A trend in today’s hardscape design is to create impressive outdoor living spaces. Outdoor rooms framed in structures and creations from brick pavers and natural stones – often a pleasant blend of both. In Madison WI, that trend is modified by the climate. Expansive outdoor rooms and patio kitchens may not be as inviting as in the warmer south.
Never the less, the use of brick pavers and paving stones to create welcoming spaces in gaining popularity. The one element each creation has in common is the need for detailed advanced planning. Even the slightest detail overlook in the early stages can result in costly and frustrating delays and changes.
The Building Blocks of a Hardscape Design
Reports from throughout the industry echo the same sentiments – “homeowners want to get to their backyards and not have to dealwith a lot.” The less maintenance required, the better the backyard.
Once a slab of concrete where you fired up the grill, patios have evolved into places to relax and unwind. The more you bring the comforts of the indoors to the backyard, the better. Indoor design has had a real impact on outdoor living.
No longer is your patio limited to a floor of 4×8-inch bricks, old-style cobble stones or a gray slab. Brick pavers are available in many sizes, shapes and colors, including 6×12-inch, 12×12-inch and even larger. There are blended colors, stains and stamped products. The common square and rectangular pavers can be enhanced with hexagons, pentagons or other shapes to create unique personal designs.
Building From The Ground Up
Once you and your hardscape designer agree on a plan on paper, the work really begins. Here are several steps that go into creating a long-lasting project that adds true value to your property.
- Detailed survey of the site – Using the latest in electronic tools, the site is surveyed to generate a plan for proper drainage, etc.
- Total site review – How the site blends with the overall landscape, adjacent buildings, neighbors, etc.
- Review the specific required permits – Do you need building permits for various stages of the project? A professional contractor will know and will be ready to obtain what’s needed.
- 3D Visuals – With the latest three dimensional modeling you can “see” the project before an ounce of dirt is moved.
- Select shapes, colors and styles – Before anything is put into motion the brick pavers for each element of the project are selects.
- Final review – All the selections for the design can be plugged into the 3D drawing so a “finished” project can be reviewed and agreed upon.
The use of computer technology for hardscape design takes the guess-work from the early stages. Designers agree, clients need to be educated on what can and cannot be done, how long it takes and what’s involved. Dozens of magazines, videos and TV productions get homeowners excited about hardscape design potential.
But, they also make it look easier than it is. And, they seldom detail the behind the scenes planning required or the true length of time it takes. Creating a massive outdoor living room in a weekend is possible – when you have an unlimited TV budget and a crew of 40-50 people on site 10-12 hours a day. But it isn’t practical.
Go With a Pro For Lasting Hardscape Design
Site prep and expert installation of brick pavers is the bottom line that spells value in the final creation. Pavers installed correctly maintain their integrity and add immediate impact whether in a simple walkway, patio or driveway. Poor installation results in shifting and heaving of individual pavers or whole sections. Madison WI winters are not friendly to improperly laid patios, walks and drives. With a DIY project, do you have no guarantee you won’t be releveling year after year? A professional contractor will guarantee its workmanship for up to five years.
What a pro bring to the project a DIY homeowner lacks:
- Years of experience installing hardscapes
- Trained crews
- Relationships with stone suppliers – meaning better selections, better prices and on-time delivery
- *The required, specialized equipment to complete the job – excavators, compactors, backhoes, stone cutting saws and drills, trucks for bringing in supplies and hauling out debris (and a place to put it).
*This may be the most important element determining the lasting quality of a hardscape installation.
Today’s hardscape design leads to an array of creations from brick pavers and natural stones. Call or email Marvin Martinez at Martin’s Brick Pavers, for details on how you can enjoy a long-lasting hardscape design with your home in Madison WI.