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By 2022, the international limestone market is projected to quarry more than 5 billion tons of limestone to meet global demand. The Asian-Pacific region continues to significantly outpace similar markets in other countries due in part to the region’s steady economic growth, real estate investment upticks and subsequent construction boom. These countries are also well-established exporters to wholesale distributors across the world, including North America, based largely on price point and availability.
While commoditizing limestone may be a workable solution for some applications, the rising trend toward spec’ing natural stone and including unique slabs, veneers and landscaping into luxury home construction and remodeling tends to support domestic sourcing. Architects, contractors, distributors and homeowners in the United States are simply not comfortable with ceding control of selecting limestone quality and characteristics for these projects.
But it’s not just a power play. Sourcing limestone from the United States provides several key advantages that, taken in total, provide more value than a bargain basement import price.
1. Environmental Impact
In addition to limestone’s low embodied energy contributing a nominal amount to a construction project’s overall energy consumption, there’s transportation to consider when assessing environmental impact. Domestic limestone is generally available within a reasonable distance from a jobsite. Compared to overseas imports, this greatly reduces depletion of natural resources like crude oil and air quality, and minimizes stress to the nation’s infrastructure.
The cost of the limestone itself is only one portion of its total expense. Hefty shipping costs from overseas and import tariffs are widely variable, which could ultimately result in a costly surprise and blown project budget. Add to that the lead time required to get limestone from overseas, and any change in project scope — like unanticipated timeline acceleration — could mean expedited shipping and even higher shipping fees. Sourcing domestic limestone largely negates these concerns, and gives everyone involved in the project a better sense of limestone cost containment and delivery timing from inception through installation.
3. Quality Assurance
One of the biggest wild cards in having limestone imported is quality. Is the grade, durability and density as expected? Is the color accurate? Are the number and types of unique characteristics (veining, pitting, etc.) acceptable? All are important questions, but here’s an even larger one: what happens if any or all of these quality benchmarks are wrong? There’s no easy solution.
Reputable stateside quarries, like Eden-Valders Stone, will partner with you to understand and meet your common or custom project needs, stand behind the quality of their limestone, and promptly deliver physical samples to aid in decision-making and streamline the entire process. Further, the deep knowledge and demonstrated expertise stone craftsmen at domestic quarries offer customers is readily accessible — no major time zone or language barriers — and unparalleled in global limestone markets.
4. Support for American Quarries
The “Made In the U.S.A.” seal is both a pride point and important differentiator for many when deciding upon a limestone provider. Supporting domestic quarries ensures you have the best product, service and project outcomes possible — now and in the future.
Limestone sourced in the United States is becoming popular, especially Type III dolomitic limestone, for luxury home construction and remodeling. It offers a true value-add for your project on several levels that overseas products simply can’t rival. Discover the difference for yourself! Click the button below to request free limestone samples today.