Is concrete modern?
While concrete has the appearance of an advanced technology, based upon theoretical understanding of stresses and chemistry of cements, knowledge held by trained experts, reinforced concrete is also at the same time a simple process that can be, and in many parts of the world is, executed by people with no theoretical knowledge what so ever. […] It is the ease with which concrete lends itself to [intransparent] self-building that makes it hard to sustain the notion that we are dealing with an advanced material. S. 28/29, cf. Concrete and Culture: A Material History
In the 1999 earthquakes in Turkey it was the newest buildings in the damage district that suffered the most damage. A new term had emerged in recent years to describe the problem, not with old buildings, but with new reinforced concrete buildings: “Pancake Collapse.”
The pervasive image of floors piled one on top of another with the walls fallen away completely was heart-wrenching when one realized that between those floors lay the bodies of the occupants – thousands and sometimes tens-of-thousands of people. cf. Preventing Pancake Collapses