How to Add Value to Your Project with Natural Stone
Featured image: Riverside Roundabout, Los Angeles, CA. Reprinted with permission from Coldspring.
These days, many project owners are looking to achieve as much value as possible out of their ventures. And one of the best ways to maximize a project’s value is by specifying an enduring, durable, and high-performance product like natural stone. When you select and specify stone to maximize the material’s benefits, you’ll bring your vision to life while providing owners with an environmentally sustainable solution that meets their needs. Here, we identify several of the best opportunities to add value to your next landscape project with natural stone.
Take advantage of advanced stone manufacturing technology
Computer Numerical Control (CNC) technology has made its mark on stone design and fabrication, providing numerous benefits to those who take advantage of its capabilities. The CNC process enables highly-efficient manufacturing of some of the most creative designs imaginable. Through CNC manufacturing, designs are now possible that would have once been thought impossible or too costly to achieve.
Some typical applications for CNC technology include:
- Complex fountain or water feature designs
- Sculptural, artistic elements
- Radial or ramp and twist pieces
- Intricate landscape pavers
Maximize the stone’s usage through multiple finishes
By selecting multiple finishes of the same stone, designers can create variety without having to introduce a new material into the project. When different finishes are applied to a stone, a range of new tones and shades – varying from light to dark or muted to bold — are produced. The project site also remains unified through the use of one consistent material.
Designers may choose to change the stone’s finish to bring out different color tones on a project or to add a desired functionality at the site, such as delineating traffic within a paved area. The ability to change a stone’s shade and tone isn’t limited to only granite—most stones can be treated with various finishes to achieve different shades and functions.
The example below shows how different one stone can look when different finishes are applied to the same stone—in this case, Carnelian granite.
Specify for Sustainability
Natural stone adds value to any project through its sustainability properties. Stone—a single-ingredient product — is one of the most sustainable building materials that can be specified. Unlike alternative products, natural stone isn’t ground into a powder and combined with other resins, polymers, pigments, or chemicals to create a new product. In essence, a project that uses stone is simply borrowing it from the earth. At the end of its long life cycle, stone can be returned to the earth where it began.
When it comes to manufacturing processes for natural stone, the stone industry’s sustainability certification program allows stone suppliers and manufacturers to prove through third-party verification that their practices are environmentally responsible. To achieve certification, the natural stone company verifies that its extraction, manufacturing, and supply chain adhere to ethical standards.
By specifying this certified stone, you can ensure you are utilizing natural products with a sustainable and ethical supply chain on your project. The sustainability standard can also help projects meet sustainability goals, as the Sustainable Production of Natural Dimension Stone certification aligns with leading green building certifications, such as LEED v.4 and the Living Building Challenge.
Partner with a reliable stone source
Finally, an experienced partner and trusted natural stone supplier can help you find value and maximize your project’s budget. With a reliable stone source, you can count on projects to remain on schedule, without costly delays in shipping or manufacturing time.
As you consider a trusted partner, be sure to ask good questions. Do they have the capabilities and experience to work on the project? Have they shown you project examples to demonstrate their expertise? Do they offer tours of their quarry and manufacturing operations? These questions will help you begin the process of determining which partner is the right one for your project.