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Concrete masonry has developed in Colombia with very special architectural and technical characteristics, due to the restrictions of a developing economy (quality and availability of materials; training necessities; scale of application and cost relative to other technically equivalent alternatives). But those aspects have not stopped it from creating a very distinctive and high-quality image through clearly defined building categories: One and two-floor houses, low-rise apartment buildings, high-rise apartment and office buildings, churches, sport and social clubs, educational and industrial buildings, etc.; and, in a very special way, in institutional architecture, providing a distinctive image to buildings from supermarkets to designer's stores, including car dealers, gasoline stations, savings corporations, etc. The natural resources of the material, together with the ingenuity of Colombian architects and designers, are opening a great avenue for concrete masonry in this country, something that could be duplicated in many others with similar conditions.
architecture, buildings, Colombia, concrete blocks, construction, costs, facades, masonry
Director, Colombian Cement Institute — ICPC, Medellín,
Architect; Marketing Director, Cementos Nare, Medellin,