Terrazzo Features and Benefits
Terrazzo offers many benefits to commercial and residential buildings. Consisting of marble chips and/or other decorative aggregates joined in either a cementitious or epoxy binder, terrazzo is a versatile flooring system. Today, terrazzo has seen a surge in popularity among architects and designers, and as a result, terrazzo is becoming a staple in many construction projects around the world. This is because terrazzo features characteristics that aid in the form and function of a building. These features include:
- Unlimited Design
- Low Maintenance and Low Costs
- Bacteria Resistance
- Slip Resistance
Terrazzo was created during the 15th Century with credit given to Venetian marble workers for using marble remnants to create inexpensive flooring surrounding their homes. Archeologists go as far as to pre-date terrazzo to Ancient Turkish civilizations 8,000 years ago. There is evidence today that terrazzo floors that were installed centuries ago have outlasted the structures themselves. With the creation of epoxy terrazzo, terrazzo is now more durable than before.
Terrazzo is one of the most durable and cost-effective flooring systems available today. The material withstands high amounts of pressure, making the floor ideal for public buildings dealing with high levels of foot traffic daily. These buildings include schools and universities, government centers, hospitals, airports, restaurants, and stadiums, which benefit from having terrazzo floors installed. Because terrazzo is built to last, it is a rare case where terrazzo needs a replacement. Even if terrazzo damages over time, refinish comes at a fraction of the cost of the initial floor installation.
If you are looking for a flooring system with great design opportunities, then there’s no flooring system out there like terrazzo. That is because terrazzo offers architects and designers the option of creating almost any design imaginable. The floor is a canvas for one’s own design preference. From minimalist or ornate to monochromatic or colorful, terrazzo puts you in control of a design.
With the expansion of epoxy terrazzo over the years, terrazzo now offers an unlimited color palette to choose from. More so, aggregates come in various color options as well. Marble chips and recycled glass chips come in different colors and textures and are cut into a specific size for a floor’s design.
Terrazzo design can serve a purpose too. Using waterjet technology, the machine cuts detailed logos and graphics for a terrazzo design. This works wonderfully for schools and hospitals that are seeking to create a unique atmosphere. The use of colors in these designs can work to establish a particular tone. In addition to magnificent artwork, terrazzo can work as a navigational tool to guide people from one place to another through the use of free-flowing lines and patterns.
Low Maintenance and Low Costs
Floor cleaning is unavoidable; however, terrazzo is a low-maintenance flooring system. That means that once a terrazzo floor is complete, it’s easy to clean and maintain a terrazzo floor. With a routine cleaning procedure and the occasional resealing, terrazzo floors will continue to remain beautiful. This works great in large spaces.
Expect terrazzo maintenance costs to be minimal. By making sure you are taking the right steps to maintain your floor, the less likely foreign matter have a chance at damaging the terrazzo. Years from now, property owners can see that terrazzo is a valuable investment.
Another terrazzo feature is its level of porosity. Seamless in nature, terrazzo is a non-porous system that prevents microbial growth and moisture vapor transmissions. Along with the zero VOC content found in the epoxy, terrazzo surfaces vastly improve the overall indoor air quality for many public buildings. This even makes cleaning terrazzo so much easier because owners have to worry less about bacteria accumulating in between grout lines or spills staining the terrazzo floor. A routine clean-up will take care of the mess.
Creating a clean and healthy environment is essential for some places like healthcare facilities and corporate offices; therefore, terrazzo flooring can eliminate any underlying issues commonly found with most floors.
The construction industry is focusing on selecting building materials that are both economical and eco-friendly. Terrazzo is one of the many sustainable building materials that an architect can use today with sustainable features such as its recycled content, reduced carbon emissions through the distribution of locally sourced materials, and other positive environmental impacts.
Many of terrazzo’s components support the “green movement”. Architects can choose between post-consumer and post-industrial recycled aggregates. They can also find epoxy-based products that contain zero levels of VOC content and use a good amount of rapidly renewable materials. Divider strips can be recycled and reused for terrazzo products. And many terrazzo contractors recommend a water-based sealer. All these factors help create a flooring surface that is low maintenance, high in durability, and aesthetically appealing while meeting sustainable design standards.
Terrazzo can help projects obtain LEED accreditation from the U.S. Green Building Council for the use of recycled content and use of materials within 500 miles of a project’s location.