Author: Peter Colquhoun
The Aussie driveway has become the forgotten outdoor living space of the home. Over the years, it needs to double as hand ball court, a car and dog washing bay and don’t forget its primary purpose of getting vehicles from the street into the garage and then you safely inside.
The decision to put down a new driveway will not only lift the appearance and value of your home but will also have benefits you may not have considered.
In terms of design, the driveway is generally the largest paved surface around the house. As such, it can be used to help distinguish your home from the rest of the street in subtle, sophisticated ways. This is done by simply varying the colour and texture of the concrete from the street giving the entrance to your home individuality. Driveways and entrance pathways should also be considered as frames around front lawns and gardens. Using exposed aggregates of natural stone in concrete will complement other natural surfaces.
Architects also talk about establishing a sense of arrival; pulling into a driveway completes a journey whether that simply be from the nearby shops or office or coming home after a long trip. Hearing and feeling the tyres rolling over a different surface from that of the road outside says “yep, we’re home!”
Recently I travelled to a suburb of Canberra and like all of our major cities flying in you see street after street of houses all with similar roofs and fences, perhaps a pool or satellite dish and all with concrete driveways. On this occasion, I was heading to a home that was doing a minor alteration to the front of their home and seeing what impact it would have.
I followed a couple of homeowners who had decided to go on the Geostone journey and lay a new driveway using a decorative stone aggregate. After meeting them at the local display centre, we discussed the type of look they wanted to achieve. I then had the privilege of going behind the scenes at the local concrete plant where the aggregates are mixed with the concrete. Witnessing the clockwork precision of the trucks pulling in and out keeping their mixes ‘hot’, time-tabled to the minute on their arrival to someone’s home was impressive.
Back at the young couple’s home, the Geostone contractors had made sure that everything was in place; then the trucks arrived. Watching the pour was an orchestrated hive of activity. Concreters as artisans laying a canvas of concrete which would soon reveal the beautiful stone aggregates chosen only a few days earlier. In the space of an hour this average suburban bungalow was now the envy of the street. You will never see a more immediate transformation to the front of a home.
The thing to remember when dealing with concrete is that you have a large range to select from in order to get the finish to suit most styles of architecture and design. It can then be laid in many locations in Australia.
A Geostone driveway from Holcim is the result of a team of experts helping you every step of the way. From the selection of the concrete to programming the pour to revealing the finish then standing by their work. Each new driveway has its own unique quality because of the organic ingredients and aggregates used – that means the front of your home is designed to suit you & even reflect your personality.
Remember you only get one chance at a first impression. When it comes to welcoming people to your home that starts with your driveway.