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September 29
Preprufe seals Crossrail, one of the most complex projects in the UK

Pictured: Canary Wharf Crossrail station


The project

Crossrail is one of the UK’s largest and most complex construction projects. Crossrail is expected to transform the rail network in London and the South East, reducing journey times and increasing rail capacity in central London by 10 percent.

Since work commenced in May 2009, 42 kilometers of new tunnels have been constructed beneath the streets of London, reaching depths of 30 metres. There will be 40 stations in total providing services for Crossrail passengers.

GCP Applied Technologies Waterproofing Solutions

GCP is the leading supplier of waterproofing on all major Crossrail Stations. To date, GCP has provided bespoke waterproofing solutions, detailing and site support to 8 major Crossrail stations – Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Pudding Mill Lane, Canary Wharf and Custom House.

Tottenham Court Road

As part of the construction of the new £1 billion Tottenham Court Road Station, more than 2000 m2 of GCP’s Preprufe® waterproofing membrane were chosen to deliver the high level of required watertightness.

Constructed by BBMV (a consortium of Balfour Beatty, Alpine BeMo Tunnelling, Morgan Sindall and Vinci Construction) for Transport for London, the new Crossrail station at Tottenham Court Road is the length of four football pitches and three storeys underground. With long term waterproofing performance, reliability and success at high-profile projects worldwide – Preprufe® offered the perfect solution to ensure waterproof protection for this.

To complete the system solution, GCP also supplied Bituthene® Liquid Membrane, AT System PVC waterstops, as well as Adcor® hydro-expansive and injectable waterstops.


Liverpool Street

Over 5000 m2 of Preprufe® waterproofing membrane has provided exceptional water tightness, below ground protection and proven performance at Liverpool Street station.

This new £300 million development, awarded to engineers Mott Macdonald/Arup and contractor Laing O’Rourke, is located below the existing Liverpool Street and Moorgate stations and Finsbury Circus. Two new ticket halls, Broadgate and Moorgate are being constructed, as well as a 40-metre deep shaft on Blomfield Street to accommodate ventilation, electrical, mechanical and systems equipment for the station. This area known as Bloomfield box, spans over a quarter mile in one of the busiest parts of London.

Preprufe® was the obvious choice for confined sites, for its reputation in providing a reliable waterproofing solution, preventing water ingress through and around the base slab. Its patented Advanced Bond Technology™ enables concrete to aggressively adhere to Preprufe®, forming a unique intimate seal which prevents any water migration between the waterproofing and the structure, substantially reducing the risk of leaks.

Utilising an advanced acrylic surface coating developed by GCP, the Preprufe® membrane also simplifies the installation process by removing multiple layers and complicated detailing. Protective layers of concrete or boards are eliminated, reducing the depth of excavation and spoil, whilst the number of materials to be sourced are minimised, all accelerating the critical path of the project programme and ensuring the project was delivered on time.

Approximately 4,000 m2 of Preprufe® 300R/160R, 1,500 m2 of Preprufe® 800PA, and 250 m2 of Silcor® liquid waterproofing were installed to provide exceptional waterproofing protection to the tunnel shafts, piled walls, base slabs and roof.

Canary Wharf

At the £500 million development of Canary Wharf Crossrail station, the 6,000 m2 application of Preprufe® waterproofing membrane has ensured the site remains watertight – holding back up to 10 metres of surrounding Thames dock water.

Built in the West India North Dock by Canary Wharf Contractors Limited, construction of the new station has proven a complex engineering, technical and logistical challenge. Since construction began in May 2009, some 300,000 tonnes of material have been excavated, 375,000 tonnes of concrete poured and 1,000 piles driven to extract 100 million litres of dock water – the equivalent of forty Olympic-size swimming pools.

As part of the ‘top down’ construction programme, a four-level basement was completed to a depth of 28 metres. After draining the site and constructing a deep anchored cofferdam to provide a dry work environment, the next key step on the critical path was the waterproofing for the base slab. This needed to be installed quickly and effectively, in difficult conditions, to avoid delays to the following works.

In addition to its waterproofing performance, Preprufe® was chosen for its ease of application and speed. The membrane is unrolled and loose laid, and can be applied even on wet substrates. The laps are self-adhesive and the whole installation can be achieved without welding or other special equipment. Once installed, no screed or other protective layers are required - the rebar installation and concreting can follow immediately.

Specified and installed at some of the most challenging waterproofing projects worldwide, Preprufe® proved the perfect system for lead designer Arup and contractor Expanded Piling, a subsidiary of Laing O’Rourke. No other system on the market better protects a substructure from the harmful effects of water, vapour and gas than Preprufe®.

For protection of the concrete joints and continuity with the piled walls, GCP also supplied a range of complementary products and systems including Adcor® 500S and Adcor® 550MI, to provide hydro-expansive and injectable joint protection. The cold applied Bituthene® Liquid Membrane and Servitite® AT240, a specially formulated PVC waterstop system, were also supplied to complete the project’s comprehensive waterproofing specification.

Other critical stations

As well as the above mentioned stations, GCP provided comprehensive waterproofing solutions for the other critical stations, including Bond Street, Farringdon, Whitechapel, Pudding Mill Lane and Custom House.

GCP offered bespoke waterproofing solutions providing continuity at the critical aspencts of the project. A full package was delivered consisting of Silcor® liquid waterproofing membranes, Adprufe® integrally waterproof concrete system and a full range of Adcor® hydrophilic and PVC waterstops available for concrete joint protection.

Designed to link with Preprufe®, Silcor® seamless waterproofing is a range of spray and hand applied liquid waterproof membranes, which provides highly durable waterproofing and structural protections without laps or complex detailing.

Adprufe® integrally waterproof concrete system, comprises of an innovative liquid admixture that significantly reduces both the permeability and drying shrinkage of concrete. It can be combined with GCP membranes and Hydroduct® cavity drain systems for enhanced protection in critical applications.

GCP’s hydrophilic waterstops unique ability to act as a continuously active seal due to its hydrophilic properties, means it works better than conventional waterstop systems, preventing water entry through joints in concrete sub-structures.

Set for completion in 2018, the Crossrail project - sealed in Preprufe® pre-applied waterproofing membrane - will provide a vastly improved transport service which will benefit London, its inhabitants, and visitors for generations to come.

September 23
VIDEO: The Bowling Ball Test on STRUX® macro fibers in concrete


In this video, GCP scientist Dr. Ezgi Yurdakul, Ph.D assesses the performance of STRUX® 90/40 macro synthetic fibers in concrete, carrying load after cracking.

"(Fibers) don't necessarily prevent cracking," Dr. Yurdakul said. "Once cracking happens, however, the (STRUX® fibers) hold the system together to provide integrity."

This is crucial for the concrete to supply necessary resistance to load under cracking.

In the video, the concrete slab without STRUX® cracks into pieces, under the bowling ball drop. When she applies the same test to a similar slab containing STRUX® 90/40 macro synthetic fibers, no visible cracks form on the surface. Only minimal cracking appears underneath, but the integrity itself and overall shape of the concrete slab remain intact to carry desired load.

This basic experiment demonstrates how STRUX® macro synthetic fibers provide enhanced durability and superior crack control.

Other benefits of STRUX® fibers include faster and safer construction and lightweight reinforcement. These synthetic fibers are also non-corrosive, unlike welded wire or steel reinforcement alternatives.


ezgiYurdakulHeadshot.PNGEzgi Yurdakul is a concrete scientist in the R&D Division of GCP Applied Technologies, in Cambridge, MA. She received her Ph.D from Iowa State University, Ames, IA. She is currently the Vice Chair of ACI Committee 211, Proportioning Concrete Mixtures; Secretary of ACI Subcommittee 211-A, Proportioning-Editorial; and a member of ACI Committees 212, Chemical Admixtures; 325, Concrete Pavements; 506, Shotcreting; 544, Fiber-Reinforced Concrete; as well as ASA committees. Her research interests include shotcrete, mixture design optimization, chemical admixtures, and performance-based specifications for concrete.

September 21
GCP waterproofing "saves" SF Transbay Transit Center
At least 30 feet below the water table, the hydraulic forces compressed the worksite on all sides and made the walls immediately weep, when the extraction pumps, otherwise chugging around the clock, stopped working. So close to the Bay Area, the stresses at work were immense on waterproofing the gargantuan Transbay Transit Center in downtown San Francisco.

The problem: an asphalt-based fabric for below-grade waterproofing could not cure under the adverse jobsite conditions. The $4.185 billion project had plunged two and a half months behind schedule.

Luckily, project lead for the waterproofing contractor Dean Edwards knew what to do.

"We brought (GCP Applied Technologies) to the table," Edwards said. "We explained that Preprufe® is a pre-applied, zero-cure waterproofing membrane. No wait and proven across hundreds of major infrastructure projects over the past 20+ years. What’s more, I believe in it. By taking curing off the table, we knew we could expedite the schedule."

Much like its aid in sealing the Sacramento Kings' arena in no time and keeping one of the largest infrastructure projects in the Middle East—the Haramain High Speed Railway—on track, GCP's Preprufe once again proved it is the "gold standard of the business," said Edwards.

With more than 500 million square feet installed across hundreds of high-profile public and private projects worldwide, Preprufe waterproofing membrane is designed to deliver…
  • Fast, easy and straightforward installation
  • A robust product design able to withstand wet weather
  • Permanent adhesive bonding of the strong HDPE barrier to the concrete
  • A clean, neat, asphalt- and clay-free product that is highly resistant to contaminated and aggressive soils
  • Immediately trafficable with same-day rebar setting and tying

The Preprufe fully installed, the massive job is back on schedule and Edwards now has time to rest easy on the dry jobsite.

"We’ve been actually waiting on the general contractor to catch up with us."

Preprufe outperforms the competition

GCP Applied Technologies’ patented Advanced Bond Technology™ enables Preprufe to adhere directly to dry or wet concrete and to form an intimate and impenetrable seal. Unlike mechanically attached bonding technologies which risk water migration between the mesh interface and concrete, Preprufe is designed with synthetic adhesive layers and is combined with a robust HDPE film, providing a permanent physical barrier that protects structures against water and moisture, and chloride and sulphate attack even if their concentration changes over time.

Preprufe is a durable and flexible waterproofing membrane that withstands harsh site conditions for a longer period of time than competitive waterproofing membranes. It can be walked on during installation without risking damage and is considerably faster and easier to install and detail than mechanically attached membranes. Protective layers of concrete or boards are eliminated, reducing the depth of excavation and spoil, whilst the number of additional materials required with mechanically attached technologies is minimized.

>> Read full article on architectmagazine.com SF Transbay Transit Center builders applied GCP's Preprufe® waterproofing membrane when nothing else would work.
September 20
VIDEO: Premier Specialty Concrete Chemical capabilities


GCP Applied Technologies' highly skilled workforce develops and researches cutting-edge techniques for innovative discoveries in specialty construction chemicals—particularly, advanced concrete technology.


TYTRO® Shotcrete S​ystem​ offers specialty shotcrete admixtures that are formulated for shotcrete mixes to achieve high performance characteristics and meet project requirements. Due to their synergetic benefit, they are formulated to be used together.

TYTRO® RC 430 (​rheology control agent) advantages:

  • Lower installed material cost vs. silica fume
  • Minimum rebound and dust
  • Faster strength development
  • Larger layer thickness in single pass

STRUX® patented macro synthetic fibers

STRUX® macro-synthetic fibers are high performing proprietary engineered copolymer fibers used as a replacement for steel fibers and wire mesh reinforcement in underground shotcrete construction. STRUX® is added to shotcrete to provide toughness, impact, and fatigue properties. In addition to its superior crack control and resistance, STRUX® also eliminates corrosion issues or safety concerns associated with the use of steel fibers.

STRUX® BT50 advantages:

  • Faster and safer construction
  • Lightweight reinforcement
  • Superior crack control
  • Non-corroding
  • Enhanced durability

Verifi® in-transit concrete delivery system

Verifi® is a patented concrete management system providing sophisticated, automated process monitoring and control during transit from the ready-mix plant to the jobsite.


  • Measure and correct slump
  • Monitor and report on concrete management
  • Track driver compliance to company policies
  • Monitor and report operational performance
  • Track customer wait times
  • Improved time efficiency
  • Reduction in back charges/returned loads
  • Increased quality/cost efficiency
  • Cement reduction
  • Contractor benefits

High-performance concrete admixtures

Adva® 198

  • Advanced rheology control
  • Faster wet out time
  • Superior air control
  • Easier placement
  • Enhanced strength

Focused on knowledge and innovation

GCP's X-ray diffraction labs enable staff to be thought leaders in the industry.

The cement chemistry labs help customers solve problems.

GCP's microscopy labs are the most advanced in the industry. Here, scientists conduct sophisticated testing for superior and ongoing customer support.

Focused on partnerships on which to build the future

GCP has 90 concrete lab locations across the globe. With a diverse and highly skilled workforce, GCP has filed nearly 900 patents to date. And they're actively researching and developing new technologies for future innovations.

GCP has applied its advanced technologies to many of the world's most recognizable landmarks

  • Georgia Aquarium, Atlanta, Georgia
    Strux 90/40 synthetic macrofiber reinforcement

  • Mercedes Benz Museum, Stuttgart, Germany
    Eclipse® Floor 200 shrinkage reducing admixture

  • Metropolitan Miami 2, Miami, Florida
    Strux 90/40 Synthetic Macrofiber reinforcement

  • Ponte Estaiada Bridge, Sao Paula, Brazil

  • James F. Battin U.S. Courthouse, Billings, Montana
    Adva® Cast

  • The Broad Museum, Los Angeles, Calif.
    Adva® Cast

  • Oscar Niemeyer Museum, Curitiba, Brazil

  • Haven Avenue Bridge
    Adva® Cast

  • Sydney Opera House, Sydney, Australia
    DCI® Corrosion Inhibitor

  • Publix, Mixed Use Parking Garage, Tampa, Florida
    Adva® Cast

  • GCP's highly skilled workforce develops and researches cutting-edge techniques for innovative discoveries in advanced concrete technology.
September 14
Construction that withstands desert conditions in the Middle East


Hundreds of concrete buildings are under construction in the Middle East. Yet how do construction crews protect them against the ravages of a blistering desert climate? Iltaz Alam, building envelope expert for GCP Applied Technologies, provides some answers.​

The Middle East is seeing a construction boom with more than a trillion in USD of major projects planned for completion by 2030, Alam said. As durable as concrete is in below grade applications, the conditions in the region present a severe test for the material.

Concrete challenges in a Middle Eastern climate

  • Extremes of seasonal and daily temperature
  • Wide range of ambient humidity and moisture from hot humid exteriors to air-conditioned interiors
  • Chlorides and sulfates in the groundwater

Without the protection offered by a high performance waterproofing membrane, concrete is vulnerable to structural deterioration in such aggressive conditions. Chemical, UV, and mechanical damage can all compromise a system’s effectiveness. When specifying a below grade waterproofing system it’s crucial to consider how resistant it is. It's especially important when results range from stress cracks to total flooding which can be astronomically expensive.

Rebar corrosion is a significant issue for reinforced concrete structures in the Middle East, with chloride ingress through airborne salts or below grade chlorides and sulphates acting as the most frequent cause. In hotter climates, the process is faster with every extra 10°C doubling the rate of diffusion. As the steel corrodes, the concrete cracks, making the problem worse. Full protection can only be achieved using a physical barrier to water infiltration such as a chemically resistant bonded waterproofing membrane.

Well-performing projects

Products and materials are expected to deliver long-term performance for new buildings and civil engineering projects in the Middle East, many of which are being delivered with a service life of 100+ years.

The multi-billion dollar Doha Metro Rail system in Qatar is no exception. It saw the specification of more than 1,000,000 m2 of high performance Preprufe® pre-applied below grade waterproofing system to protect against groundwater, with a 120-year design life.

Another rail project, this time linking the holy cities of Saudi Arabia, the Haramain High Speed Railway had the challenge of building four new stations in just four years, in extreme heat and desert conditions. Preprufe® 300R waterproofing membrane was selected to provide exceptional protection to all built elements below and above the water table.

The Preprufe advantage

Workmanship is essential in achieving a durable structure. Concrete and membrane installation must be supervised by qualified and experienced personnel. Systems which minimise installation risk, therefore, are highly beneficial in tough desert conditions.

With its single layer adhesive application directly to wet or dry cement, Preprufe® creates an impenetrable seal and offers simple and efficient detailing. It reduces the risk of human error in installation, it saves time, requires few ancillary products and reduces cost of site supervision.

Every new construction project in the Middle East is vital to the region’s continued growth and development. The impact of any failure is significant. Specifying a waterproofing system that is proven to cope with the climate’s demands is an absolute must for a long and reliable service life.

For more about the full range of Preprufe® products visit preprufe.com. For general enquiries including technical, on- or off-site support, please email preprufe@gcpat.com.

August 30
Preprufe® seals priceless Islamic Art below water table


The Project

Poised at the end of the corniche in the harbor of Doha, Qatar, the Museum of Islamic Art rises from the waters of the Arabian Gulf. Designed by renowned architect I. M. Pei, the Museum’s striking exterior conceals one of the finest collections of Islamic Art in the world.

The museum found its primary inspiration in the Mosque of Ahmed Ibn Tulun in Cairo and was built through the combined efforts of several firms around the globe. The design reflects a modern interpretation of Islamic architecture and mirrors Qatar’s vision as a bridge between past and present, East and West.

GCP Applied Technologies brought a multi-national collaboration into this project and coached the partnership formed among an American-based architect, European- and Turkish-based contractors and local site teams.

The Challenge

The climate and corrosive salt environment of the Persian Gulf created a number of project challenges. Constructed on reclaimed land, the museum’s foundation rests below the water table, subjecting foundations to highly aggressive chloride and sulfate conditions which can quickly deteriorate the concrete and significantly reduce the life of the structure.

The GCP Solution

Deeply involved in the project, the GCP team recommended Preprufe® 300R waterproofing membrane applied below the slab to prevent water migration around the substructure.

Bituthene® 8000 HC waterproofing membrane was chosen to protect the substructure walls from the harsh ground environment.

Bituthene® Liquid Membrane and Servipak® protection boards rounded out the package. GCP also provided extensive training for site engineers and operatives on proper product application procedures. The solution was not only well suited for the corrosive salt environment of the Persian Gulf, but also for Qatar’s severe heat – often in excess of 40°C (104°F).

The Result

A continuous waterproofing system, fully-bonded to the structural concrete surrounding the substructure and creating a positive and permanent barrier against the corrosive environment.


When viewed from different angles, the Museum seems to float in the sea, connected to land only by a pedestrian walkway, a pair of vehicular bridges, and a causeway. The first of its kind in the Gulf, the 45,000m2 (~484,000 SF) structure greeted the public in November 2008.

August 29
GCP waterproofing Alaskan Way Viaduct


The Alaskan Way Viaduct—a $4.5 billion, 2-mile-long tunnel—boring deep beneath downtown Seattle, has its share of challenges. But the construction crew has got waterproofing covered.

GCP Applied Technologies was commissioned to waterproof the north and south portals, plus the operations buildings on either side of the tunnel.

GCP applied Preprufe® 300R, Preprufe® SCS and Bituthene® membran​es to the south portal, with the lowest points about 80 feet in the water table. There is over 350,000 square feet of Preprufe SCS, 600,000 square feet of 300R, and about 150,000 square feet of Bituthene on the portals and operations buildings.

The waterproofing installation began in June 2013, and is scheduled to finish mid-2016. GCP was selected over other manufacturers because of its ability to apply products in the very challenging and wet conditions, even amidst brackish and contaminated soils throughout the project. The job is essentially at sea level.

The north portal project started about a year after its sister south. The north and south portals are each about 2,000 LF long, starting at grade, and ending up about 80 feet deep.

Both portals are extremely complex structures, with multiple lanes of highway merging into different levels of the tunnel.

​​The contractor has been very vocal about what a success story the waterproofing has been on this major project. ​Neither wet winters, leaky ground conditions, nor problems with other trades have impacted GCP's applications of Preprufe® 300R, Preprufe® SCS and Bituthene® on the Alaskan Way Viaduct.

WATCH: Preprufe® SCS in action

August 26
GCP's Brian Miller to present at Colorado Precast Seminar


GCP Applied Technologies' resident precast expert Brian Miller will present two lectures at the High Performance Precast Concrete Building Enclosures Seminar, September 14, 2016, at the Denver Marriott Tech Center, in Denver, Colo.

The first presentation, "Discover High Performance Precast," will open the conference at 8:15 a.m.

Brian will then present a talk on "High Performance Enclosure Systems," later that day, from 10-11 a.m. MDT.

Attendees will receive a certificate for 3.5 PDH. This seminar has also been approved for 3.5 AIA HSW LU's. Space is limited. Please register early.


Brian Miller, P.E., MBA, LEED AP, has earned nearly three decades of experience in the precast concrete and concrete materials industries. He currently serves as the global marketing director of precast concrete for GCP Applied Technologies. He holds degrees in civil engineering and construction technologies.

The seminar is hosted by PCI Mountain States. Established in 2015, PCI Mountain States is headquartered in Denver, Colorado and serves the states of Colorado, Idaho, Montana and Utah.

Its mission is to coordinate and provide a network of organizations and educational resources to help create, improve and grow the precast/prestressed concrete industry.

August 17
Proper installation of Grace Ice & Water Shield®


In 1978, GCP Applied Technologies — formerly Grace Construction Products — developed the first self-adhered roofing underlayment: Grace Ice & Water Shield®.

Nearly four decades later, it's still the product building professionals trust to protect their projects. It's also peace of mind for homeowners.

Once installed, the revolutionary membrane protects your home, by its three crown jewels — it sticks to the deck, sticks to itself forming watertight laps, and it seals around fasteners — for a barrier impenetrable to wind-driven rain, ice dams or anything else Mother Nature can precipitate upon a roof.

If installed properly, this reliable roofing underlayment can save homeowners $18,000 in reroofing costs. Here's how…

Proper installation of Grace Ice & Water Shield®

The Conventional Method

  1. Cut the membrane into 3-5 m (10-15 ft.) lengths and re-roll loosely. Peel back 300-600 mm (1-2 ft.) of release liner, align membrane.

  2. Peel the release liner from the membrane. Press the membrane in place with heavy hand pressure.

  3. Minimum overlap guidelines are set by the manufacturer. GCP requires side laps to be a minimum of 90 mm (3.5 in.) and end laps a minimum of 150 mm (6 in.).

The Back-Roll Method

Some contractors prefer the back-roll method. The back-roll technique can go quicker than the conventional method since you can lay down the membrane in just a few minutes!

  1. Start by unrolling a 3-5 m (10-15 ft.) piece of membrane, leaving the release liner in place. Align the membrane and roll in the intended direction of the membrane application.

  2. Carefully cut the release liner on top of the roll in the cross direction, being careful not to cut the membrane.

  3. Peel back about 150 mm (6 in.) of the release liner in the opposite direction of the intended membrane application, exposing the black adhesive.

  4. Hold the release liner with one hand and pull the roll along the deck with the release liner, leaving the applied membrane behind.

  5. Stop frequently to press the membrane in place with heavy hand pressure, smoothing the membrane toward the outer edge.

  6. When finished with the roll, go back and remove the remaining release liner.

  7. Smooth to the edge.

Click below for detailed drawings displaying proper installation at eaves, valleys, skylights, chimneys, and other important details…

August 11
GCP presents NEW Shotcrete Technologies at Brisbane Mining Conference

GCP will be sharing "New Technologies in Chemical Admixtures for Use in Shotcrete" at the Eastern Australian Ground Control Group’s (EAGCG) conference, October 13-14 in Brisbane. The EAGCG conference is the latest in a series of "new technology" themed workshops. The coming event is tailored specifically for the mining industry and will focus on cost-effective solutions.

GCP’s fully advanced shotcrete system helps mine owners reduce shotcrete operating costs, minimize excavation downtime, achieve desired technical properties, and meet safety standards. This TYTRO® Shotcrete System offers specialty admixtures and fibers that can be formulated for mixes to meet your project and performance requirements.

2290nick@grace.jpgThe Speaker

Niki Jackson is the Regional Manager for Shotcrete for Australia and New Zealand. He is based in Sydney and travels extensively throughout the region to provide technical support for civil and mining projects.

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