Are the tolerances concrete construction—all construction--is expected to meet reasonable? When you check the tolerances from one trade against those of another, is it possible to meet both?

Apparently not from a discussion that took place at the ACI Construction Liaison Committee meeting in Milwaukee this week. What’s worse is that with today’s laser scanning systems, the position of everything in a building can be measured so precisely that this inability to meet tolerances is exposed. One contractor noted that these scans will prove that the tolerances defined in ACI 117 are impossible to meet and in fact were never reasonable, we just couldn’t really measure them.

But perhaps the other important issue for the concrete construction industry is whether these tolerances are necessary? If the position of a rebar is not within ¼ inch of where it was supposed to be, will the structure fall down? Will the rebar corrode much sooner than it should have?

This all sounds like a good thing to discuss at Concrete 2029. At this visioning session on May 10 in San Antonio, the concrete construction industry will attempt to define what issues are holding back our industry. You are invited to attend—sign up here.  It’s free, you just have to get yourself there. Over the next few months we will then develop a plan to address the issues identified and to move concrete construction into a stronger position. This could be the most important industry meeting for concrete contractors in a decade. Don’t miss it!