NEW ULM - American Artstone Company, a cast stone and architectural precast manufacturer in New Ulm, was presented with a national award by the Cast Stone Institute (CSI) at the 2013 Annual Convention on Oct. 4.
Artstone received one of two Hardscape Excellence awards for its work on the University of Minnesota BioDiscovery District Plaza in Minneapolis. This achievement is Artstone's 10th CSI Excellence Award in the past eight years.
The work on the BioDiscovery District Plaza was completed under direction of the landscape architectural firm Damon Farber and general contractor M.A. Mortenson Construction Company.
Cathy Higgins, (left) CSI Excellence Committee chair, and Greg Saterdalen, American Artstone business development manager, display the Hardscape Excellence award Artstone won for its work on the University of Minnesota BioDiscovery District Plaza in Minneapolis.
Artstone's scope of work for the plaza included cast stone site-walls, caps and seat-walls used in the streetscape. The pieces were particularly difficult to manufacture because they were comprised of asymmetrical compound curved cast stone walls, seats and caps that needed to conform to the curved features of the plaza and main building entrance.
The judges commented that the use of dark colored cast stone was impressive as were the complex shapes that were precisely well done. The compound curves and consistent coloration supported the excellent craftsmanship. Overall it was a very strong design.
Artstone President Larry Thompson credits the employees for their skilled and creative workmanship. Artstone was involved early in the design process and made recommendations related to profiles, piece sizes, connections, and even the "skateboard deterrent" profile used on the cast stone caps and seats.
Greg Saterdalen, Artstone's business development manager, accepted the award on Artstone's behalf.
"It was an honor to represent Artstone at the convention and accept the award presented by the Cast Stone Institute. The Institute received a record number of project nominations this year and all were absolutely beautiful and representative of the quality required from certified producer members," Saterdalen said.
The Cast Stone Institute defines cast stone as "a highly refined masonry product that provides ornamental or functional features to buildings and other structures." Ingredients in cast stone include "fine and coarse aggregates, Portland cement, mineral oxide color pigments, chemical admixtures and water," according to the association.
American Artstone was founded in 1914 in a Fairfax, Minn., and continues operations today in a state of the art facility in New Ulm.
Artstone prides itself on the ability to provide exceptional architectural solutions for clients. Artstone management is proud of their craftsmen who continue to produce the highest quality, custom cast stone products available.