What is Tilt-Up Construction?

Tilt-Up construction is an alternative way of assembling buildings. It has become a leader in construction methods for a wide range of applications thanks to its quick assembly time, and money-saving materials. Tilt-Up is a practical option that can be used in many types of construction projects, making it impossible to ignore when considering how to start your next project.

How Tilt-Up Construction Works

Tilt-Up construction gets its name because of the process where the panels of exterior walls are physically tilted up into place after they are created on the ground of the construction site. 

First, these wall panels are created at the work site using wood forms, rebar, and concrete. These forms are shaped and cut to match the final planned design. Next, the concrete is poured into the form. After the walls are poured into forms on the ground and are ready, they are tilted upwards into a vertical position. During this process, they are set on foundational footing. The panels are then temporarily braced until the roof is installed in a later step. 

Each panel is assembled and tilted up into the final position it will be in. The outer side of each panel acts as a canvas where exterior features such as siding, cladding, or veneer can be applied. The interior can likewise be customized depending on the purpose of the building.

Tilt-Up: How Does it Compare?

Tilt-Up construction differs from other types of construction in its ease of assembly. Tilt-Up can be a great alternative to:

  • Wood-frame construction: This tends to be labor-intensive.
  • Steel beam construction: This can be costly for smaller projects and tends to work better with high-rise buildings.
  • Prefabricated steel frame construction: These are more economical than steel beam construction but have design limitations.

While many projects can be completed using tilt-up construction, it is most commonly used for large-scale warehouses and distribution centers. That being said, tilt-up construction has been used in a wide variety of construction settings and is not limited to only these types of buildings.

Key Benefits of Tilt-Up Construction

Tilt-Up construction has taken off due to several key benefits that it has over other types of construction. 

Some of these benefits include:


Tilt-Up construction is extremely fast, especially compared to other types of construction assembly times. Concrete used for the wall panels can cure in a matter of days, and the process of tilting these walls into position is less labor-intensive than other methods. Additionally, later stages of construction, such as roof installation, can be completed sooner as the walls are assembled so quickly.

Labor Costs and Materials

Regarding labor, tilt-up construction doesn’t need highly specialized workers. This saves on labor costs, as it only requires workers to pour the concrete and a crane operator to lift the walls into place. At Gateway Building Company, we can do this in a matter of days.

As for materials, the main construction of tilt-up walls is made up of concrete and rebar, which are easy to source and relatively affordable. Additionally, some states offer incentives for economic development, including canceling sales tax on the materials purchased in-state. Since the materials needed for tilt-up construction are not specialized, it is easier to find locally and thus take advantage of these types of incentives. 

Energy Efficiency

Reinforced concrete walls are great insulators, and further insulation can be easily added during construction. This makes tilt-up buildings energy efficient, saving on AC and heating costs once the building is complete and in use. 

Additionally, tilt-up construction is more energy efficient during the building process, saving time and money early on.

Design Flexibility and Cost Savings

When designing tilt-up construction buildings, design companies use software to create your exact specifications and remove unknowns from the building process. Changes in cost and timeline can be reported in real-time thanks to these types of software, allowing you to save money by taking the guesswork out of the equation. 

Looking for Tilt-Up Construction in Durham, NC? Contact Gateway Building Company to Learn More

If you are considering tilt-up construction for your next project, look no further than Gateway Building Company. Our team has extensive experience in tilt-up construction, and we have the knowledge and skills needed to bring your vision to life. 

If you are interested in learning more about tilt-up construction and how it can benefit your project, don’t hesitate to schedule a meeting to discuss your unique project in the Triangle, NC area. Our team is here to answer any questions you may have and to help you make an informed decision about your construction needs.

Image: Richard Thornton On Shutterstock

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