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Palo Verde Elementary
  • Tulare, CA
  • Palo Verde Elementary

    The number of children enrolling for classes in the city of Tulare, California is rising and that means growth for one of the city’s longtime elementary schools.


    Tulare is situated in the Central San Joaquin Valley, 45 miles south of Fresno and 60 miles north of Bakersfield. To accommodate the influx of new students, Palo Verde Elementary School needed a new classroom wing and recreation building. Designers also wanted the new building to have the look of existing brick structures.

    David A. Willis, architectural sales representative for Basalite, says that need made Spec-Brik® from the Concrete Products Group (CPG) a perfect choice for the school’s expansion.

    “The existing administration and classroom buildings are veneered with a flashed clay brick,” says Willis. “Spec-Brik in CPG’s Stanton Blend closely matched Palo Verde’s older buildings and provided concrete masonry’s durability, reduced life cycle maintenance costs, and design versatility.”

    When it comes to matching clay brick, CPG member companies produce 12 blends that beautifully approximate the color and appearance of traditional brick. In addition to nationwide color availability, the size and scale of Spec-Brik make it a fast track, cost-effective solution that generates time and cost savings for school applications.

    Willis says in addition to the half-high Spec-Brik units, the new building also contains Basalite 8” and 12” smooth and split-face architectural masonry units.

    To ensure the new structure withstands the effects of wind-driven rain and moisture, all of the concrete masonry and pre-blended mortar used for this project was manufactured with Rheopel® integral water repellent by BASF.

    To reduce the appearance of efflorescence and mortar smears, the building was also cleaned with NMD 80™ New Masonry Detergent by EaCo Chem, Inc.

    This expansion is part of the school district’s plan to eventually house up to approximately 1,000 K-8 students. The new structure opened to students in the Fall of 2013 and has quickly become a busy spot on the Palo Verde campus.

    “The architect was pleased with the finished building and would specify Spec–Brik again if the opportunity arose,” says Willis.

    • Product Type: Spec-Brik®
    • Producer: Basalite
    • Client: Palo Verde Unified School District
    • Builder: David A. Bush Construction, Hanford, CA
    • Masonry Contractor: McCurley and Day Masonry, Fresno, CA
    • Architect/Engineer: DKJ Architects, Visalia, CA / Parrish Hansen Inc. Structural Engineers, Clovis, CA
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