Terrazzo is an eye-pleasing and extremely durable flooring material that has been used in the Chicago area of Illinois for over a century. It is usually composed of a mixture of marble chips, shells, glass pieces, other stone aggregates, cement, and water, and is then polished to a high shine. These days instead of cement based terrazzo it is pretty popular to use epoxy based terrazzo for it gives much more variety of color choices and designs. Terrazzo floors are well known to be very resistant to wear and tear and can be cleaned and maintained pretty easily.
As we know, terrazzo spread its roots in Chicago in the late 1800s, and it quickly became popular for its durability and attractive looks. Terrazzo was used in many of Chicago's most iconic buildings, including the Wrigley Building, the Chicago Tribune Tower, and the Merchandise Mart. Terrazzo was also found in many of Chicago's and its suburban schools, hospitals, and many other public buildings.
Later, in the early 1900s, terrazzo was also featured in some beautiful residential homes. Usually, you would find terrazzo in kitchens and bathrooms because it was easy to clean and maintain. Terrazzo was also found in some of Chicago's most luxurious homes, as it was considered a sign of wealth and status. Terrazzo flooring systems are not easy and cheap to install.
Terrazzo was popular in Chicago throughout the entire 20th century. It was featured in many of the windy city's new buildings, including the John Hancock Center and the Sears Tower. Numerous Chicago’s schools, hospitals, and other public buildings have used terrazzo and have it till this day.
Over the past years, we are witnessing a rebirth of terrazzo popularity. These days you can find terrazzo in a wide variety of places, such as residential homes, offices, hotels, airports, restaurants, and retail stores. Interestingly, terrazzo flooring these days is perceived as a sustainable and environmentally friendly material. They compose terrazzo from recycled materials, and it could be recycled at the end of its life, though its life is usually pretty long.
While we are aware of terrazzo longevity and durability, if not cared for and maintained properly terrazzo can become dull, damaged, stained, scratched. In many cases the building owners may think to get terrazzo removed or covered with a different type of flooring material. However, it is not the smartest decision because the most cost-effective solution is a professional restoration of terrazzo floors.
First of all, terrazzo floors are a valuable asset to any building in Chicago and its historic area. As one of the most expensive flooring systems to install, terrazzo can add beauty and value to a home or business. Removing or covering terrazzo floors could substantially decrease the value of a property. Second of all, terrazzo flooring is an extremely sustainable material which could be recycled at the end of its long life. Third, terrazzo is a very durable material, which easily withstands heavy foot traffic and is a bliss to clean and maintain. Hence, removing or covering terrazzo floors could be a costly mistake. Stone restoration companies, like ourselves, can do professional restoration and repair of terrazzo floors to their original sheen, health, and value, which would also extend terrazzo life to many more years to come.