Archive for Design & Planning

Choosing a Patio Shape

Square? Round? Angled? Curved Freeform?

Designing a great new patio offers the opportunity to utilize more of the outdoors, and add a complementary living space to your home.

“You’ll want to make sure the patio shape you select is well suited to your needs and the setting,” writes the LandscapingNetwork.

“Factors that dictate patio shape:

  • Your property’s shape and size
  • What you plan to use the patio for
  • The style of your home and garden”

Giving some consideration now to the shape and layout of your new patio can help maximize and complement your available space, so that Oneil Concrete Construction can build the patio of your dreams.

Call today for a free consultation and estimate!

Considerations for Your New Walkway

A number of issues should be considered when choosing materials for a walkway or pathway:

Design & Style

When planning your new walkway, consider the design characteristics of your home, and choose layout, colors, and materials to complement them. For example, if you have a rustic country-style home, consider a more natural look. Symmetric lines may be better for a very formal home.

Home Materials

Look at your house’s colors: siding and trim, stucco, brickwork, etc.. The colors and textured of your walk don’t need to match them exactly, but try to select colors that complement existing structures. Earth tones are always popular, as they usually complement traditional building materials. Oneil Concrete Construction can help you choose textures and colors to match the colors of your home.

Real Estate Value

A concrete walkway made with quality materials is a good investment in your home, improving its appearance, function, and resale value. Walkways serve to make an extension of your home by making unusable places usable. Avoid the use of poorly executed gravel paths, or paver walkways which may heave and shift, thereby actually reducing the value of your home.


The budget you have set aside for your project is important when designing a new walkway, as it will determine the overall size and any special textures or colors used.

Once you have a couple of ideas, call Oneil Concrete Construction for some more options and a free estimate!

Call today for a free consultation and estimate!

Planning the Perfect Driveway

Like most things in life, a great concrete driveway starts with good planning.

And wintertime in Wisconsin is a perfect time to start planning your strategy for your springtime driveway project.

Here are some tips for designing a driveway that meets all your needs!

Step 1: Determine a budget.

Before starting, you’ll want some idea how much you intend to spend. You budget will determine how large and elaborate your new driveway will be, as well as the materials quality and extra finishing touches like texture, color, and edging.

Step 2: How large & heavy are the vehicles you intend to park here?

Size matters. If you’ll only park compact sedans on your new driveway, you may get by with eight feet in width. Large pickups, boats, or recreational vehicles may require as much as 12 feet. Take a look at your neighbors’ driveways and parking situations, and ask if you can measure their driveway for reference.

Step 3: Show your style!

A driveway needs to serve its primary function of parking vehicles. But as the single largest feature of many front lawns and entries, this is also an opportunity to improve your property’s aesthetics, curb appeal, and value.

Consider a curved design, colors and textures, radiused corners and aprons, edging or curbing, inlays, and more.

Step 4: Maintenance and upkeep considerations.

While concrete requires far less care and maintenance than asphalt, driveways are often overlooked until they crack or stain. So a little thought now can save you trouble later.

How will rainwater be drained from nearby downspouts and other adjacent drainage areas? Do you intend to use snowblowers or plows to clear winter snow and ice? Will any of your vehicles or yard activities cause stains from motor oil, etc.?

Here are some other considerations regarding driveway maintenance.

Step 5: Consider the climate.

From scorching summer heat to frigid deep-freezes, Wisconsin has it all.

Concrete is an excellent choice to withstand this range of seasonal climate change, but your new driveway should be sloped for drainage and designed to avoid standing water/ice, which can cause a slip hazard in winter. Use shovels or snowblower with plastic blades to prevent scratching or scraping your new concrete, and if using a truck-mounted plow, take extra care to avoid chipping.

Step 6: Consider any extra features for your new driveway.

  • How will your driveway align with garages or carports, or connect with walkways or patios?
  • Will you have any adjacent landscaping features like hedges, flower beds, seating areas, or retaining walls?
  • Does your design benefit from additional exterior lighting for better safety for parking and foot traffic?
  • An entry gate of some kind will add increased safety and security for your property.
  • If your driveway is sloped or especially steep, you might consider a heavily brushed finish or grooves for better traction in wet conditions.

Step 7: Contact Oneil Concrete Construction for advice and a free estimate.

Once you have some basic ideas for your new driveway project, our experts can visit your site with solutions and design suggestions, to make sure you get the driveway you want, within your budget and time frame.

A new quality concrete driveway from Oneil Concrete Construction will serve you well for many years to come, so let us help you plan it right.

Call today for a free consultation and estimate!