Tilt-up is a construction method which allows a great deal of flexibility and innovation.
The use of concrete as a construction material offers the designer structural capacity, fire resistance, acoustic capacity, thermal capacity, aesthetic qualities and durability.
Initially tilt-up panels were often simply used as cladding panels continuously supported on strip footings.
Today most tilt panels span between pad footings and have the potential to carry the roof load and provide transverse load resistance in shear.
Tilt-up construction has the potential to realise the following advantages over alternative building systems:
- Lower Cost - lower costs can arise from faster construction and a simpler structural form than alternative concrete systems.
- Speed of Construction - tilt-up panels are often erected and in place within a few weeks of access to site. Finishing trades can then commence resulting in earlier occupancy.
- Design Versatility - tilt-up is a structural form in itself and columns and concrete encased portal legs can often be eliminated. Panels can provide a wide range of integral architectural treatments.
- Weather proofing - panels do not require any protective treatment to provide weatherproofing to the structure and will remain durable over the life of the structure.
- Robust material - maintenance costs are reduced because reinforced concrete by its rugged nature is able to with- stand the heavy wear imposed by commercial and industrial applications.
- Fire rating - tilt-up panels have inherent fire rating capabilities.
In many early tilt-up industrial developments the associated office accommodation (the prestigious 'front' of the building) was carried out using a different form of construction.
Current detailing and finishing approaches have made tilt-up walls suitable for use throughout the project. Since 1980, the availability of specialist tilt-up hardware has increased the scope for development of tilt-up. This and the improved appearance of tilt-up have largely been responsible for increasing the range of applications for the method in recent years, particularly in Australia and USA.
The diversity of applications allows for broad developments as office or industrial parks using tilt-up in commercial, recreational and residential construction.
The following list illustrates the diversity of applications:
- Commercial/Industrial Construction - warehouses, automotive workshops, storage units, offices, factories, motels, hotels, restaurants, shopping complexes.
- Rural Construction - farm sheds, piggeries, dairies, tanks, drainage systems, grain storage bunkers, settlement tanks.
- Recreational Construction - squash courts, indoor cricket facilities, gymnasiums.
- Residential Construction - houses, 2-3 storey flats, town houses.
- Other Construction - churches, community halls, schools, colleges, motorway sound barriers, retaining walls.