MacGregor and Bartlett‘s reinforced concrete textbook was my recommended reference going through undergraduate design courses. Halfway through the first term I realized that, not only were the assignments being extruded from the end of chapter exercises, but there was also (finally) a metric version available. Without question, the explanations and examples in this book helped guide my studying toward a reasonably good grade.
However, concrete design is complex and most of my design work when I started as an EIT remained in the linearly elastic world of steel. Reinforced Concrete (Mechanics and Design) ended up sitting on my shelf, rarely getting much use for years. The fact that it is written referencing CSA A23.3-94 did not not encourage my younger self to meticulously go through the text.
Fast forward to my recent unemployment stint, where I was living in an area known for concrete construction. I decided to retreat back to my own bookcase and see what I was missing. I approached the text review as an enlightened graduate: a reference book’s value is in the core explanation and examples, not the specific code references. With that acknowledgement I truly recognized the depth that MacGregor and Bartlett provide through the text. There are 20 chapters that systematically introduce the design of concrete members. The authors use historical context to identify how and why “current” design provisions are set forth in the code. More importantly, the text is illustrated with clear diagrams — a fantastic resource for a non-linear material such as concrete. Each section has detailed examples (in metric units). The benefit of the examples is the detailed process that the authors provide. Having reviewed the text, I was able to make a number of design process procedures and design tools that were easily correlated to the current CSA A23.3 standard.