precast, a member of AltusGroup. “This technology could bring unprecedented speed and quality to residential construction. We’re thankful to Habitat for Humanity and the City of Yonkers for giving us the opportunity to prove that CarbonCast technology is a viable and desirable technology for constructing homes.”

Specifically, the CarbonCast concrete homes will provide:
• Improved durability: Carbon fiber reinforcement does not corrode like its steel mesh counterpart. CarbonCast resists insects, pests, mold and fire.
• Extra insulation: The exterior walls deliver a healthy R-24 value and reduce expenditures on heating fuel.
• Peace and quiet: concrete walls keep occupant noises in and neighborhood noises out—especially helpful in densely urbanized areas.

Attendees at the August 17 groundbreaking ceremony included officials from the City of Yonkers and Habitat for Humanity, Messenger with AltusGroup and Tim Lussier from Oldcastle Precast among others. The day’s agenda also a featured a presentation at Iona College about the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System®, a voluntary, consensus-based national standard for developing high-performance, sustainable buildings.

About Altus Group
The first-ever national partnership of precast companies, AltusGroup was founded to develop, manufacture and market precast innovations such as the breakthrough CarbonCast™ line of products. With more than 25 structural and architectural locations in the United States, AltusGroup companies have an unparalleled national network of manufacturing plants, technical staff and sales personnel to ensure architects, engineers and contractors that they will get the help they need—and the quality and performance they expect—when they select C-GRID reinforced CarbonCast products. C-GRID is a registered trademark of TechFab LLC and is supplied to the AltusGroup under an exclusive licensing and supply agreement.


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