Concrete as a material and construction as a business go back quite a ways. You might say they’re old friends, even. We’ve got some fun concrete and construction facts for anyone who asks, any time. This stuff is our specialty. And it sounds like you’re asking.
So without further ado, here are some fun construction facts we would bet you’ve never heard before.
- Concrete is far and away the most popular building material. Not only is it durable, but it’s inexpensive and environmentally friendly. The coolest thing? It’s just made of gravel, sand, cement, and air. The material is among the oldest in construction supplies around the world. Ancient Romans and Egyptians relied on it for the likes of the Pantheon and the pyramids.
- Thomas Edison held 49 unique concrete-related patents. He hoped to design more unique concrete objects — like pianos! — but never got around to it. Luckily, people today are very creative, and Edison would probably be proud.
- Approximately 8 million Americans work in construction. Before 2006, that number was closer to 10 million. But masonry and construction are traditional, historic trades. While many jobs become obsolete with new technology, there will always be a need for builders, laborers, and other hands-on workers.
- Trump International Hotel and Tower here in Chicago is the largest concrete building in the world. Builders originally intended it to be the tallest building in the world, but they revised their plans after September 11, 2001.
- The American construction industry is valued at about 1.2 trillion dollars. Most new structures going up in the U.S. are commercial, but luxury housing and custom homes take up a whole 40% of that market. Over two billion pounds of cement are used every year — around the world.
- The global cement market is valued at more than 240 billion dollars. We’d bet they’re getting a lot out of that investment, though.