Educational Winner

Educare of Washington, D.C., provides early childhood education aimed at closing the achievement gap for children in poverty. The school needed a long-lasting floor that would withstand the abuse of daily traffic typical of the early education system. The resulting contemporary floor will be stunning the school district for years to come.

The design called for different aggregate exposures throughout the building, as well as a black integral color. Polishing subcontractor Hyde Concrete worked hand-in-hand with the concrete subcontractor (The Bartley Corp) through placement of the slab to the final burnishing. The first challenge came with the use of the black integral color in the slab. The subcontractors had to make sure color dispersion was consistent. The next issue: The integrally colored slab could easily show any imperfection once polishing operation began. To combat this, they made sure to fully refine the concrete with each pass to eliminate any inconsistencies in the scratch patterns.

The final challenge was the lobby. The owner had specified a medium aggregate exposure thoughout the lobby, whereas the rest of the hallways were a light aggregate exposure. Once polishing began, the crew noticed that the sawcut joints were curling more than in previous areas. This caused heavy aggregate exposure at the joints once grinding began.

Hyde Concrete called for a meeting with the general contractor and architect to discuss solutions, and suggested a heavy grind throughout the entire lobby to help try and blend the heavy exposure at the joints with the field. They agreed and everyone was delighted with the outcome.

Hyde then finished to a final grit of 1500 and burnished.