Diamondhead Builder Using New Concrete Panel System

After the devastation Hurricane Katrina left behind, the interest in rebuilding with future storms in mind is something many Coast residents are exploring. One local contractor is trying out a new building product never used before in Mississippi.

It's cutting edge building technology the manufacturer says is far superior to traditional wood frame built homes.

"I definitely felt like it was time to try out a new product," contractor David Malley said.

The new product Malley is using is called ProTEC. Instead of building walls with 2x4s, a concrete insulated panel system will hold the Diamondhead home together.

"One of the big things with the panel is it's ready to finish. You don't have to hang drywall on the inside, the insulation's already there, the exterior sheeting, so your panel offers everything. Simply tape the joints, skim coat the panel and paint," ProTEC Product Manager Jeff Ketterer said.

The panels are made of concrete backer board sandwiched between Styrofoam insulation and bolted together with steel.

"We built a house in New Orleans last year that survived Hurricane Katrina," Ketterer said. We've got one going up in West Palm Beach Florida that's being built to a 170 mile per hour wind zones. We have an engineer on staff who can take the set of plans, look at the roof pitch, the over hangs of the roof, and then design it for that specific area."

The builder says the panels are also energy efficient and mold resistant. He says it only takes about a week to frame an average size home. As for the cost, he says its competitive.

Malley says the concrete paneled walls can be used on any story home or building and can even be used in constructing raised homes.

For more information on ProTEC you may call the company's Ohio plant at (513) 252-6130.

by Al Showers