"They" are not pieces or sections. The breaks you see approximately every 3' are expansion / control joints. The edging is professionally installed on each job site.
It is definitely more appealing now than prior to 1999. As far as it lasting over a long time frame, it mainly depends on how well the customer takes care of it! We use top of the line products to insure long lasting curb and even go that extra mile and use a special additive and sealants to insure the clearest & consistent color.
We dig about 1 ½ inches deep by 12 inches wide. This can be done without disturbing your existing landscape beds. There is no footer as the curb is concrete and is its own footing.
The benefit of our concrete curbing is that is a continuous piece of concrete. Individual blocks or bricks will shift over time and in the winter. Our curb is fibermesh reinforced, which adds strength to the concrete. We place control/expansion joints every 3 feet and are cut about 40% into the curb. This is designed to control the cracking of the curb during shifting periods and colder months. If the curb should crack, it should crack in the expansion joint and not be noticeable. We install GALVANIZED STEEL CABLE to eliminate any possible separation from cracking at the expansion joints.