Traditional methods of high density construction using blocks and brickwork are giving way to more modern and efficient as well as faster methods in Australia. Many developers and builders are increasingly adopting the permanent formwork method as it offers several benefits over conventional construction processes, saving time as well as valuable floor space, which in turn allows the resulting building structure to be sold for additional profit.

According to Steven Terzian, General Manager of James Hardie Systems, permanent formwork provides the opportunity for faster cycle times compared to traditional block and brickwork. Employing technology to increase efficiency on construction sites, the company offers the Ritek XL Wall as the superior technical choice when it comes to permanent formwork.

Mr Terzian observes that block and brickwork cannot match the speed of permanent formwork in construction, with the latter offering the potential to save several days per floor on construction, helping achieve savings in time as well as labour costs. Building brick by brick, in comparison, requires more time, labour and space to store the bricks.

Key benefits of Ritek Wall Systems permanent formwork solutions include simple set-up and rapid concrete pour; minimal interference from weather, reducing downtime; water drip directed away from the building through a rebated track; faster floor cycle times; and additional floor space from reduced wall thickness.

Robert Morrison of J Hutchinson Pty Ltd used permanent formwork in The Garland, a seven-storey tower housing 24 apartments and located beachside at Coolangatta. Mr Morrison explained that the wall system provided much faster floor cycle times compared to traditional building methods, helping them maintain the strict building timelines.

Building with permanent formwork reduces wall thickness, leading to savings in overall floor space. Mr Terzian says there is more opportunity for greater profits within the same overall building dimensions. For instance, in a typical building of 100 lineal metres of outside wall, replacing a double brick wall, plus insulation and plasterboard, with a Ritek XL thermal wall, results in improved floor space of 11 square metres.

Ritek Wall Systems are suitable for use in single residential, multi-storey residential and commercial buildings as load bearing and structural walls up to 25 storeys.