World of Concrete celebrates 40 years of industry excellence
By STAFF REPORTConcrete Construction Skills Development
World of Concrete 2014 boasted another strong turnout as more than 48,000 attendees and 1,250 exhibitors were on hand for the show at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nev. from Jan. 20 to 24.
Since relocating to Las Vegas in 1976, one year after the inaugural show in Houston, Texas, World of Concrete has continuously set records for attendance and square footage. The 2014 edition occupied 570,000 sq. ft. of space.
Several outdoor exhibits and demonstration areas gave attendees the chance to view the latest equipment in action and test new products under real jobsite conditions. Popular returning events included the John Deere Operator Challenge, Western Star Serious Trucks Challenge, MCAA’s Fastest Trowel on the Block & International Masonry Skills Challenge, SAIA’s Safety Boot Camp, and more.
The 12th annual Most Innovative Products contest showcased the best new products of 2014. Attendees browsed product entries at participating exhibitors’ booths and cast their votes at the show and online. Winners will be announced at www.votemip.com.
Four luncheons and forums took place during the week. At the Concrete Homes Luncheon & Forum, Hanley Wood’s chief economist Jonathan Smoke described current market conditions in states that have the greatest risk of damage because of natural disasters such as high wind loads and severe seismic activity. He forecasted that 73 per cent of single-family starts in 2014 will be located in these high-risk areas, suggesting growth for concrete home building systems as local jurisdictions adopt stricter building codes.
This year’s show saw the first World of Concrete Legacy Award handed out to Bob Weatherton. In his honour, a $5,000 scholarship was created for students considering a career in the concrete industry.
Four grand prize awards were also given out to recognize hardworking crews in the construction industry through the “Crews That Rock” contest. Webcor Builders and JT Wimsatt Contracting Company Inc. won in the commercial/for-profit category, while Denes Concrete Inc. and Gerace Construction Company Inc. won in the community service/non-profit.
The results from World of Concrete India (which took place in Hyderabad, India in October 2013) were announced during the show, as well as more details on the launch of World of Concrete Europe in April 2015.
World of Concrete 2015 is scheduled for the Las Vegas Convention Center from Feb. 3 to 6. Seminars will run from Feb. 2 to 6. www.worldofconcrete.com