The Concrete Foundations Association (CFA)—an international association dedicated to improving the quality and acceptance of cast-in-place concrete foundations—will convene for its annual summer meeting from July 24–26 at Stoweflake Resort in Stowe, Vt. The meeting will feature education and networking opportunities for the poured wall industry, as well as cover the latest trends, achievements, and successes.

Conference topics will include GPS equipment tracking, robotic layout technology, alternative markets, and mix design evaluation. For more information, visit

The Portland Cement Association (PCA) recently launched its DIY Promotion Zone—an online one-stop resource for planning and creating marketing communications materials. Users have access to a library of materials and templates that can be customized for specific events and companies.

This innovative Web site enables concrete producers, home builders, or contractors to create a variety of marketing materials. Templates includes print ads, brochures, event postcards, and e-mail blasts for use in promoting residential concrete products to both consumer and nonconsumer audiences. The site also offers a promoter the flexibility to customize materials with sacrificing the ability to maintain consistent, integrated, and professionally designed looks and messages. Visit the Zone at

The Insulating Concrete Form Association (ICFA) is calling for its Second Annual ICFA Excellence Awards program to promote the outstanding insulating concrete form (ICFs) projects throughout North America by its member firms. Commercial buildings and homes begun by April 1, 2006 and completed by July 20, 2007 that meet the criteria outlined in the ICFA Excellence Award Guidelines are eligible for the awards. Both ICFA Primary and Contractor members in good standing and their customers will be recognized in each category.

Categories include:

  • Large Commercial (20,000 square feet or more)
  • Small Commercial (Less than 20,000 square feet)
  • Large Residential (3000 square feet or more)
  • Small Residential (Less than 3000 square feet)
  • ICFA Sustainability Award
  • Grand Residential Award (selected from all residential projects submitted)
  • Grand Commercial Award (selected from all commercial projects submitted)

Participation is limited to ICFA members only and project entries are due by Friday, July 20, 2007. Winners will be honored at the ICFA Excellence Award Dinner in at ICFA's Fall Meeting and Expo at the Hyatt Regency Union Station in St. Louis, Mo. To learn more about the awards, go to

The ongoing correction in residential construction is anticipated to drag down overall 2007 construction activity, according to the more recent forecast from the Economic Research department at the Portland Cement Association (PCA). Cement consumption this year is projected to decline by 1.5%, despite a record 18% growth since 2003.

The spring forecast, presented by chief economist Ed Sullivan at the PCA Board of Directors Meeting in La Jolla, Calif., expects gradual gains throughout the second half of 2007. However, this will not be large enough to offset the weaknesses of the first half of the year. Sullivan's 2007 projection reflects a nearly 6 million metric ton decline in residential cement consumption levels compared to 2006.

Increased construction beginning midyear, though, will carryover to 2008, adding an estimated 3.9% growth in consumption. Declines in construction are offset partially by rising cement intensity—the increasing use of cement and concrete in construction projects. Sullivan also sees a 1.5% increase in cement intensity in 2007.

Contact to obtain the full PCA Spring Forecast or visit