Bay Harbor Yacht Club’s Patio Plaza Gets an Upgrade

The second-floor patio deck of the Bay Harbor Yacht Club was removed and replaced with a new system featuring fully adhered Versico TPO membrane beneath Hanover Porcelain Pavers. Photos: Versico

Located along the shore of northern Lake Michigan, the Bay Harbor Yacht Club (BHYC) is a stately building surrounded by natural beauty. In addition to a deep-water marina and sandy beach, members of this luxurious private club have access to a pool, tennis courts, a fitness center, and a variety of restaurants, from upscale to casual.

One of the most popular spots in the BHYC is the large, tiled patio deck that extends off the second-floor ballroom. The patio deck, which also serves as the roof of the spa’s outdoor relaxation area, provides a laid-back atmosphere for people to eat, drink, spend time with friends, and listen to live music while taking in spectacular views of Lake Michigan.

Crews from Doyle Roofing installed the 135-mil VersiFleece TPO using Flexible DASH adhesive.

In 2020, the patio needed repairs. The old tile pavers were damaged, resulting in leaks in the outdoor spa area below. A new system was designed that used a fully adhered 135-mil VersiFleece TPO membrane beneath Hanover Porcelain Pavers, which would provide much better waterproofing protection than the previous coating/tile paver system.

Doyle Roofing, Inc., was selected for the BHYC project based on the company’s 40-year track record of high-quality work all over northern Michigan. The Doyle Roofing team is trained and experienced in the installation of a wide variety of roofing systems on both new construction and re-roofing projects.

Removal and Replacement

The project started with removing the old tile pavers and coating system down to the concrete deck. Then the Doyle Roofing crew primed the concrete deck with Versico’s CAV-GRIP 3V Low-VOC Adhesive/Primer. CAV-GRIP 3V can be used in a wide range of temperatures, is low-odor and low-VOC, sets up quickly, and is easy to apply.

Hanover Porcelain Pavers were selected for their durability and aesthetics.

After priming, Doyle Roofing applied Versico’s Flexible DASH, a two-part urethane adhesive, to the deck. Flexible DASH is VOC-free, energy-absorbing, and impact-resistant, and it allows for a quick and totally non-penetrating system. Once the Flexible DASH set up, the crew then installed a 135-mil VersiFleece TPO membrane. VersiFleece TPO offers exceptional waterproofing protection, as well as durability, flexibility, and toughness due to its thickness, reinforcing scrim, and polyester fleece backing.

After the membrane installation was complete, it was time to install the paver system. The crew loose-laid a drainage/protection mat over the VersiFleece membrane, then installed the pedestal paver system. Versico’s Hanover Porcelain Pavers were selected because they are ideal for use as outdoor flooring. Porcelain Pavers are hard-wearing, anti-slip, weather-resistant, and capable of withstanding heavy loads without compromising aesthetics. These pavers are quick and easy to install and are resistant to acid, chemicals, mold, and salt.

The project was completed in May 2020. Work was completed in approximately one month. The Doyle Roofing crew reported that the job was made much simpler by the use of Flexible DASH Adhesive, which sets up much more quickly than standard bonding adhesives and allowed them to compete more work in less time.

BHYC’s new and improved patio plaza will provide a welcoming place for members to gather and socialize for years to come, while Versico’s VersiFleece membrane will keep the fitness center below dry and protected against leaks.


Roofing Contractor: Doyle Inc. Roofing Contractors, Cheboygan and Petoskey, Michigan,


Membrane: 135-mil VersiFleece TPO, Versico,

Pedestal System: Hanover Porcelain Tile Pedestal Pavers,

Florida Stadium’s Metal Roof Intimidates, Alludes to Campus Architecture

The softball stadium on the campus of the University of Florida in Gainesville features a steeply pitched metal roof that frames an impressive gateway into the ballpark. Photos: Matt Horton,

The renovated Katie Seashole Pressly Softball Stadium on the campus of the University of Florida in Gainesville might have all the latest amenities, but its design pays homage to the school’s earlier days.

The facility’s steeply pitched metal roof in a signature orange-red finish is a clear reference to the buildings surrounding the stadium, and it also frames an impressive gateway into the ballpark’s friendly confines.

“The university is known for its collegiate gothic architecture and high-pitch, orange-red gable roofs,” says Joe Walker, AIA, president of Walker Architects, the local firm that designed the stadium. “This project ran with the roof as the character-defining element of the exterior, and the final design is a direct nod to the collegiate gothic style.”

The collegiate gothic roots most clearly are seen in the stadium’s signature entryway. In addition to tying the stadium to the surrounding campus, this two-story structure elevated on brick columns makes a statement all on its own for fans — as well as Gator opponents.

“From a fan’s perspective, the geometry of the roof signals the entryway and frames the impressive — and, for a visiting team, intimidating — first glimpse of the field,” Walker says. “For a player, when you look at the elevation of the facility from the field, the central gable is a centerpiece positioned directly over home plate.”

Approximately 10,300 square feet of PAC-CLAD Tite-Loc Plus panels in a Terra Cotta finish were installed as part of the project.

While officially a “renovation,” because the original 1996 field wasn’t altered, the upgraded facility has been largely rebuilt to include a new locker room, lounge training room and press box. According to Walker, the $15 million project is a tribute to the work head coach Tim Walton has done building the team into a national presence since joining the team in 2006. Since 2008, the Gators have made it to the Women’s College World Series eight times and have earned national titles twice.

Walker says metal roof panels were an obvious choice to create a visual link to the classic clay tiles that top many of the university’s older structures. “It was the product with the best look for the project price point and, aesthetically, it fit in well in this area of campus,” he says. “Plus, it has the benefit of being low maintenance and importantly, it does a great job of keeping water out.”

The architect specified 10,300 square feet of PAC-CLAD Tite-Loc Plus from Petersen in a Terra Cotta finish for the project. He says the choice of this particular profile was aided by advice from the company’s technical staff. “It was Petersen that suggested we use the Tite-Loc Plus product with striations, knowing it would be a better product for our project with respect to minimizing oil canning and damage from potential impacts.”

Jacksonville, Florida-based Thorne Metal Systems handled the roof installation, which posed a few challenges, according to the company’s office manager Cody Thorne. “It was a particularly tight site – we could only work around the perimeter because they were working on the field,” he says, adding that the roof’s steep pitch also called for some extra attention. “It was 10:12, so a little more caution and safety were involved.”


Architect: Walker Architects, Gainesville, Florida,

Roofing Contractor: Thorne Metal Systems, Middleburg, Florida


Metal Panels: PAC-CLAD Tite-Loc Plus in a Terra Cotta, Petersen,

High-End Residence Gets New Slate and Copper Roof After a Tornado

After this home’s roof was damaged by a tornado, Precision Construction installed 22,700 square feet of slate and 3,700 square feet of copper standing seam panels. Precision Construction & Roofing

The Preston Hollow neighborhood in North Dallas is renowned for its high-end homes, but after a tornado tore through it in November 2019, many of them were left with substantial roof damage. Precision Construction & Roofing, headquartered in North Richland Hills, Texas, was tapped to replace almost 27,000 square feet of slate and copper roofing on one residence.

According to CEO Eric Hunter, Precision Construction was perfect for the job. The company specializes in complex projects and storm restoration work. “Our focus when we started the company 12 years ago was high-end residential, mainly historic,” he says, “We do all types of roofing but focus on slate, tile and copper. We’re doing more and more commercial work as the years go by, and we’re planning to launch a commercial division, so we’ll be doing a lot more commercial work in the future.”

The company is well-known for its work on historic homes featuring Ludowici tile. “We’re the Ludowici Contractor of the Year for four years running, and we’ve won Ludowici Roof of the Year for five years in a row,” notes Hunter.

This slate and copper roof was one of the biggest residential projects the company has ever tackled. “It’s a monster,” says Hunter,

The slate roof was a blend of North County Black Slate and Vermont Unfading Green.

The existing roof was comprised of copper panels and Chinese slate, which was installed by the home builder. “We tore that off — or I should say the tornado tore a lot of it off for us,” Hunter recalls. “It had extensive tornado damage. All that copper standing seam you see on the roof at the top was completely gone.”

One of the company’s salesman found a section of the copper roof draped over a power line two blocks away.

Precision dried in the damaged roof and completed the roof replacement as part of an insurance claim. After the claim was approved and slate arrived, the actual installation took about six weeks from start to finish.

One crew worked on the slate sections while another handled the copper work. “It was kind of a combined effort,” Hunter explains, “Naturally, we started with the slate, but there were parts of the standing seam we had to do before we could continue with the slate. I would say the slate was about 85 percent done, and then we did all the copper. We had to go back and actually put on the remaining 15 percent of the slate after the copper was done. There was a lot of coordination involved in that.”

Slate and Copper

For the slate sections, crews installed ice and water shield from PABCO along the eaves, valleys, hips and ridges, as well as Precision’s private labeled synthetic underlayment.

The slate roof combined products from of two different suppliers. North County Black Slate was blended with a Vermont Slate Unfading Green. “I think that North County Black is the nicest slate in the world,” Hunter notes. “It’s amazing stuff. We took that and blended it in with the Vermont S1 Grade Unfading Green.”

Slate can have natural color variation, and proper blending is essential. Hunter estimates that the blending process took 60 man-hours to complete. “The blending is all done on the ground,” he says, “We took one piece of slate from every single palette of the North Country Black and blended that together. We did the same with the Unfading Green. That was all blended, and then we blended the two colors together to come up with the percentages on the roof. When that slate was brought up on the roof and put on the toe boards, it was brought up there to be put on in that order.”

The slates had been hand punched at the quarry with two nail holes. Approximately 22,700 square feet of slate was installed using copper nails

Copper was the only option considered for the low-slope roof sections and details. “Copper should be used, in my professional opinion — if not lead — on every single slate roof in the country, no matter where it is,” Hunter says. “Copper is the only metal that can withstand freeze-thaw, the elements, and the heat for hundreds of years. In Texas, lead isn’t popular because, believe it or not, squirrels love lead. It’s like a snack to them.”

Flashing, gutters, downspouts and other details were fabricated from scratch. “Any slate or tile project we install, no matter what, has copper everything on it — drip edge, valley metal, step flashing, counterflashing,” Hunter says. “Every one of the pipe jacks you see on that roof was hand made from copper. All of the gable vents, dormer vents and any other vents were fabricated by us either on site or in our warehouse.”

Approximately 3,700 square feet of double-lock copper panels were fabricated on the site. “Those panels were taken up, and if any modifications needed to be made, we had our bender, our breaker and our cutter up there at the very top,” Hunter notes. “We hand crimped and hand bent every one of those panels up there on the roof. We made sure those double locks were nice and tight. It probably took about two weeks to do all of the copper.”

Hunter credits his experienced crews for their expert workmanship. “Where there would be a hip or a valley, everything was soldered,” he says, “Soldering is very time consuming. You’ve got to really know what you’re doing.”

Challenges included notorious Texas weather and steep terrain at the back of the house that made access difficult. The slate could only be delivered in the front and had to be carried to the back. “This house was hard because in the back the scaffolding went up three stories,” Hunter says. “There’s a patio area in the back that actually drops down a story.”

Crews were tied off 100 percent of the time for fall protection. “That roof is so steep that you have to be very careful and use every safety measure you can,” Hunter says. “Those standing seam roofs are 45 or 50 feet up in the air.”

The completed project shows off the craftsmanship that is the hallmark of the company, according to Hunter. “It was a very, very time-consuming job, but it was not rushed,” he says. “Our slogan at Precision is ‘#We Build Pretty Roofs.’ It’s kind of spread. People will say, ‘You’re the guys who build the pretty roofs!’ That’s been our hashtag and our motto for years. We just really take pride in our work.”


Roofing Contractor: Precision Construction & Roofing, North Richland Hills, Texas,


Slate: North Country Black, North Country Slate,, and Vermont Unfading Green, Vermont Slate Company,

Copper: Double-lock standing seam copper panels

Addiction Treatment Center’s Roof Offers Great Aesthetics, Low Maintenance

Situated on a 96-acre campus, Wellbridge Addiction Treatment and Research Center consists of six buildings featuring composite shake roofing. Photos: DaVinci Roofscapes

Take exit 69 off the Long Island Expressway, and that’s where you’ll immediately find the impressive new Wellbridge Addiction Treatment and Research Center. The 96-acre campus in Calverton, New York, consists of six buildings, all of which have composite shake roofing overhead.

Opened in April 2020, the 80-bed facility includes a two-story main building. This structure houses the primary treatment facility, labs, care sections and auditorium. It also has a dining room, chapel and a variety of offices.

The massive main building connects to other buildings via paved garden paths. The campus, which has 134,000 square feet of space, includes a short-term care building, wellness center, creative expression center, and maintenance building.

“We designed this complex with low maintenance in mind,” says Ron Whelan, senior project manager for Engel Burman. “The DaVinci Roofscapes composite shake product fits our needs. We want the exteriors of the buildings as easy-care as possible.”

“Our company has used DaVinci’s synthetic roofing products in the past,” Whelan notes. “The Bristal Assisted Living project in Garden City, New York, also features DaVinci’s low maintenance roofing tiles. The product looks great at both facilities. I believe it’s a beautiful composite roofing product that seems to hold up well to the environment with no fading or other problems.”

Largest Project to Date

Soon after the project started, the team at Premier Building & Renovations Corp. was brought in. Their task was to install DaVinci Bellaforté Shake roofing on the structures as they were built. Their work started in February of 2019, and completed 10 months later in October.

“This is the largest DaVinci project we’ve ever tackled,” says Robert Foreman, owner of Premier Building & Renovations Corp. “We had ten people working on this project continually. The Bellaforté Shake product is great to work with. It’s lightweight and installs easily.”

Premier Building & Renovations is proud to point to this project as an example of the company’s outstanding workmanship. “In the five years we’ve been installing DaVinci composite roofing tiles, we average about three or four major projects a year,” says Foreman. “No matter how many roofs we do in the future, this project will stand out for many years to come. The Weathered Gray shake tiles give both a unified and unique look to this complex of buildings. The composite shake tiles look great and provide the owners with the low-maintenance roof they wanted.”


Designer: Engel Burman, Jericho, New York,

Roofing Contractor: Premier Building & Renovations Corp., Farmingdale, New York,


Synthetic Shake: Bellaforté Shake, DaVinci Roofscapes,

John Ball Zoo’s Green Legacy Extends to Rooftops

The green roof on the meerkat habitat features native plants including Pennsylvania Sedge, Prairie Dropseed, and Lance-leaved Tickweed. Photos: LiveRoof

Since 1884, John Ball Zoo’s 40-acre stretch of land has continued to flourish in the heart of Grand Rapids, Michigan. At the turn of the 20th century, the zoo population consisted of local favorites such as raccoons and deer. By 1927, Charles Lindbergh deemed the park a popular enough site to address crowds of onlookers after his trans-Atlantic flight. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, the zoo expanded exponentially, adding a number of new exhibits including Monkey Island, an aviary, and an aquarium. In 1983, John Ball Zoo was the first zoo in Michigan to receive accreditation from American Zoo and Aquarium Association. Moving through the 21st century, the zoo continues to thrive with its innovative tiger exhibit, and a growing list of additions such as its most recent meerkat habitat.

John Ball Zoo has been a proponent of sustainability in all facets of its design — from the conservation of animals to creation of green spaces that make up the foundations to many of its exhibits. Living walls and living roofs are already a part of that architectural landscape, thanks to local experts such as LiveRoof, LLC. For more than a decade, John Ball Zoo and LiveRoof have turned many of its habitat roofs into viable and beautiful green spaces.

Living walls and living roofs are a big part of the zoo’s architectural landscape, including this green roof atop the bobcat exhibit.

In keeping with this partnership, a new milestone was recently reached. John Ball Zoo has built a first in the nation meerkat habitat that is SITES-centered. A new green certification that considers all aspects of a building’s sustainability, SITES is a set of comprehensive, voluntary guidelines together with a rating system that assesses the sustainable design, construction, and maintenance of landscapes. Unlike other green certifications, SITES is a voluntary assessment that is used from the earliest drafting phases, to the outlook of upkeep and maintenance for the foreseeable future. The zoo’s goal is to be certified with SITES Gold Certification, which would make John Ball Zoo the first zoo in the country to receive this rating and the first SITES v2.0 project in Michigan.

The meerkat habitat building is topped with the LiveRoof Deep system pre-grown with native plants in locally sourced growing medium. “While John Ball Zoo’s other green roofs are populated with sedum and allium selections, this one is different because it contains native grasses and herbaceous perennials,” says Allmon Forrester, the zoo’s horticultural director. According to Forrester, the existing relationship with LiveRoof was most important in selecting a green roof system because of the work their team has done with the zoo on multiple buildings and habitat enclosures. Forrester’s team worked closely with LiveRoof and J&L Roofing, the contractor that installed the green roof system, to secure the necessary documentation on the sustainability of the system, its growing and production methods, and plants.

The roof system beneath the living roof consisted of two layers of 3-inch polyiso insulation, DensDeck Prime cover board set in foam adhesive, adhered 60-mil EPDM membrane and a 60-mil EPDM slip sheet.

In 2008, John Ball Zoo’s first LiveRoof was installed atop the building in the lion habitat. Since then, additional green roof systems from LiveRoof have been planted atop buildings in habitats for monkeys, chimpanzees, bobcats, bears, and meerkats. Not only have the roofs been sustainable and met requirements for a number of green certifications, but they also have proved an aesthetic asset to the make-up of the zoo.


Architect/Builder: Wolverine Building Group, Grand Rapids, Michigan,

Roofing Contractor: J&L Roofing, Grand Rapids, Michigan,

Green Roof Designer/Supplier: LiveRoof, LLC, Nunica, Michigan,


Green Roof: LiveRoof Deep System, LiveRoof,

Quality Workmanship Ensures Top Performance of Stadium’s Roof

The grandstand and buildings of Liberty University’s softball stadium were topped with 19,000 square feet of metal roofing. Photos: NB Handy

When Liberty University wanted errorless work on the roof of its new softball stadium, the college turned to Roanoke, Virginia-based Mountain Roofing.

Mountain Roofing has served the Southwest Virginia market since 1998, focusing primarily on commercial projects. According to Adam Gheen, the company’s vice president, Mountain Roofing’s skilled crews are experienced in all types of roof systems including EPDM, TPO, standing seam metal, copper, slate, and asphalt shingles. The company also excels in historic restoration applications.

Gheen estimates that 40 percent of the company’s work involves metal roofing. When the roofing portion of Kamphuis Field at Liberty Softball Stadium was put out for big by Branch Builds, the general contractor, Gheen was confident his crews could execute the job. “I bid the project and coordinated it until the day the punch list was done,” he says.

The roof panel specified for the project was Fabral Power Seam 16-inch, 24 gauge Dark Bronze with shadow lines — a product often specified by the school to ensure campus-wide consistency on all metal roofing projects.

Fabral Power Seam 16-inch roof panels in Dark Bronze with shadow lines were specified for the project.

Kamphuis Field at Liberty Softball Stadium was designed to provide fans a great venue to watch softball action. The field is named after Dwayne Kamphuis, a legendary fast-pitch softball pitcher who played with Eddie “The King” Feigner as part of the renowned “King and His Court” traveling softball team.

The stadium includes 1,000 chairback seats, home, visitor and umpires’ locker rooms, as well as a team room, situation room, training room, coaches’ offices, indoor batting tunnels, two full bullpens, and a state-of-the-art press box.

Approximately 19,000 square feet of metal roofing was installed on the grandstand and buildings making up the complex. “We were left with the exposed metal deck,” Gheen recalls. “We installed two layers of insulation, which were mechanically attached, with an air and vapor barrier over top of that — Henry Blueskin RF200. After it was dried in and watertight, then we started installing the metal panels.”

The material distributor on the project was NB Handy. The prefabricated panels were brought in by tractor trailers and lifted to the roof by a crane. The panels are held in place with clips and mechanically seamed. The safety plan called for workers to be tied off at all times.

The project went smoothly, notes Gheen, with one exception. “This one was fairly straightforward. The one thing I remember is mud,” he says. “There was a lot of mud. That was a fairly big issue, not only for installation but safety.”

Workers had to take care to make sure mud did not cause any safety hazards, especially while climbing ladders. At times, crew members were forced to change out their boots before going up to the roof. “We had to keep the ladders as clean as possible, and of course, the roof surface had to be kept clean.”

Mountain Roofing has handled other projects at the university, so it was well prepared for the stadium installation. “The majority of the roofs are the Fabral Power-seam panel,” says Gheen. “They’ve been running that metal for years, and it’s a lifetime product. It’s the industry standard at LU.”

According to Gheen, the workmanship on the project shows what sets Mountain Roofing apart. “We’re known for our quality,” he says. “We really don’t press the ‘quantity’ button. Quality, all the way around — that’s what we base our company on. That shows through all of the products that we run.”


General Contractor: Branch Builds, Roanoke, Virginia,

Roofing Contractor: Mountain Roofing, Roanoke, Virginia,

Distributor: NB Handy, Lynchburg, Virginia,


Metal Panels: Fabral Power Seam 16 inch, 24 gauge Dark Bronze with shadow lines, Fabral,

Underlayment: Blueskin RF200, Henry Company,

New Synthetic Cedar Roof Now Tops Arboretum

When the cedar shake roof on the Cox Arboretum had to be replaced, the decision was made to install synthetic cedar shakes manufactured by Brava Roof Tile. Photos: Brava Roof Tile

Anyone from Dayton, Ohio, will tell you that the 174-acre Cox Arboretum is one of the premier places to visit in the city, thanks to the daily free admission and neighboring Gardens MetroPark, which offers more beautiful gardens and green space for visitors to enjoy. For more than 50 years, the Arboretum has wowed residents and tourists alike. With its numerous trees, shrubs, specialty gardens, mature forests, and even prairies, it isn’t difficult to understand why.

Just the building itself can grab a visitor’s attention, with its beautifully curved design and cedar shake roof. These two features have become synonymous with the arboretum and the roof, in particular, is something the board at the arboretum hoped to preserve. Therefore, naturally, when it came time to replace the aging cedar shakes everyone loved so dearly, the board members wanted to do it right. They decided to go to Dayton-based architect Greg L. Lauterbach and contractor E. Lee Construction, a company that has been in business since 1955.

Choosing Synthetic

The board was soon faced with another decision: should they keep the real cedar shakes, which can be costly and difficult to maintain, or should they go a more modern route? While they wanted to preserve the roof’s look, they also wanted to ensure it was durable and long-lasting, and, for that reason, they decided to switch to synthetic shakes.

Sierra Brava Shakes on three different buildings on the Cox Arboretum’s property.
Brava’s standard cavity-back roofing shingles were used in the field of the roof, while “solids” were installed on the large turret.

They chose to go with synthetic cedar roofing for many different reasons. For one, while appearances are naturally important for Cox Arboretum, more important was the roof’s ability to handle the various types of weather conditions seen in Western Ohio. This area sees everything from seasonal rains, hailstorms, and high winds to heavy snow loads and extreme temperature fluctuations. As a result, it was critical to choose a roofing material that wouldn’t easily break or damage under such conditions. A synthetic cedar roof was chosen for its durability. The next step was making sure it captured the look of authentic cedar shake.

Lauterbach wasted no time in collecting samples of synthetic cedar shakes from various manufacturers for review. In the end, he chose to go with Brava Roof Tile for “the aesthetics of the tile and long lifespan.” Unlike some other brands, Brava Shakes truly mimic real cedar, offering lengths of 5 inches, 7 inches, and 12 inches, and varied thickness to recreate that classic split texture of natural wood.

The building is known for its curved design and distinctive turret

These aren’t the only reasons Brava was chosen, however. When it comes to durable roofing products with a long lifespan, Brava Roof Tile is among the industry’s toughest. Their synthetic shingles offer up to a Class A fire rating, a Class 4 impact rating, and can withstand wind speeds over 110 mph. Moreover, an installed Brava roof weighs a mere 350 pounds per roofing square, much less than some competitors and less than real cedar roofing shakes.

Brava Shake comes in a wide range of colors meant to mimic real wood. Lauterbach took his time before deciding on the Sierra Shake, a lighter wood-toned option with some darker highlights. He went with the Sierra Shake because it “best mimics the look of real wood shingles while having the benefits of composite.”

Ensuring an Authentic Look

As an arboretum, a place dedicated to trees and nature, having a natural-looking roof was critical. So, one of the board’s primary concerns was ensuring the most authentic appearance possible. Another major concern was how the Brava shingles would look on the property’s large turret. The decision was made was to purchase “solids” rather than Brava’s standard cavity-back roofing shingles for the turret.

Unlike traditional cedar roofs, a Brava roof is easy to install, with no breakage and no special tools required. While it is easier to install than other roofing options, neither E. Lee Construction nor Lauterbach had previously worked with Brava. The company representatives took a day to train them before they went to work on the Cox Arboretum project, ensuring crews knew what to do each step of the way. With that training, E. Lee Construction headed the project and completed it seamlessly. In the end, they installed the Sierra Brava Shakes on three different buildings on the Cox Arboretum’s property.

Cox Arboretum has a beautiful, realistic synthetic cedar roof thanks to Brava Roof Tile. Visitors continue to admire the exterior, and many are not aware that it isn’t a real cedar roof. Now, the Arboretum no longer has to worry about extensive roof repairs or maintenance, or even about what will happen to the roof in certain types of weather.

After this project, E. Lee Construction has gone on to use Brava Roof Tile on other projects throughout Ohio, proving it is a realistic, durable choice that will stand the test of time.


Architect: Greg L. Lauterbach Architect, LLC, Dayton, Ohio,

Roofing Contractor: E. Lee Construction, Delphos, Ohio,


Synthetic Shake: Brava Cedar Shake in Sierra, Brava Roof Tile,

Innovative Approach Solves Re-Roofing Puzzle at Oceanside Resort

The existing metal roof on the Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove was removed and replaced with 30,000 square feet of the Sarnafil Decor PVC roof system. Photos: Coatings Application & Waterproofing Co.

Sometimes re-roofing projects are pretty straightforward. Others can present a complex puzzle. Sometimes looking at things in a different light can lead to an unexpected solution that proves more cost-effective and less intrusive for the building and its occupants.

The Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove in Miami, Florida, serves as an excellent example. The hotel consists of two 26-story towers, and each was topped with a standing-seam metal roof, with steep sections transitioning to sloped roof sections at their base.

When the original standing seam roof reached the end of its service life, the owners solicited bids to replace it with a new standing-seam metal roof. The installation would require large construction cranes to be mounted near the entrance of the property.

Bill Devine, area manager for Coatings Application & Waterproofing Co., was convinced a new metal roof was not the answer. He proposed installing the Sarnafil Décor PVC system as an alternative, asserting it would be more cost-effective, more durable and less invasive to the hotel owners and guests.

Devine’s intimate knowledge of the jobsite helped him craft his plan. “We had an existing relationship at the Ritz,” he explains. “We went in about nine years before that to repair the metal roof that was up there. We patched it after some storms and painted it for them. We’ve helped them out with some other stuff over the years, and the consultants came in to talk to them about taking the metal roof off and putting a new metal roof back on it. That’s when I got involved to try to convince them otherwise.”

There were several key factors influencing Devine’s recommendation, including the harsh, corrosive oceanside environment, which is tough on metal. “I convinced them to use the Sarnafil PVC Decor Rib System, which has the appearance of a standing seam metal roof,” Devine says. “The average person who looks at it doesn’t know it’s not a metal roof, but it’s all PVC. The way I designed it, there is not one piece of exposed metal that can rust anymore.”

With the PVC system, all the roofing materials could be brought up using the service elevators, eliminating the need for a crane. To top it off, it would be less expensive than a new metal roof.

“What got us the job was when I gave him my price for the Sarnafil and told him I wouldn’t have to have a 200-300 foot crane sitting in front of the Ritz Carlton for eight months,” notes Devine. “I took the entire roof off and put the whole new roof on using the service elevator.”

Challenging Installation

Coatings Application & Waterproofing (CAW) installed approximately 30,000 square feet of the PVC system. The steepness of the roof sections posed obvious challenges, and CAW developed special swing stages to remove the existing metal roofing and install the Decor system. “That’s 250 feet in the air with a 23/12 pitch,” notes Devine. “It’s almost a wall.”

Coatings Application & Waterproofing used special swing stages to remove the existing roof and install the PVC system.

A detailed safety plan was paramount. Crew members had to be tied off 100 percent of the time, and all tools were tethered. Anchor points were attached to the building’s heavy-duty steel framing at the top of the towers. “We drilled through that and put anchors through those big beams and ran our safety lines and swing stages through that,” says Devine.

The plan was to take everything up through the roof hatches, including the swing stages, which were engineered to fold up for transport. Debris was taken out the same way.

“We pulled all of the metal off a section at a time and dropped it down through the roof hatch,” explains Devine. “Each side had a roof hatch and we dropped it through there to the floor. We had guys inside who separated the trash from the metal and stacked it. We recycled all of the metal.”

Logistics at the jobsite were very tight. “The property doesn’t really have a parking lot area — it has a parking garage — so we had no place to put dumpsters. We just had a few spots down in the parking lot to stack insulation and rolls, and we took material up the freight elevator whenever we were ready for it.”

Recycled metal and debris were also taken out via the freight elevator. “We brought it down on a Friday, and we had a guy with a truck who would meet us at the loading dock. We’d load all of the trash in his truck and he’d take it to the dump,” Devine says. “There was nothing easy about it.”

Work on the project included installing new drains, tapered insulation and PVC membrane in the internal gutters.

As the metal roof was torn off in sections, roof areas were covered with 1.5-inch isocyanurate insulation with quarter-inch DensDeck bonded to it with adhesive. The pre-assembled 4-foot-by-4-foot boards caused some difficulties. “We had to make modifications to the swing stage so they could stack insulation on it,” notes Devine. “We dropped all of the trash down through the roof hatch, but when we went to pull our insulation up, it wouldn’t fit through the roof hatch. We cut a 5-foot-by-1-foot hole in the roof deck on each side of the building and had the guys hand the insulation up through the slot in the roof deck. They’d stack it on the stage, take it up and start installing it.”

The insulation panels were fastened to the 20-gauge steel decking with 3-inch #15 screws and insulation plates, and a Sarnafil vapor barrier membrane was installed. The slots cut in the deck were repaired using flat-stock steel.

The Patina Green PVC membrane was adhered using Sarnacol 2170 adhesive. Crews on the swing stages worked from top to bottom, adhering about 2 feet at a time. “When they got to the bottom, then they would go back up to the top with welders and weld the laps,” Devine explains.

Applying the Decor ribs with a hot-air welder was the last part of the process. The swing stages had to be modified for this step as well. “We had to be held off far enough that we could run our welder and still keep it in a straight line,” Devine recalls. “It was a fun one.”

Work on the project included the internal gutter systems and mechanical areas. “Each corner has an internal gutter that extends 15 feet down one side and 15 feet down the other. Those were completely shot,” says Devine. “The only thing that saved them was the concrete underneath. Everything above was shot. We had to put tapered insulation and the Sarnafil membrane in those and put new drains in.”

There was no exposed metal on the project, according to Devine. The hips and ridges were made from SarnaClad Patina Green metal, which is wrapped in PVC, and the metal framing was also wrapped with PVC membrane.

Award-Winning Work

Work on the project began in February 2019 and was completed in November 2019, ahead of schedule. The project received the Sarnafil Project of the Year award for 2019. “Winning that award is a pretty good feeling,” says Devine. “We went through a lot, and Sarnafil was there to help us out.”

Detailed planning was crucial to the project’s success. “I had the luxury of plenty of time to think about all of the different things we were going to have to do,” Devine notes. “We had to make some changes out in the field, like cutting a hole in the deck, but most of it went pretty smoothly.”

Devine credits CAW’s experienced team for the success of the project. “I had a good crew,” he says, “Our foreman, Bob Hinojosa, he’s been with me for 30 years, and he is just good.”

According to Devine, this project demonstrates CAW’s ability to execute difficult projects. “We find the best way to do it,” Devine says.


Roofing Contractor: Coatings Application & Waterproofing Co., Saint Louis, Missouri,   


PVC Roof System: Sarnafil Decor Roof System, Sika Sarnafil,

Cover Board: DensDeck, Georgia-Pacific,

At the Boulder JCC, Rooftop Solar Fulfills Several Key Priorities

The Solar Revolution installed a photovoltaic array located on multiple rooftops on the campus of the Boulder Jewish Community Center. Photos: S-5!

The 52,444-square-foot Boulder Jewish Community Center (Boulder JCC) was conceived as a contemporary interpretation of sustainable design. The campus was designed and built by Colorado-based RB+B Architects and Calcon Constructors, who desired to create something beautiful, functional and unique. Construction included a wing for daycare and education, a gymnasium and fitness center, a full commercial kitchen, a community hall with a state-of-the-art stage, a library, administrative offices and a large outdoor gathering area, complete with a fireplace.

The Boulder JCC is a 501c3, nonprofit organization. Sustainability, energy efficiency and education are priorities for its members. The goal was to incorporate rooftop solar during the initial construction, but the budget wouldn’t allow it. After the complex was built, the challenge was to find a cost-effective photovoltaic (PV) solution that presented a solid return on investment, which would make the project a no-brainer from a financial standpoint.

Installing solar panels on the standing seam metal roof provided excellent visibility for the solar system, increasing its viability as an educational tool.

The Solar Revolution, a PV system designer and installer located in Boulder, was there to help. Doug Claxton, principal and founder of The Solar Revolution, advised the Boulder JCC that grants from the City of Boulder and Boulder County were available for helping nonprofits go solar. The high visibility of the PV system and the educational opportunities afforded by solar power were important to both the Boulder JCC and the grant committees, and the project was approved.

The Boulder JCC now has a 74.4kW PV array located on multiple rooftops, including the highly visible and gently curved standing seam metal roof and a low-slope TPO roof. In addition to solar on the main facility, a 7.2kW array is installed on the adjacent barn at the “Milk and Honey Farm.” The farm is 100 percent powered by solar and serves as a valuable tool for the Boulder JCC’s educational and preschool programs.

Adding Solar Power

Work on the project was done in phases, beginning with the Firestone UC-3 double lock standing seam metal roof over the gymnasium. “We did the solar on the metal roof first because that’s the most cost-effective place to do it, using S-5!’s clamps and PVKIT,” notes Claxton. “So, we did that, and then a year later, another round of grant money was available, so we were able to do even more solar up there on the flat roof.”

Installing solar panels on the roof would provide excellent visibility and have a lower initial cost than the low-slope roof sections. “That’s one reason we actually won the job, along with the grants,” Claxton recalls. “We quoted it and when they saw the number, they said, ‘That’s much less expensive than we had anticipated.’”

Solar modules for metal roof installation were secured with the S-5-PVKIT 2.0, which provides a simple, secure, economical attachment method with no penetrations.

The key to the metal roof installation was the S-5-PVKIT 2.0, which provides a simple, secure, economical method for attaching solar modules with no penetrations. The PVKIT’s pre-assembled components enable installers to directly attach PV modules to the roof’s standing seams using S-5! clamps and brackets, which is faster and more economical than a traditional rail mounting system.

“I think a standing seam metal roof is hands down the best roof for solar just because of the fact that we don’t penetrate, and it installs so quickly,” Claxton says. “What’s unique about the S-5! system with their PVKIT is that we don’t use a traditional support rail underneath the panels. With the S-5! kit, the panels rest right on the kit. You eliminate the rail, so you cut your material costs down quite a bit. You also cut the labor cost quite a bit.”

The safety plan called for traditional fall protection equipment, which was also easy to implement on the metal roof. “There are a couple of companies that make really good fall protection equipment for standing seam metal, so again that’s the beauty of a standing seam roof — there are no penetrations for the solar mounting, and we use fall protection that doesn’t damage the roof,” Claxton notes.

The installation method eliminates concerns about violating the manufacturer’s warranty. “In order to route the power from the roof down, we just did a conduit detail around the eave,” says Claxton. “In this case we didn’t penetrate the roof and the steel deck at all. And we got all those solar panels on in two days with a four-man crew. It’s really pretty darn simple.”

The Second Phase

When solar was added to the flat roof, The Solar Revolution developed a hybrid system using both ballast and mechanical attachment. “We installed the Ecolibrium system, which is a ballasted solution that uses concrete pavers to essentially weigh the system down,” Claxton explains. “In this case, though, with our windspeeds being as high as they are, we introduced about a dozen mechanical attachments interspersed throughout, and that allowed us to get the designed windspeed without making the system too heavy.”

Attachments were made using the U Anchor 2400 from Anchor Products, which is fastened to the deck and features TPO flap that’s bonded to it. “What we do is zip it in and have a roofer come in right after us and weld the TPO down,” Claxton says. “For every attachment we do, it eliminates the need for 420 pounds of concrete block, so it helps us keep our ballast weight in check on these systems. It gives us a lot of peace of mind that the system is not going anywhere. Even though we have to penetrate, it’s such a good flashing detail that I would argue it’s better than any pipe jack out there in terms of its watertightness.”

The solar installations went smoothly, according to Claxton, and The Solar Revolution is preparing another grant application for the third phase of the project.

“The only challenge was working around a facility that has events going practically 24-7,” he says. “We had to make sure we were being safe, especially working in areas above people. There were no real challenges other than coordinating the work in an operational facility.”

According to Claxton, the project illustrates the company’s strengths, which include finding the optimal way to design and install the PV system. “We were the only company to propose utilizing the standing seam metal roof,” he says. “We are very good at analyzing the site and finding the best solution, which isn’t always the most obvious solution. That standing seam is like a barrel vault — it has a gentle curve to it — and a lot of companies don’t think to use that because of the curve, but the S-5! system allows us to contour that curve perfectly.”

The aesthetics of the solar system were an important consideration as well as ROI. “Again, the JCC is doing solar because they also want it to be a learning tool, and the city’s grant wants it to be visible, so by using the metal roof we achieved the goal of visibility,” says Claxton. “They are putting solar all over their campus so they can reduce their energy costs and have more money to put into these early childhood programs. They also help educate kids on renewable energy and sustainability. It’s all part of their mission. As a nonprofit, anything they can do to reduce their energy costs is beneficial.”


Architect: RB+B Architects, Fort Collins, Colorado,

General Contractor: Calcon Constructors, Englewood, Colorado,

Roofing Contractor: Douglass Colony, Commerce City, Colorado,

Solar Installer: The Solar Revolution, Boulder, Colorado,


Solar Module and Inverter: LG Solar,, SolarEdge

Metal Roof Attachment: S-5-PVKIT 2.0, S-5!,

Low-Slope Attachment: Ecolibrium,, and U2400, Anchor Products LLC,

How to Achieve a Balanced Approach to Ventilation

Intake vents at the eaves allow cool, dry outside air to be drawn up into the attic, while exhaust vents at the ridge direct moist, warm air out of the attic and back into the environment. A balanced ventilation system, with equal distribution of intake and exhaust vents, helps optimize air exchange and prevents problems including ice dams. Photos: Owens Corning Roofing

What do blisters, bumps, and mole runs on a home’s roof have in common? Beyond detracting from exterior curb appeal, they may indicate a ventilation problem contributing to a range of comfort and performance concerns. Even the highest-performing roofing system will not deliver its full performance if a home’s roof is not properly ventilated.

Below, we look at how a balanced approach to ventilation supports a home’s structural performance and its occupants’ comfort. Balanced ventilation can prevent problems ranging from ice dams on a home’s exterior during winter to uncomfortable indoor humidity in the summer.

Ventilation supports the natural flow of air into and out of the home’s attic space. The forces of wind pressure and thermal effect work together to ventilate the attic. Intake vents allow cool, dry outside air to be drawn up into the attic, while exhaust system components direct the flow of excess heat out of the attic and back into the environment. A balanced ventilation system has an equal distribution of intake and exhaust vents (50 percent near the eave and 50 percent near the ridge), helping optimize air exchange and supporting effective thermal and moisture management.

Balance between intake and exhaust is key. Inadequate intake vents can cause negative air pressure air blowing across the roof surface to force higher pressure air to move outside the attic. As the displaced attic air needs to be replaced, insufficient intake ventilation will cause air to be drawn in through exhaust vents, potentially drawing in moisture/precipitation from outside.

Managing both the roof’s thermal and moisture profiles demands a balanced approach to ventilation. This balanced approach is comprised of three components: ample insulation, balanced ventilation, and controlled airflow through proper sealing and insulation — the ABCs of ventilation.

Ample Amount

The International Building Code (IBC) and International Residential Code (IRC) require a minimum ventilation ratio of 1:150 (1 square foot of vent area for each 150 square feet of attic/roof area). If certain requirements are met, such as balanced ventilation, the ratio can be reduced to 1:300. Always consult local codes for specific requirements. Owens Corning recommends a 1:150 ratio combined with balanced intake and exhaust ventilation. The free online Owens Corning ventilation calculator ( is a practical tool for informing insulation levels. By entering square footage or the metrics of the space, users can determine how much ventilation is required for the space.

Properly installed insulation supports a balanced approach to ventilation in the attic space.

Ample ventilation is about much more than code compliance. Properly installed, vents can help manage moisture that leads to performance problems. For example, in cold climates, high moisture levels inside (from showers, cooking, fish tanks, etc.) combined with cold outside air can cause frost to form on the interior of the roof deck, posing a risk for dry rot to occur. By keeping the roof deck temperature closer to the outdoor temperature, ventilation may also reduce ice dam occurrences, which can lead to water leaks on steep-sloped roofs. And in hot climates or during summertime, ventilation helps exchange hot attic air with cooler outdoor air, contributing to a more comfortable home.

Balanced Ventilation

Good ventilation requires a 50/50 balance between intake and exhaust vents to keep conditioned air inside the house and out of the attic. As exhaust vents (typically ridge vents or off-ridge vents) pull air out of the attic, the intake vents replace this “lost” air, drawing in air from outside. Location of the vents is also very important. Intake vents should be installed in soffits or lower on the roof slope near the eaves. An imbalance between intake and exhaust vents can create negative pressure in the attic, drawing in air from the conditioned part of the home via the ceiling, wall cracks, lighting fixtures and/or joints in the framing. This situation can result in a less comfortable indoor environment, lost energy, and higher heating/cooling bills. In no case should the amount of exhaust ventilation exceed the amount of intake ventilation.

Controlled Airflow

The amount of moisture generated by human activities inside the average home is significant. A common estimate is that a family of four’s combined activities will contribute 1.3 gallons of water per day to the home’s indoor environment.

When trapped in various elements of the roofing system, liquid or vapor moisture contributes to problems ranging from structural damage to mildew and indoor odors. Similar to temperature differences, moisture in the air can lead to deck deflection as the wood in the roof deck deteriorates and warps. Too much humidity may also have a corrosive effect on metal components in the attic, including ductwork and HVAC equipment. Inside the home, high relative humidity may help facilitate the formation of mildew or peeling paint.

External Factors To Consider

In addition to proper balance of intake and exhaust vents, adequate insulation, and controlled moisture, other less-controllable factors may also influence ventilation rates — including variations in wind speed, wind direction, and surrounding topography. While higher wind speeds tend to increase ventilation rates, ventilation rates at a given wind speed may vary by a factor of 10. Ventilation rates are highest when the airflow/wind direction is perpendicular to intake openings. Ventilation rates decrease as wind direction becomes more parallel to the opening. Even topography can influence ventilation by influencing the speed and direction of wind. For example, the number and location of nearby structures, a home’s height, trees/vegetation, and variance in surrounding elevations can all affect the flow of wind. Predicting the impact of these factors requires sophisticated building science technologies, which can serve as useful tools for comparative analysis and help influence product innovations.

Modeling and Building Science

Owens Corning uses advanced technologies to inform ventilation approaches for mitigating thermal and moisture challenges. For example, computer simulations were used to evaluate how different ventilation strategies would impact attic temperature. Using AtticSim software, team members simulated temperatures in a Tampa, Florida attic during one week in July. The modeled attic had a gabled construction, measured 50 feet by 27 feet with a 4:12 roof slope, and had R-30 insulation installed in the ceiling. The analysis evaluated two ventilation schemes: one with balanced ventilation (soffit-to-ridge) and one with unbalanced ventilation (soffit-to-soffit only). As a “control” measure, a sealed attic (attic without vents at the soffit and the ridge) was also evaluated. Analysis reveals that temperatures in a sealed attic without any ventilation exceeded 140 degrees Fahrenheit. The balanced ventilation between intake and exhaust was effective in reducing temperature in the attic when compared to the soffit-only approach. The balanced ventilation reflected a temperature difference of more than 30 degrees when compared to the soffit ventilation approach.

What practical application can we make of this building science research to inform a ventilation strategy? This analysis shows the benefits of a balanced approach. When the roof’s intake and exhaust system is balanced, the benefit of wind pressure and buoyancy-induced ventilation work together to increase air exchange and lower attic temperatures. The unbalanced approach (soffit-to-soffit only) is more variable and does not lead to the same air temperature reduction. The unbalanced, soffit-only ventilation is less effective and appears to be impacted by changes in wind speed and direction.

At the end of the day, it doesn’t take a building scientist to understand the benefits of getting the ventilation right with a balanced approach. Balanced ventilation keeps homeowners more comfortable, contributes to the roof system’s proper functioning, and helps a contractor walk away with confidence, protecting both the businesses’ reputation and the bottom line.

About the authors: Lucas Console is Product Manager – Owens Corning Roofing and Greg Keeler is Technical Service Leader  Owens Corning Roofing. For more information, visit