Insulated Metal Panels Save Time and Labor in Construction of Inmate Hospital

An insulated metal panel system from All Weather Insulated Panels was chosen for the project because of its durability, energy efficiency and ease of installation.

An insulated metal panel system from All Weather Insulated Panels was chosen for the project because of its durability, energy efficiency and ease of installation.

Under pressure from the federal government, the state of California had to build a new health care facility for its prison inmates—and do it fast. The logistics were daunting.

Planning for the 144-acre construction site that became the California Health Care Facility inmate hospital in Stockton, Calif., had to account for 1,700 personnel on the site at any one time. Physically, it was an imposing project: 23 buildings adding up to 1.2 million square feet, with 792,000 square feet of roofing.

Since there was very little space to store roofing material on site, it became clear in the planning stages that production had to be paced with installation, and a choreographed dance of trucks, forklifts, and installation crews had to be executed well in extremely compact areas.

That’s when using an insulated metal panel (IMP) system from All Weather Insulated Panels (AWIP) of Vacaville, Calif., dawned on the team at Roland Construction in Stockton.

The team realized using IMPs could save in both onsite manpower and installation time. “This being the largest project Roland has ever completed, as well as the demand for over 50 of our workers on site, plus personnel from other companies, the challenges were formidable,” said Jim Hoagland, the owner of Roland Construction.

Roof Materials

Representatives of Roland and the general contractor firm of Clark/McCarthy worked with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) prior to the bid date to make sure that the IMP roof system would be acceptable to the state. Not only was it deemed acceptable, the state considered IMPs an upgraded component in the final design-build package submitted for consideration. The specification was amended to include insulated metal panels for the architectural roofing before sub-contractors submitted bids.

After the bids were opened, Roland Construction and AWIP earned the opportunity. In January 2012, work began immediately on the design of the 23 buildings. AWIP’s 4-inch thick SR-2 standing seam insulated roof panel with a 22-gage outer skin coated in Natural Green Kynar paint became the choice. The excellent insulating properties of the sandwich-style panel with an R-value equal to 32 in the darker color complied with the project’s LEED Silver Certification.

Roof Report

In May 2012, three five-man crews began work on adding the insulated metal panels to the roof. It soon became apparent that each crew could install panels quickly, safely and efficiently.

Over the course of six months, each crew using a small crane could install up to 7,650 square feet of roofing, meaning 15 workers added a total of nearly 23,000 square feet of roofing per day. Following behind the roof paneling crews were several other crews installing AWIP 2-and-half-inch DM40 wall panels, flashings, and trim to encapsulate the 192 fixtures that allowed natural light into the buildings.

The California Health Care Facility in Stockton is comprised of 23 buildings on 144 acres. A total of 792,000 square feet of roofing was installed on the project.

The California Health Care Facility in Stockton is comprised of 23 buildings on 144 acres. A total of 792,000 square feet of roofing was installed on the project.


The use of a vacuum lifter provided by Automatic Panel Lifting System (APLS) of Auburn, Calif., proved essential in the installation of the panels. The APLS lifters are designed to be hung from a crane or forklift. With the proper attachment setup, they are capable of raising panels up to 60 feet long weighing approximately 600 pounds each.

With the panels being able to be lifted and released in a matter of seconds, production was increased dramatically to meet the project’s breakneck schedule.

With a total cost of $906 million, the project was California’s largest public works project in 2012. Hoagland points out that the reduction in installation man-hours not only saved schedule time, but more than made up for the additional material cost over a more traditional built-up insulation and metal roof system.

“With all the pre-planning with our supplier, AWIP, and their going the extra mile for us, we could not have accomplished this project in such an efficient and timely manner,” notes Hoagland. “The use of AWIP’s insulated metal roof panels for this project proved to be the decision that made this job feasible.”

Photos: All Weather Insulated Metal Panels

TEAM

GENERAL CONTRACTORS:
Clark/McCarthy—a joint venture of Clark Construction Co. and McCarthy Building Cos., in conjunction with Roland Construction, Stockton, Calif.

INSULATED METAL PANEL MANUFACTURER:
All Weather Insulated Panels, Vacaville, Calif.

AWIP Ready for 2020 Regulations in 2017

Insulated metal panels consist of closed-cell foam composite encased by two pieces of galvanized steel. AWIP’s SR2 roof panel has a trapezoidal design to increase the panel’s overall rigidity.

Insulated metal panels consist of closed-cell foam composite encased by two pieces of galvanized steel. AWIP’s SR2 roof panel has a trapezoidal design to increase the panel’s overall rigidity.

By 2020, as regulated by the California (CPUC) Public Utilities Commission, all new residential construction in California will have to meet Zero Net Energy (ZNE) requirements. In essence, the regulation stipulates that the amount of energy a residential building takes off the power grid must be balanced by energy the residence generates and returns to the grid.

William Lowery, the president of All Weather Insulated Metal Panels in Vacaville, California, says his company “is ready for 2020 in 2017.”

Lowery believes that insulated metal panels (IMPs)—the “sandwich-style” roofing component consisting of closed-cell foam composite encased by two pieces of galvanized steel—can propel the North American construction industry into a new era.

“Insulated metal panels are better, faster and cheaper, and we’re at the forefront of changing construction in the United States,” says Lowery.

As an example, AWIP’s SR2 roof panel has a trapezoidal design that increases the panel’s overall rigidity, making it safe for longer spans and foot traffic despite using a lighter-than-usual 26-gauge steel, which reduces overall weight.

Furthermore, according to Lowery, insulated metal panels require far less specialized equipment to install than traditional building materials and, due to their self-aligning, tongue-in-groove joinery, they are a snap to fit together. Once assembled, they provide insulating values above R-50, securing the building’s thermal envelope.

William Lowery, the president of All Weather Insulated Metal Panels, believes insulated metal panel systems can help California homeowners meet strict upcoming residential building regulations.

William Lowery, the president of All Weather Insulated Metal Panels, believes insulated metal panel systems can help California homeowners meet strict upcoming residential building regulations.

“The SR2, to name one, not only meets the new CPUC energy needs, its means a savings in needing fewer solar panels,” says Kim Harrell, vice president of sales for AWIP. “Roof panels reduce the cost of materials and construction time. They will play comply with the CPUC’s aspirations for California and have significant role in helping new and existing construction projects all over the country.”

Finally, AWIP’s SR2 roof panel with the S-5! Clips makes attaching solar panels quick and easy without piercing the underlying substrate, thereby preventing and air, vapor or water leakage.

Metl-Span Acquires Vicwest Manufacturing Plant to Better Serve Customers in Canada and the Northeast

Metl-Span, a manufacturer of insulated metal panels, announces the acquisition of the Vicwest manufacturing plant in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. The new plant allows Metl-Span the opportunity to expand and serve customers competitively within the Canadian and Northeastern U.S. markets. Metl-Span will be fulfilling existing customer orders, as well as offering its comprehensive product line to the marketplace.

Steve Zirkel, Metl-Span’s president, comments: “We are excited about the opportunity to better serve our Canadian customers. This plant acquisition will provide significant growth opportunities as the insulated metal panel market continues to gain share in the nonresidential construction market.”

Metl-Span is an affiliate of NCI Building Systems Inc.

MCA Bestows Patrick R. Bush Award to Jeff Irwin of Metl-Span

Jeff Irwin, executive vice president and general manager of the Architectural Panel Division at Metl-Span, was the recipient of the 2015 Patrick R. Bush Award presented at the Metal Construction Association winter meeting in Palm Springs, Calif.

The Patrick R. Bush Service Award recognizes one individual from a member company who has recently made significant volunteer contributions to the MCA.

Irwin is a 35-year veteran in the metal wall and roofing industry and has worked 24 years in the insulated metal panel industry. He currently serves as the chairman of the Insulated Metal Panel Council and has been deeply involved in MCA for two decades, serving on the board of directors and as president, vice president and secretary-treasurer. Irwin was cited for being “committed to the Insulated Metal Panel Council and a strong, consistent supporter of METALCON.”

A Design Firm Trusts Its Regular Roofing Contractor to Install a New-to-him Insulated Metal Panel on its Office

David Miller, owner of Alpine Roofing LLC, Durham, N.C., has been in business since 2008. He specializes in what he calls the “complete roofing package”—making sure that all the areas of a roof are properly installed so the roof system lasts for 30 years or more without any problems. Miller and his crew’s attention to detail has made him the chosen roofing contractor of Durham-based BuildSense Inc., a residential design and construction firm that has a sustainability emphasis.

BuildSense Inc. is a Durham, N.C.-based residential design and construction firm that has a sustainability emphasis. PHOTO: Catherine Wilborne Photography

BuildSense Inc. is a Durham, N.C.-based residential design and construction firm that has a sustainability emphasis. PHOTO: Catherine Wilborne Photography

Miller knew he was doing good work for BuildSense, but he was assured of this fact when BuildSense’s owners—Randall Lanou, LEED AP, MCGP, and Erik Van Mehlman, AIA, CGP—asked him to reroof the existing building that would become the firm’s new office. Not only did they trust Miller enough to reroof their practice’s new home, but they also entrusted him with a roof cover he had never installed before.

“They knew I hadn’t worked with this insulated metal panel product before,” Miller recalls. “But they said I had always done them right and they wanted to give me the opportunity to look at this type of project. It seemed like it was up our alley. We handle things we haven’t done before with attention to detail and an understanding of how water causes problems. We try to do the best job we can.”

Sustainability Focus

BuildSense’s new office at 502 Rigsbee in Durham was built in 1945 as a farm-equipment-maintenance building. The structure had spent its last 30 years as various automotive service centers. The 1-story, 6,000-square-foot solid masonry building had optimal orientation to achieve Lanou and Mehlman’s daylighting and solarpower goals. By adding a second story in which BuildSense and tenants (occupied today by a marketing firm and a yoga studio) could operate, Clear-Vue Glass, BuildSense’s partner in the building’s purchase, could maintain an office, fabrication facility and showroom at pedestrian level.

To create the most energy-efficient building possible, Lanou and Mehlman opted to take the existing structure down to its skeleton, leaving only the masonry shell and primary steel columns and girders. Originally, they planned to maintain the existing roof and build the second story on top. However, the roof sloped from north to south about 3 inches for drainage. The partners decided to remove the wood framing, add more steel and a metal deck, and pour a new level composite concrete slab for the second story.

BuildSense pursued a tight, well-insulated building envelope. For the roof, Lanou and Mehlman specified an insulated metal panel featuring a 6-inch urethane core that boasts an R-value of 42. “It’s also painted white, which significantly helps us reduce our cooling loads in the summer—the predominant loads in a commercial building in our climate,” Lanou explains. “It’s very well air-sealed, very well insulated and it’s reflective.” In addition, the roof cover, insulation and finished ceiling are provided in one component.

Roof Install

A crane was required to lift all panels to the roof from one side of the building because power lines impeded the other sides. “The crane would grab the bundle of panels, which were staged on the high side of the building, and lift them up and over the building to place them on the low side,” Miller says. “It would’ve been so much easier if we had access completely around the building but we had to have a big crane come out there and do that lift.”

The roof cover, insulation and finished ceiling are provided in one component. PHOTO: Barrett Hahn

The roof cover, insulation and finished ceiling are provided in one component. PHOTO: Barrett Hahn

Once the panels were on the building near where they would be installed, manlifts further assisted with situating the panels on the roof. “The larger panel sections were 400 pounds each and 42-inches wide,” Miller explains. “They were awkward to handle. You also had to make sure when you were moving them around on top of the steel trusses that you didn’t scratch the finished paint on the underside of the panels, which would serve as the second-floor ceiling.”

Miller says safety was the biggest challenge on the project. His crew was tied to steel beams or apparatus that bolts onto the standing seam once they were past the leading edge. “We also made sure no one got hurt while we were moving the 400-pound panels. You don’t want a 400-pound panel on one man and he’s trying to hold the thing up without his knowledge. Honestly, a 400-pound panel once it is in motion may end up being 2,000 pounds of live load so we had to work in unison. We had one crew leader who would call out the play, saying ‘1, 2, 3, we’re going down’ or ‘1, 2, 3, we’re moving the panel over’.”

The coordination among the crew helped because the panels weren’t packaged exactly as they would be installed on the roof. “Some of them were upside down and we had to rotate,” Miller notes. “Without a lift there fulltime, it would’ve been even more challenging. Plus, we were working about 35 feet above the ground and 15 feet above the concrete floor of the building. We had to stay safe, stay tied off.”

Once the lifting and maneuvering were handled, Miller says the installation, which took about a week, was similar to any standing-seam roof, except each panel is 8-inches tall. “The top of the lock must be engaged while the panel is rotated so the tongue at the bottom of the panel engages with the lock,” he says. “Once you are engaged at the top and bottom, then you manually seam the locks together at the top. When you’re all finished you take a massive power seamer and run down the seam and it locks that joint together, so you have all kinds of wind-uplift value.” [Read more…]