Paving An Eco-Empire
Brent explains his company’s ambitious mission this way, “Concrete has helped shape civilizations from as far back as ancient Egypt and Rome. Today, it is indispensible in the development of infrastructure, industry, and housing across the entire planet. Pervious is revolutionizing many long-held concrete applications.”
“Pervious concrete is an extremely porous, lowimpact development technique that allows rainwater to pass directly through its paved surface. Pervious has little or no fine rock material and promotes just enough cohesion of the concrete’s larger particles to preserve its integrity. The voids present in pervious concrete allow water to run through the surface and into the ground,“ explains Brent Magee. Pervious concrete has already garnered much respect in the field of construction. In fact, pervious is recommended by the EPA for the management of storm water runoff as a Best Management Practice because it helps to reduce runoff and protect water quality by allowing groundwater to be recharged. By eliminating the need for retention ponds and other storm water management solutions, this amazing pavement technology is also single-handedly responsible for lowering the overall project costs while maximizing land use efficiency.
Because they are light in color and have an open-cell structure, pervious concrete pavements don’t absorb and store heat and then radiate it back into the environment like a typical asphalt surface. Brent adds, “The open void structure of the pervious pavement allows cooler temperatures from below the concrete to cool the pavement, helping to reduce the heat-island effect found in so many urban areas today.” This prevalent heatisland effect can also be greatly reduced by planting trees that offer shade and help to cool urban environments. Mandala Concrete’s pervious pavements help to protect these shade trees by allowing more air and water to reach the roots—even in parking lots and other paved areas.
“Pervious requires a very precise, complex application process. I trained with Scott Erickson, the leading expert in the country and National Ready Mixed Concrete Association (NRMCA) trainer on pervious concrete,” says Brent. Presently, Brent Magee is the only certified pervious concrete technician in Louisiana. He is also LEED AP certified and a member of the Horizon Initiative Water Management Committee and the American Concrete Institute Flatwork Finisher Program. When asked how he first became interested in pervious concrete, Mr. Magee gives much of the credit to Kyle Ardoin. “Kyle was the one who talked me into starting the company. As the Executive Director of the Concrete & Aggregates Association of Louisiana, he held the first certification courses for pervious concrete in Louisiana. Kyle introduced pervious to the engineers, architects, and construction industry throughout the state. Now he’s the First Assistant Secretary of State to Louisiana Secretary of State Tom Schedler.”
Every day, Brent preaches the virtues of pervious concrete, a material he thinks will change the foundation of Louisiana construction. He works hand-in-hand with Gerard Vitrano, the quality control manager at Lafarge, the only company in the state that produces pervious concrete. Together, Mandala and Lafarge continue to share their knowledge of this revolutionary material with forward-thinking developers across the state.
Founded in 2008, Mandala Concrete is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council, the St. Tammany West Chamber of Commerce, and the Better Business Bureau. Under Brent’s leadership, the firm has completed pervious pavements for high-profile projects such as Brad Pitt’s Make It Right Foundation and Jackson Barracks. Mandala Concrete also paved the tarmac at the New Orleans Lakefront Airport and is presently paving 9000 sq. ft. of pervious concrete at the New Orleans BioInnovation Center on Canal Street.
Mandala Concrete, LLC