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Concrete Truncated Domes

Setting the standard for quality & durability in detectable warning surface

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Concrete Truncated Domes

By Aaron McConachie

When stamped into fresh cement, concrete truncated domes can be difficult to form according to proper ADA design.  Success depends on the skill, or artistic ability, of the installer and the Inspector’s perceived importance of achieving correct dimensions. 

Concrete Truncated DomesIf compliant domes are formed, meeting all applicable codes, the question of durability still remains.  Much like a handrail on a fourth storey balcony, truncated dome detectable warnings are safety devices which must be maintained in order to stay functional and reliable.  Stamped concrete truncated domes are composed entirely of the top layer or slurry of the cement and do not incorporate any aggregate to give the domes strength. Few cities or property owners have the necessary resources to fix broken domes on an annual basis and the repair procedure of stamped concrete domes is highly labor intensive. 

An alternative, which will still permit the quick and easy installation of a detectable warning surface, is the Armor-Tile Cast In Place Tile System.  A single, full-size panel, typically 2’x4’, can be installed by pressing the tile into fresh cement, locking it in place with a series of built-in, embedment flanges or ribs.  Armor-Tile’s vitrified polymer composite material is highly durable and wear resistant functioning virtually maintenance free for years.

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