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Brick Monuments

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Have you considered placing a treated plywood form inside the monument which would stay after construction?  This would allow you to reduce weight (seismic benefit) and achieve the structural strength required.  The thickness of reinforced concrete on the top of the form would be per your design, then the brick could be attached using veneer methods.
By the way, I have had great results using 3/8" thick real brick veneer rather than 3 1/2" thick brick veneer over concrete.  It is real clay brick material, sliced thinly.  It can be applied like ceramic tile.
Water infiltration should be minimized with a good quality clear sealer in any case.  This sealer should be re-applied every 5 years, (appoximately) depending on brand of clear sealer.
Best of luck.
With Joy and Hope,
Bob Freeman, Architect
Structural Designer
Integrated Design Services, Inc.
(949) 387-8500