Omaha Re-Roofing Project in Historic District Wins Top Honors From ARMA

When the Molly Jenkins Carriage House was damaged by hail, a new roof system featuring CertainTeed Carriage House shingles was installed to protect the home and recapture its classic look. Photos: Everlast Exteriors

The Molly Jenkins Carriage House is located in the historic Country Club District of Omaha, Nebraska. The home, originally built in the 1920s, needed a new roof after it sustained hail damage and multiple leaks were discovered. The homeowners wanted an aesthetically pleasing, durable roof system that would be true to the style of the neighborhood and capture the look of the house as it was originally designed.

Omaha-based Everlast Exteriors was called in to consult on the project after the storm. “Their insurance agent recommended us to the homeowner,” says Brent Hall, co-owner of Everlast Exteriors. “The Country Club historic district is an early 20th century Omaha neighborhood that was marketed to attract homebuyers who expected an exceptionally high level of quality. The community was added to the National Register Of Historic Places in 2004. On this home, the existing asphalt shingle roof had to be replaced, as did the inlaid gutters, which were also damaged.”

Hall recommended asphalt shingles due to their beauty and performance. After consulting with the homeowner, the company installed CertainTeed Carriage House shingles, which are a Class 4 impact resistant shingle.

The first step was to replace the gutter system. “We had to remove the first 3 feet of the roofing and put down a high-temp ice and water shield,” explains Hall. “We installed it within the inlaid gutters, and then ran it 3 feet up the roof. Then we fabricated and installed the inlaid gutter, before we went back and roofed it. We had to do it that way because the gutter system extends under the shingles and underlayment.”

The gutters were custom fabricated out of 24-gauge pre-finished galvanized steel and installed in the existing wood frame. “We also re-flashed the chimneys using the 24 gauge pre finished steel color to match shingles.” Hall says.

The new shingles were installed over a synthetic underlayment and ice and water shield. New accessories included lead boots for the plumbing vents, a new gutter apron, drip edge and exhaust vents.

Standout features included a custom-fabricated turret cap and a new weather vane. “We fabricated a copper turret cap that might be the biggest one we’ve ever made,” says Hall. “She also purchased a copper weather vane, and we installed that for her, too.”

The copper turret cap was the final touch on the project. According to Hall, the homeowner really wasn’t sure what she wanted, so the project was put in the hands of Todd Sterba, a top metal fabricator at Everlast Exteriors. “Executing something like this takes the right tools and the right fabricator,” notes Hall. “He worked on it in our shop and even took it home to his own workshop to put some finishing touches on it. We never even saw the final product until he brought it out to the job. The homeowner really loved it.”

The style of shingle was chosen because it fit in with the character of the area. “It’s an old house in a historic neighborhood, and that asphalt shingle really has a timeless look,” says Hall. “It’s made to emulate a slate roof, and it looks like something they might have installed in the era when the home was built.”

Everlast Exteriors submitted the project to the Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association for the ARMA Excellence In Asphalt Roofing Awards program, which recognizes industry professionals for their high-performing steep-slope and low-slope asphalt roofing projects across North America. The Molly Jenkins Carriage House received the Gold Award in 2020. The company received a check for $2,000 at the 2020 International Roofing Expo.

“We were really happy to learn that we won,” Hall recalls. “We try and just knock out the coolest, best roofs around. We use the best products out there and provide the best workmanship. That’s our goal. Our top priority is to put out the best product not get the biggest profit — so it’s nice to get recognition.”

According to Hall, the award-wining project showcases the company’s strengths. “We match high-end material with high-end labor,” he says. “We try to bring together the best shingles and accessories, with the best labor practices to install the best product we can while meeting every customer’s budget. We provide a transferable lifetime labor warranty so we make sure every roof we do is aesthetically pleasing and maintenance free.”

Submissions are being accepted for ARMA’s 2021 Excellence in Asphalt Roofing Awards. For more information or to apply, visit www.asphaltroofing.org.

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: Everlast Exteriors, Omaha, Nebraska, www.everlastexteriorconstruction.com

MATERIALS

Shingles: Carriage House Gatehouse Slate, CertainTeed, www.certainteed.com

After Devastating Fire, Couple Designs Home with Fire Resistant Roof

For the roof of their new home, the designers selected Inspire Classic Slate by Boral, a durable roofing system offering a Class 4 Impact rating for hail, and a 110-mph wind uplift rating, and a Class A system fire rating. Photos: McKinley & Associates

Their original home in idyllic Stonington, Connecticut, was designed in the Arts and Crafts style and was a place of fond memories and milestones for the family of four. Architect Michael McKinley, owner of McKinley & Associates, designed the home about 25 years ago specifically for his family. But a few years ago, on a very dry and windy afternoon in March while he was home with one of his two daughters, the house was ravaged in a fire.

“It didn’t sound so much like a fire, but instead like a bunch of squirrels running across the roof,” said McKinley.

Unfortunately, the sound wasn’t squirrels. The fire tore into the roof, destroying it as well as the whole second floor of the home. Extensive water damage plagued the ground level as a result. Luckily, nobody was harmed. But the fire completely uprooted the family — who immediately relocated into a rental — and set the couple into motion.

Sustainability was a key focus of the design. The home features a geothermal system and rooftop solar power.

Michael, along with wife Kathy, an interiors expert who also works for the firm, ultimately set out to rebuild; however, they decided not to build a replica of the first home. The couple instead forged a completely different design direction, ultimately deciding on another aesthetic altogether while addressing a responsibility to build more sustainably and with fire safety top-of-mind.

As was the case with the McKinley’s first home, fire can erupt on the roof when embers hit the surface and one or more ignite. When trees and brush pair with fire and wind, the dangerous concoction enables the embers to blow onto the roof.

The McKinleys knew the roof material chosen would be incredibly important in reducing the risk that future embers could ignite the surface. For their new abode, the designers selected Inspire Classic Slate by Boral, a durable roofing system which mimics the beauty of natural slate and that integrates cutting-edge environmentally conscious technology. The roof is resilient to harsh weather conditions, offering a Class 4 Impact rating for hail and a 110-mph wind uplift rating. Perhaps most important to the family, the Classic Slate provides a Class A system Fire rating, the industry’s highest.

The Roof Installation

JSD Home Improvements of Waterford, Connecticut, was contracted to install the roof. “The family had already decided to use a material with a high fire rating,” says Jeff Dennison, owner and installer with JSD Home Improvements. “Hail can also occur anytime where this home is located. They considered standing seam metal roofing, but ultimately went with the Classic Slate, not only because of the performance benefits, but because it gives the look of Vermont slate, which better complemented the architecture and look of the home.”

Moving away from the Arts and Crafts genre of the damaged home, the couple instead designed their new abode to pay homage to the region’s historic 200-year-old farm heritage. Evoking a modern rendition of the traditional farmhouse, the home integrates the gabled roof concept. The roofscape features multiple gables and pitches.

“A mix of Olive, Ash Grey, Evergreen and Red Rock hues were combined to create an authentic look,” adds Dennison. “The trick during installation was to take two of the colors and use them as accents, weaving them into the other three colors. We had to stand back numerous times to get the visual right and make sure the accent colors stood out.”

In all, it took Dennison and two other team members eight days to complete the roof. No real challenges interrupted them, with the exception of a couple of rainy days.

“This roof material is extremely durable, strong, and easy to work with,” Dennison adds. “Working with Bob Wood Construction on this project was also great. They are a general contractor known for orchestrating a jobsite well and keeping everything moving.”

The roof adorns a home designed by the McKinleys to protect the environment while functioning well. The McKinley’s daughters, now in their early twenties, have left to pursue their own paths, and the new home is much smaller than the original at 3,200 square feet, yet still encourages regular visits and stays. At four bedrooms and three baths, the home’s functionality is also improved as compared to the last home, with many spaces designed to be multifunctional. Michael notes that in the decades since designing the family’s first home, his skills have been refined. “I’ve become a lot more creative with designing smaller spaces that are more efficient,” he says. “This is a key part of the new home’s sustainability story.”

Eco-friendly it is. The home features large windows, making use of abundant natural sunlight, and incorporates radiant floor heating. Closed cell spray polyurethane foam insulates the home, ensuring a dramatic reduction in energy usage. The home also makes use of a geothermal system and solar power.

Waldo Renewable, an Old Lyme, Connecticut-based electrical contractor specializing in solar system design and installation, led the photovoltaic install. The 6.4 kW grid-tied rooftop system includes 20 LG 320 solar panels and SolarEdge 7600H with a DC optimizer. The Waldo Renewable team utilized flashing for a seamless installation with the Inspire Classic Slate.

The McKinleys designed one additional intuitive feature into their roof. An elaborate drainage system collects water from the roof and stores it underground in a cistern for use in the garden where Kathy grows vegetables.

Michael and Kathy McKinley created an incredible new home. The combined materials and systems ensure optimized performance and return on investment for the long term, with fire safety to boot. And one glance at the home proves curb appeal wasn’t sacrificed for that performance. The home is ultimately a testament to the meaningful material and construction advances of the past two decades.

“We are 25 years into the future,” says Michael, speaking of his home’s vast improvements over the last one. “No matter how well you did it then, it’s not the same. All the factors have changed.”

About the Author: Rick Hackett is product manager with Boral Roofing, a leading provider of durable and energy-efficient new and retrofit roofing solutions. He can be reached via email at Rick.Hackett@boral.com. For more information about Boral Roofing, visit www.BoralRoof.com.

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: JSD Home Improvements, Waterford, Connecticut

Solar Contractor: Waldo Renewable, Old Lyme, Connecticut, www.waldorenewable.com

MATERIALS

Roof System: Inspire Classic Slate, Boral Roofing, www.boralroof.com

Solar System: 20 LG 320 solar panels, www.lg.com/us, and SolarEdge 7600H, www.solaredge.com/us

The Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design Lives Up to its Name

The Kendeda Building is engineered to produce more energy than it consumes and capture rainwater for collection in an underground cistern for reuse. Photo: Jonathan Hillyer

When the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) decided to design its new building as a “Living Building,” the project team knew they had to be extremely thoughtful in their design choices and building materials selections. The Living Building Challenge is the world’s most ambitious green building program and requires that projects meet 20 rigorous performance requirements throughout the construction process and for a full year after completion. Made possible through a partnership with the Kendeda Fund, the new Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design is the first academic and research building in the Southeast to attempt this certification and is designed to use one-third the energy of a comparable building.

With a combination of great insulation, energy-efficient systems, and a rooftop solar array, the 46,800-square-foot Kendeda Building is engineered to actually produce more energy than it consumes. The roof is also designed to capture rainwater for collection into a 50,000-gallon underground cistern where it is filtered for reuse throughout the building, including as drinking water. The building’s roof is also host to a 1,000-square-foot accessible roof deck and a 4,300-square-foot rooftop garden with a honeybee apiary, pollinator garden, and blueberry orchard.

The photovoltaic array is comprised of 913 solar modules covering approximately 15,860 square feet of area, with a total capacity of 330 kW. It forms a floating canopy above the building. The panels will tilt from the horizontal plane by 5 degrees to face south. This slight adjustment increases solar exposure and improves drainage.

Multi-Functional Roof

As you can imagine, a roof with so many functions demands the use of only the most exacting roofing products. The project team chose a 3-inch base layer of non-halogenated polyiso roof insulation to cover nearly the entire roof and approximately 13,000 square feet of thermoplastic polyolefin (TPO) membrane. GAF supplied the polyiso insulation and 60-mil EverGuard Extreme TPO roof system for the project, and it was installed by Roof Management Inc., headquartered in Norcross, Georgia.

The solar array forms a floating canopy above the building. The panels tilt to increase solar exposure and improve drainage. Photo: Vertical River

The design team also chose to direct rainwater into capture systems by the judicious use of tapered insulation over the flat material, which created the proper rooftop slope and drainage.

Even without this water catchment system, tapered insulation can be a very beneficial design feature for low-slope roofs. Ponding or standing water can add enormous stress to a building’s roof and lead to premature failure of roofing materials if water stands on the roof surface for more than 48 hours. If unaddressed, frequent ponding of water can lead to serious problems such as structural deflections of the roof deck, the growth of bacteria or unwanted vegetation on the roof, and can ultimately cause water intrusion into the building that can be costly to remediate. That the Kendeda Building roof can use this design to also collect water for reuse is an added bonus.

The Living Building Challenge specifies that materials in Living Buildings should avoid the use of certain chemicals. Polyiso insulation products manufactured with non-halogenated flame retardants satisfy this challenge while offering superior performance.

  • Polyiso insulation offers superior performance qualities, including:
  • High R-value per inch compared to other types of insulation of equivalent thicknesses.
  • High moisture resistance.
  • Improved fire resistance.
  • Lightweight boards for easy handling and installation.
  • Blowing agents with zero ozone depletion potential and negligible global warming potential.

Beneath its carefully designed roof, the building holds classrooms, laboratories, offices, an auditorium, and a student commons. But the educational mission of the building extends beyond these learning spaces. The entire project — from its low-waste construction to its low-consumption energy use — offers unique learning opportunities for designers, builders, and building operators, such as how a building’s design can conserve energy and water while mitigating a region’s humidity and potential droughts.

Salvaged Material

The Living Building Challenge is organized into seven performance areas — one of which addresses the materials used on a project. New building projects are required to include one salvaged material per 500 square meters of gross building area, which worked out to 10 salvaged materials for the Kendeda Building. These included the following:

The building’s roof features a 1,000-square-foot accessible roof deck and a 4,300-square-foot rooftop garden. Photo Credit: Justin Chan Photography

· Slate shingles: The project acquired a number of pallets of gray slate shingles when the aging roof of the Georgia Tech Alumni Association was renovated. These singles were used as tile on the walls and floors of showers and restrooms.

· Nail-laminated floor decks: 500 10-by-6-foot nail-laminated floor decks were created from two-by-fours salvaged from movie sets, including those form the show “24” and movie “Rampage,” with support from the Georgia Works training program.

· Heart pine joists: 140-year-old Tech Tower provided heart pine joists that serve as treads for the Kendeda Building’s monumental staircase.

· Lumber from felled trees: George Tech’s ground crew helped by collecting fallen trees across the campus, which were then turned into lumber used to make counters and benches.

· Granite curbs: Atlanta’s old State Archives Building provided granite that was used for curbs in the landscaping.

· Wood boards: A former church in Atlanta was the source of the wood that can be found on some of the decorative wall as well as the lobby’s ramp.

The Living Building was designed by a collaboration between Lord Aeck Sargent and the Miller Hull Partnership, constructed by Skanska, and funded through a $30 million grant from The Kendeda Fund, one of the leading philanthropic investors in civic and environmental programs in the Atlanta area with a commitment to ecological and social causes.

Certification by the Living Building Challenge 3.1 is anticipated in 2021, and the project is also pursuing the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED certification at the Platinum level.

About the author: Justin Koscher is the president of the Polyisocyanurate Insulation Manufacturers Association (PIMA), a trade association that serves as the voice of the rigid polyisocyanurate insulation industry and a proactive advocate for safe, cost-effective, sustainable and energy-efficient construction. For more information, visit www.polyiso.org.

TEAM

Architects: Lord Aeck Sargent, Atlanta, Georgia, www.lordaecksargent.com; and The Miller Hull Partnership, Seattle, Washington, www.millerhull.com

General Contractor: Skanska USA, Atlanta, Georgia, www.usa.skanska.com

Roofing Contractor: Roof Management Inc., Norcross, Georgia, www.roofmanagementinc.com

MATERIALS

TPO Membrane: EverGuard Extreme 60-mil TPO, GAF, www.GAF.com

Insulation: EnergyGuard Non-halogenated (NH) Polyiso Roof Insulation Board and EnergyGuard NH Tapered Polyiso Roof Insulation, GAF

Vapor Retarder: GAF SA Vapor Retarder, GAF

Insulation Adhesive: OlyBond500 Insulation Adhesive, OMG Roofing Products, www.OMGroofing.com

Cover Board: 1/2-inch DensDeck, Georgia-Pacific, www.buildgp.com

Solar Panels: X-Series X22-360-COM, SunPower, https://us.sunpower.com

Custom-Colored Metal Panels Create Standout Roof for Pennsylvania School

Approximately 18,000 square feet of 22-gauge Tite-Loc Plus panels in a custom finish help emphasize the angled gables topping the new school. Photos: hortonphotoinc.com

Latrobe Elementary School is a state-of-the-art facility featuring two-story classroom wings, a cafeteria with a stage, a full-prep kitchen, gymnasium, media center, science and technology classrooms, band/music rooms, a center for student creativity, administrative offices and support spaces designed to serve nearly 700 students.

Located outside of Pittsburgh in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, the school is within easy driving distance of several popular ski areas, and the building’s design, by Monroeville, Pennsylvania-based Axis Architecture, has a bit of a Swiss chalet in its roofline.

More than 18,000 square feet of Petersen’s Tite-Loc Plus roof panels in a distinct, custom Marquis Orange finish help emphasize the angled gables topping the new school. The 22-gauge panels, along with 3,800 square feet of .032 gauge PAC-750 soffit, complement the classic terra cotta-toned brick that clads the upper two-thirds of the school’s façade.

The roof also features low-slope sections where a hot asphalt roof system from The Garland Company was installed.  

Installing the Roof Systems

The roof systems were installed by Pennsylvania Roofing Systems (PRS), headquartered in Bakerstown, Pennsylvania. PRS handles all types of commercial roofing, including slate, tile, hot asphalt, built-up, single-ply and sheet metal.

The new construction project was appealing to the company for several reasons, including the size and the scopes of work that included metal and hot built-up roofing.

Crews from Pennsylvania Roofing Systems installed the metal panels, along with 3,800 square feet of .032 gauge PAC-750 soffit.

Two different crews tackled the metal roofs and flat roofs as the sections were being built by the general contractor, The Foreman Group.

On the low-slope sections, one crew installed the Garland hot asphalt roof system, consisting of insulation, base plies, and Garland’s modified cap sheet. Another crew tackled the metal roof, installing 16-inch-wide PAC-CLAD Tite-Loc Plus panels, which were mechanically seamed.

Pennsylvania Roofing Systems faced quite a challenge on this project as the acoustical deck for approximately half the building was running in the wrong direction. This posed a problem, as attaching the clips for the metal panels would perforate the acoustical deck. PRS came up with a solution to the problem. The company fabricated a 16-gauge hat channel that was installed over the acoustical decking, and the clips were fastened to it.  

The roof panels were rolled on the site. PRS used its own Series 1100 National Crane and a Skytrak to lift material to the roof. Crews also installed 3,800 square feet of .032 gauge PAC-750 soffit.

The Snow Guards

School administrators were concerned about mounting snow on the new metal roof and the safety of schoolchildren down below, so material supplier Brock Associates suggested installing ColorGard snow retention by S-5! The S-5! system is exclusively recommended by both Petersen, the roof manufacturer, and Brock Associates, the panel supplier.

The S-5! ColorGard snow retention system installed on 10 sections of the metal roof perfectly matches the roof color.

Manufactured from certified, high-tensile aluminum and extensively tested for load-to-failure results, ColorGard controls roof snow migration and dramatically reduces the risks associated with rooftop avalanches.

PRS installed the snow retention system on 10 sections of the metal roof. The non-penetrating system was easy to install and perfectly matches the roof color. After the panels are mechanically seamed, the non-penetrating S-5-V Clamps are installed. The ColorGard system features a continuous extruded aluminum crossmember, and strips of prepainted metal are slid into the face of ColorGard to match the roof.

Great Teamwork

The complicated project went smoothly, according to PRS, thanks in part to excellent coordination between the general contractor and various trades. PRS management noted the company selected Petersen’s PAC-CLAD products because of the manufacturer’s excellent local representation, including distributor Brock Associates. Petersen’s reputation for good field support also played a role in this selection.

TEAM

Architect: Axis Architecture, Monroeville, Pennsylvania, www.axisarchitecturepc.com

General Contractor: The Foreman Group, Zelienople, Pennsylvania, www.foremangroup.com

Roofing Contractor: Pennsylvania Roofing Systems, Bakerstown, Pennsylvania

Supplier: Brock Associates, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, www.brock-assoc.com

MATERIALS

Metal Panels: Tite-Loc Plus, PAC-CLAD | Petersen, www.pac-clad.com

Low-Slope Roof System: Three-Ply Mineral Mod Bit System in hot asphalt with two plies Type IV Felt and Stressply FR Mineral, The Garland Company, www.garlandco.com

Snow Retention System: ColorGard, S-5-V Clamps, VersaClip and SnoClip II, S-5! www.s-5.com

New Roof Systems Top University of Minnesota’s Renovated Pioneer Hall

Pioneer Hall was renovated by the University of Minnesota in 2019 at cost of $104 million. Photo: Central Roofing Company

Pioneer Hall is a central fixture on the University of Minnesota campus. Built in 1934, the five-story structure serves as a freshman dormitory and dining hall. The building was almost totally rebuilt as part of a $104 million renovation project in 2019.

A key goal of the project was to keep the distinctive, highly visible brick facades on the four outer wings in place while totally replacing the main section of the building. Work included entirely renovating the interior, replacing all mechanical systems, and installing a new roof.

Working along with McGough Construction, the St. Paul-based general contractor on the project, Minneapolis-based Central Roofing Company installed the new roof systems on the building, which included 47,000 square feet of synthetic slate, as well as built-up roofs, EPDM roofs, and a garden roof.

Central Roofing has been in business since 1929, and the company is a fixture on the University of Minnesota campus. “We do a wide variety of different types of commercial roofs, ranging anywhere from flat to steep to sheet metal roofs,” says Michael Mehring, vice president of commercial sales for Central Roofing. “We also have a metal panel division. There is no system that we cannot do in regard to flat roofs. On steep roofs, we do both tile and shingle as well as sheet metal. In addition to that, we have one of the largest service divisions in the Midwest.”

The building’s 93 dormers posed some detail challenges. The dormer roofs were topped with synthetic slate, and the sides were clad with it as well. Photos: DaVinci Roofscapes

The project involved multiple scopes of work, including the DaVinci Roofscapes synthetic slate on the steep-slope sections, Johns Manville built-up roofs on the main roof and green roof area, as well as sheet metal work, gutters and downspouts. Central Roofing developed a detailed plan to bid on all the scopes of work — and execute everything.

“The project was interesting in the sense that approximately 75 percent of the building was demolition,” notes Mehring. “That included all of the internal parts of the building. The four bays around the perimeter were saved because of historical ramifications. The university wanted to try and keep those four bays because of the distinctive windows and the brick. The middle portion of the structure was pretty much demoed out. So much internal work was needed on the mechanical and electrical systems that they couldn’t save it.”

Synthetic Slate Roof

Central Roofing worked closely with McGough Construction and the project architect, St. Paul-based TDKA Architects, to ensure the new synthetic slate roof system would closely replicate the structure’s original slate roof. According to Henri Germain, project manager/estimator with Central Roofing, the DaVinci Multi-Width Slate product was approved for the project because it so authentically duplicates real slate.

DaVinci Multi-Width Slate in a custom color blend was chosen for the steep-slope sections of the roof.

“We started by making presentations of product options to the project architect,” says Germain. “The architect moved forward with the DaVinci product because of the aesthetics, value, and long-term benefits to the university.”

Selection of a roofing color was also a critical factor. DaVinci created a custom color blend of dark purple, medium brown, dark stone, medium green and dark green for Pioneer Hall. “The capability of DaVinci to develop the custom color blend was amazing,” says Germain. “The roofing colors really complement the dormitory plus other structures on campus.”

Installation Begins

Work began on the steep slope sections with the installation of the synthetic slate system on the brand-new metal deck. “From a scheduling standpoint, the first thing that we did was the tile areas,” Mehring recalls. “In order to maintain the milestones that McGough had, we had to essentially get them watertight within 60 days. To do that, we did the tile work in phases utilizing 15-20 workers every day.”

The men were split into three crews. A crew of six to seven roofers began installing the substrate board and Grace Ice & Water Shield, which served as the vapor barrier. The second crew came in behind the first to install the wood blocking and insulation, which was capped with plywood and covered with Grace Ice & Water Shield and GAF FeltBuster synthetic underlayment.

Crews from Central Roofing Company installed RG 16 Snow Guards from Rocky Mountain Snow Guards.

A third crew of four or five technicians then installed the DaVinci synthetic slate tiles. The product was easy to install, notes Germain, but the numerous details — including some 93 dormers — posed some challenges. Crews also installed RG 16 Snow Guards from Rocky Mountain Snow Guards Inc.

“There were many details, and because of the extreme difficulty in accessing the area after the scaffolding was removed, everything was treated as if it would never be returned to in the lifetime of the roof — not for caulking, not for anything,” Germain says. “The thought was to make sure it was done once and done right.”

As the tile work progressed, the sheet metal crew started installing the gutters. The waterproofing, gutter installation and tile application had to be coordinated carefully to make sure everything was tied in perfectly. “It was a sequencing nightmare,” says Mehring.

Central Roofing crews installed the wood blocking, sheathing and waterproofing in the decorative cornices, which had been recreated out of fiber reinforced plastic (FRP) by another subcontractor. Central Roofing then fabricated and installed the copper internal gutters, as well as the downspouts, which were constructed of pre-finished steel to match the window frames.

On the smaller flat roof areas abutting the steep-slope roof, a 60-mil EPDM system from Johns Manville was installed. These areas were completed as work progressed on each section.

Built-Up Roofs

On the low-slope sections of the main roof, crews applied a four-ply built-up roof system manufactured by Johns Manville. Approximately 31,500 square feet of JM’s 4GIG system was installed and topped with a gravel surface.

Central Roofing’s sheet metal crew installed custom fabricated gutters. The waterproofing, gutter installation and tile application had to be carefully coordinated.

The built-up roof areas were bordered by parapet walls, which were east to tie into, notes Mehring. “What made this project a tad bit easier is that the other scopes of the work — the flat roofs — didn’t have too many sequencing issues with the tile work and the gutters,” he says. “The built-up roofers were on their own and had their own schedule.”

On the 13,000-square-foot area for the green roof, a Johns Manville three-ply system with a modified cap sheet was installed. The green roof features a built-in leak detection system from International Leak Detection (ILD). “The leak detection system is encapsulated between the polyiso and the cover board,” notes Mehring. “We installed a JM modified cap sheet. All of the seams had to be reinforced with their PermaFlash liquid membrane to maintain the warranty because of the green roof.”

Installation Hurdles

Challenges on the project included a tight schedule and difficult weather. “Essentially we had a 40-day schedule to get all of the built-up roofing on,” Mehring says. “The challenge with not only the built-up but the tile as well is that the work started in the late fall and we had to work through the winter. You can imagine the problems with the Minnesota weather.”

Days were lost to rain, snow, cold temperatures and high winds. The green roof system couldn’t be completed until May, near the end of the project, when Central Roofing installed the growing medium and plants. After a drainage layer was installed over the cap sheet, crews applied engineered soils and sedum mats supplied by Hanging Gardens, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Access at the site was also difficult. Central Roofing used its Potain cranes to get materials on and off the roof. “Those self-erecting stick cranes can go 120 feet up in the air and they also have the ability to deliver materials 150 feet from the setup location,” Mehring explains. “That was critical because we only had two locations we could set up: on the south side, in between the opening of the two wings, and on the north side, also in the opening between the wings. We had to have the ability to get material to the middle section and the corners of all four wings, and that was the only way to do it.”

Another logistical challenge was posed by a large tree at the southeast corner of the building — the oldest tree on campus. Great care had to be taken to avoid damaging it. “The tree goes as high as the steep roof, and you had to work right by it,” notes Germain. “While working and using the crane, we couldn’t touch it. The guys were very careful and very conscious of it. Adam Fritchie, the foreman on the project, did a great job communicating with the university and the crews to make sure everyone understood the project goals.”

Safety Plan

As part of the site-specific safety plan, crew members were tied off 100 percent of the time on the steep-slope sections — even with scaffolding in place for the project. The flat roof areas were bordered by parapets, but they were only 2 feet high, so safety railing systems were installed. “We used Raptor Rails all the way around, and when we were installing the railings, we used Raptor carts,” Mehring says. “Our men were fully tied off while installing the railings — and taking them down.”

It was a complicated project, but executing complicated projects with multiple scopes of work is one of the company’s strengths. “Overall, I think we had more than 20,000 hours on this project,” Mehring says. “So, I think that a roofer having the ability to garner 20,000 hours on a project speaks for our ability to finish large and challenging projects within the milestones required — as well as keeping safe protocols and paying the bills. The tile, the copper, the sheet metal, the built-up roofing, the green roofing, the EPDM — all of those were self-performed by our guys.”

“This was such a special project,” Germain says. “Aside from the sheer size, it captures the heart. When we look at the finished structure we’re extremely proud. Our team, which also included Lloyd Carr, Matt Teuffel and Corey Degris, played a big part in re-establishing Pioneer Hall as a key building on the University of Minnesota campus.”

TEAM

Architect: TDKA Architects, St. Paul, Minnesota, www.tkda.com

General Contractor: McGough Construction, St. Paul, Minnesota, www.mcgough.com

Roofing Contractor: Central Roofing Company, Minneapolis, Minnesota, https://www.centralroofing.com

MATERIALS

Synthetic Slate: DaVinci Multi-Width Slate, DaVinci Roofscapes, www.davinciroofscapes.com

Built-Up Roofs: Four-ply 4GIG system and, Johns Manville, www.JM.com

EPDM Roof: 60-mil EPDM, Johns Manville

Vapor Barrier: Grace Ice & Water Shield, GCP Allied Technologies, www.gcpat.com

Underlayment: FeltBuster synthetic underlayment, GAF, www.GAF.com

Leak Detection System: International Leak Detection, https://leak-detection.com

Snow Guards: Rocky Mountain RG 16 Snow Guards, Rocky Mountain Snow Guards Inc., www.rockymountainsnowguards.com

Green Roof: Sedum mats, Hanging Gardens, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, www.hanging-gardens.com