Attractive Pervious Concrete –Oxymoron or Reality?

Pervious concrete – porous yet strong concrete that allows water to soak through – has been around for a long time. In most applications its utilitarian appeal usually trumps any aesthetic appeal. However, to trained eyes in the decorative concrete industry the puffed rice cereal look is not only ugly, but the rough surface makes it difficult to walk on, especially in high heels or barefeet.

Colorado Hardscapes appreciates the benefits, including the LEED requirements, of pervious concrete. We also strive for innovation in concrete. In an attempt to offer LEED and other sustainable projects something more elegant than dressing up pervious concrete with integral or topical color, something that would add curb appeal along with the benefits of free-draining paving, our research and development department has been tinkering with a few solutions. While these solutions are still in the R & D stage, they offer a lot of promise to marry the aesthetics with the practical.

The one we are most excited about is shown to the right. Using Colorado Hardscapes’ Navajo White Sandscape Texture™ and a series of precise sawcuts an aesthetically unique and functional pervious surface was created. The benefits? The high-class finish of Sandscape Texture™, a pervious surface that drains at a similar rate to the traditional pervious concrete, and the SRI value of the Navajo White color (tested at an SRI of 60)! This type of application is a system that can apply regardless of the selected color and texture, so suddenly the choices become almost endless. Can you hear the LEED points racking up?

To see this sample in action, visit our Design Center at 8085 E. Harvard Ave., Denver, CO 80231. For more information about pervious concrete, either traditional or this technique, contact Karen Van Heukelem at or John Buteyn at or 303-750-8200.

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