Originally Posted by etwman
Yes we are still using Techo-Bloc, but a vast amount of natural stone as well. It will be interesting to watch the world of concrete manufacturered products over the next 5 years or so. The entry level pavers will always have a place, but manufacturers are getting into this wetcast product line, which mind you pushes up into the $6-$8/sf mark. For that you can get really nice natural stone product. The price of cement, aggrigate, etc. continues to rise quickly. You can't convince me that the wet cast market is sustainable at this rate with material cost increase, I don't care how innovative you are. Natural flagstone is natural flagstone, timeless, and will forever be that way. And when wetcast, or high end pavers, reach the point that they are double what natural product costs, something will give.
I wouldn't put all my money on pavers in the long run. There a stress cracks in that industry, acquistions, and only so many ways you can slice the pie to sell product. A 6x6 or 6x9 paver is just that, how many people can make them?
Thats a very good point. I have often pondered that myself, as in how many different people can be making what is essentially the SAME thing, how many different ways? And what way does Company A make pavers that is better than Cmpany B to the point that there is a significant price difference between the 2? I like the natural products myself too, and I feel that (in my area at least) the market seems to be shifting naturally more that way. Whereas in the past I would get questions about doing a block wall or a paver patio/walkway, people now seem more interested in the "irregular" look of flagstone, We actually did 4 jobs this year that incorporated a flagstone path through a garden, and I have another for August that I just booked today. We have yet to touch a pallet of pavers this year....