Build With Strength Demonstrates Case for Concrete Multifamily Construction

Last week, more than 50 attendees at NRMCA’s latest Build With Strength roundtable event learned about the ownership and construction benefits that insulating concrete forms (ICFs) provide to multifamily owners and contractors, reports Senior Director, Building Innovations, Donn Thompson. Held just west of Milwaukee in Waukesha, WI, the event was organized around the ongoing construction of The Den at Fox Run (pictured here), a new multifamily project featuring three all concrete low-rise buildings, each with lower-level parking and two stories of residential units.

Project owner Ryan Bedford shared the history of business strategies that have led to all of Bedford Development’s facilities now being built with concrete. Speed of construction, energy savings and quieter living environments are making Ryan’s projects far more profitable than frame projects they built in the past. Greg Rosenthal of Rosenthal Brothers Insurance described the increasing cost volatility of builders’ risk insurance for wood frame construction, where fire hazards are driving up costs dramatically relative to the premiums charged for non-combustible concrete solutions.

Members of the Insulating Concrete Form Manufacturers Association presented the basics of ICFs and answered questions posed by the developers, contractors, installers and designers in attendance. The ICF installer, KB Walker, shared innovative approaches it continues to investigate to move many of the ICF cutting and assembly steps off site, helping to further improve quality, efficiency and speed of installation. A tour of the construction site where these various innovations are being implemented concluded the event.

For more information, contact Donn Thompson at or Frank Gordon at

National Ready Mixed Concrete Association