Media Release

Penetron Concrete Waterproofing Protects New Elementary School Classrooms in Mississippi


The $1.6 million addition of two new classrooms at the Laurel Upper Elementary School in Laurel, Mississippi, was completed at the end of July 2023, in time for the start of the new school year. PENETRON ADMIX SB, a crystalline waterproofing admixture, was specified to protect all concrete elements exposed to groundwater from deterioration.

Nestled in the heart of Southern Mississippi’s Pine Belt Region, the town of Laurel (pop. 17,100) was founded in 1882 as a lumber town and is known today for its picturesque oak-lined streets, stunning architecture, a nationally-renowned art museum, and a vibrant downtown center.

The Laurel School District has over 2,800 students in grades pre-K-12 and administers 3 pre-schools, 5 elementary schools, 2 middle schools and one high school. Laurel Upper Elementary School serves grades 4-5 and has 353 students.

“Because of the growing number of students enrolling in the lower grades, the Laurel School District needed to add extra classroom space to the District’s Upper Elementary Middle School,” adds Christopher Chen, Director of The Penetron Group.

The project’s designers at Eley Guild Hardy Architects required a durable concrete waterproofing solution for the below-grade structures to provide protection from high groundwater penetration at the construction site. The local Penetron representative worked with Delta Industries, the ready-mix concrete supplier, to provide a durable and waterproof concrete mix.

Delta Industries added PENETRON ADMIX SB, in soluble bags, to the concrete during batching, which simplified the dosage and batching process. PENETRON ADMIX SB-treated concrete was used to protect the below-grade structures from groundwater penetration to ensure durable and waterproof structures.

As a crystalline waterproofing admixture, PENETRON ADMIX SB releases a catalytic reaction when exposed to moisture. This reaction generates a non-soluble crystalline formation throughout the pores and capillary tracts normally found in concrete. This formation permanently seals micro-cracks, pores and capillaries against the penetration of water or liquids from any direction, substantially reducing the permeability of usually porous concrete.

“As an integral waterproofing solution, PENETRON ADMIX SB provides low permeability, low shrinkage and crack self-healing properties, a highly effective combination for exposed concrete structures,” says Christopher Chen.