Roof Re-Cover Meets Challenges of Historic Integrity

Austin Hall is a historic landmark on the campus of Sam Houston State University. It was first occupied in October 1851. Photos: McElroy Metal

Some roofers are simply cut out to do their thing in the spotlight. Empire Roofing of Austin, Texas, executed the removal of an existing leaking stainless-steel metal roof and the installation of McElroy Metal’s 238T symmetrical copper standing seam roofing system on a historic centerpiece building on the campus of Sam Houston State University.

Historic Austin Hall in Huntsville, Texas, was re-roofed less than 10 years ago. It’s the oldest building west of the Mississippi River to have been used continuously by an educational institution. Austin Hall was first occupied in October 1851 and completed the following year.

Unfortunately, it soon became evident that there were defects pertaining to the 2009-10 roof installation and it needed to be replaced. The stainless-steel interlocking panels were not seamed or soldered as specified and in accordance with historically accurate methods, resulting in widespread water infiltration beneath the metal roof assembly. Armko Industries of Austin was contracted to determine the best plan of action for resolving these issues and restoring the Austin Hall roof, internal gutters and cupola back to a watertight condition. During the evaluation, portions of the existing roof had to be removed to verify conditions. Sam Houston State and Armko requested Empire Roofing assist the evaluation.

At the base of the cupola, the specifications called for the installation of through-wall flashing using 20-ounce copper. Photos: McElroy Metal

“Based on my initial observations, I was hired to come in and actually remove and replace some of the roof near the cupola and internal gutters to assess and verify the exact nature of the perceived defects,” says Aaron Todd, who leads the metal roofing and sheet metal division at Empire Austin. “I hated to be the bearer of bad news, but it was a lot worse than they anticipated. The flat-seam panels were installed using a Pittsburgh seam, which really isn’t designed to be a watertight seam in a low-slope (2:12) roofing application. The underlayment that was installed did a better job of keeping out water than the flat-seamed panels.”

Working together, Empire and Armko put together a plan that required the removal of the stainless-steel flat-seamed panels and the internal gutter liner. The Texas Historical Commission was involved in the renovation to ensure the new roof would be as historically accurate as possible. Plans and specifications issued by Armko Industries were to remove the existing stainless steel and to re-roof with the 20-ounce copper 238T standing seam on all roof sections, interior gutters and related sheet metal components. Specifications and details issued siding removed at the cupola walls and a new liquid-applied waterproofing membrane was applied over the new sheathing, with new siding installed to match the original siding. At the base of the cupola, the specifications and details called for the installation of through-wall flashing using 20-ounce copper. Titanium PSU-30 high-temp self-adhering underlayment covered the roofing substrate and was used as a lining in the internal gutters, under the 20-ounce copper.

Empire Roofing removed the building’s existing roof and installed McElroy Metal’s 238T symmetrical copper standing seam roofing system the historic structure. Photos: McElroy Metal

“We set up scaffolding and worked on the octagonal cupola first,” Todd says. “The design incorporates a convex curvature with all roof sections meeting at the apex. Together with my superintendent, Diego Trevizo, and our lead foreman, Uri Contreras, we measured everything we needed for the cupola roof and gave the cut list to our shop fabricators, who produced the panels and trim for the cupola roofing, the design of which was proposed by Empire and approved by the Texas Historical Commission and Armko. We also had a 10-foot mechanical brake onsite to fabricate and modify any panels as needed during the installation process. My team and I love working with copper, because aside from the obvious qualities inherent in its chemical makeup, it allows for a more thorough arsenal of seaming and joining techniques due to its unique malleability relative to most other types of commonly used metal components.”

Todd says standing seams were incorporated at each hip of the cupola to avoid the need to solder vertical joints. At the apex of the cupola, standing seams were folded down and lapped under the finial skirt. The crew sealed/riveted/soldered the finial base to the copper panels to create a watertight and wind-resistant detail at this very exposed and relatively flat area.

Standing seams were incorporated at each hip of the cupola. At the apex of the cupola, the seams were folded down and lapped under the finial skirt. Photos: McElroy Metal

Empire Roofing owns roll formers with dies to produce McElroy’s 238T and 138T symmetrical standing seam panels. “Empire’s capabilities with regard to commercial, industrial, and historical roofing projects are far reaching, and we love a good challenge,” Todd says. “If you’ve got a difficult problem, it’s our job to solve it, and we love working with innovative manufacturers like McElroy in doing so.”

Symmetrical standing seam systems do not have male and female legs, but are comprised of panels with matching left and right legs. The panels are joined with a mechanically seamed cap. The panels are non-directional, meaning they can be installed left to right, right to left, or even from the center out. The seam design on a symmetrical panel is more watertight than a double lock because there is no interruption of sealant in the seam at the clip locations. Most importantly, a symmetrical panel can be easily replaced if there is ever damage or a reason to pull a panel out of the roof at a later date.

“Through a judicious use of hydrostatic details utilizing butyl tape in lieu of solder at key areas, we were able to achieve a long-term watertight and wind-resistant roof assembly that only minimally relies on soldered joints and that can accommodate thermal movement much better,” Todd says.

Photos: McElroy Metal

Austin Hall is located on a hill among old-growth trees, so there isn’t much room to park a roll former to produce panels up to 25 feet long. It’s a relatively small project, about 6,000 square feet. “We set up our staging area in the road, about a quarter-mile from Austin Hall,” Todd says. “To minimize disruptions to daily university activities, we decided to run panels in the evening and have 3-4 guys walk the longer panels up the hill, one at a time. We rented a golf cart to transport guys down the hill to the roll former and bring smaller items up to the jobsite. We’ve got a great crew and it was ‘all hands on deck’ for this one. In one night, we produced all the panels and telescoped them to the roof on our spreader bar, which we attached to the forks of our onsite SkyTrack. We didn’t damage a single panel … that’s tough to do with copper.”

Todd was sure the roofing details would be watertight and wanted to make sure the internal gutters didn’t cause any problems. The Empire crew used sandpaper to etch the flat 20-ounce copper before it was fabricated into gutters. Once fabricated and roof-loaded, the gutter pieces were joined in 40- to 50-foot sections in the interior gutter, then lifted out and placed on sawhorses. All joints and seams were fully soldered on the sawhorses and then placed in their respective areas inside the internal gutter troughs, where the few remaining seams were joined and soldered in place. The gutters then were coated with Kemperol 2K PUR, a solvent-free, fleece-reinforced and liquid-applied waterproofing system based in polyurethane resin. Empire used a roller to apply the coating in open areas and brushed on the coating in corners.

TEAM

Building Envelope Consultant: Armko Industries, Austin, Texas, www.armko.com

Roofing Contractor: Empire Roofing, Austin, Texas, www.empireroofing.com

MATERIALS

Metal Roof System: 238T symmetrical copper standing seam roofing system, McElroy Metal, www.mcelroymetal.com

Underlayment: Titanium PSU-30 high-temp self-adhering underlayment, InterWrap, www.interwrap.com

Liquid-Applied Waterproofing System: Kemperol 2K PUR, Kemper System, www.kemper-system.com

Symmetrical Standing Seam Roofing System Installed Without Interrupting Operations

Northwest Distributors was able to keep operations running without interruption while a new seam roofing system installed was installed a re-cover application. Photos: McElroy Metal

The versatility of a symmetrical standing seam metal roofing system has given birth to a new way of dealing with damaged metal roofing.

Northwest Distributors in Hays, Kansas, is a busy warehouse, dealing with auto parts and supplies. The R-panel roofing on the original building and an addition both sustained damage in several hailstorms over the years. After a 2017 hailstorm, the insurance company for Northwest Distributors agreed a new roof was needed and it would cover the damage.

The tried and true method of replacement involves complete roofing tear-off and replacement. Obviously, this would expose the valuable contents of the facility to the elements. Roofmasters Roofing & Sheet Metal of Hays proposed the patented 238T tall clip re-cover using the 238T symmetrical standing seam roofing system from McElroy Metal.

The roof re-cover would not require the removal of any existing roofing panels and therefore, would not interrupt any activity inside. It would be business-as-usual at Northwest Distributors during the install.

The owners at Northwest Distributors decided to go with the re-cover. Project manager Andrew Bizzell and project superintendent Andy Littrel headed up the assignment for Roofmasters.

“The tall clip re-cover cost is about the same as a removal, but the benefit comes from the contents of the building not being exposed to potential damage from rain or wind or hail,” says Bizzell. “Plus, they were able to keep working without interruption. That saved Northwest money as well.”

To eliminate the problem of standing water behind curbs above the skylights, transverse panels were installed above the skylights using floating purlins that lift the transverse panels and skylights above the field of the new roof. Photos: McElroy Metal

Panels for the 58,000-sqaure-foot re-cover were produced onsite and stacked on the roof. Roofmasters owns its own roll former that produces the 238T symmetrical standing seam panel. The 24-gauge panels are 24 inches wide with striations in PVDF Regal White. Panels were approximately 64 feet long.

“It really was a straightforward job,” Bizzell says. “We have installed several re-covers with the 238T. We like the ease of installation. It provides a great benefit to the building owner because if a panel is damaged, a single panel can be removed and replaced anywhere on the roof. If a panel is damaged with another type of standing seam system, you have to start on an end and remove all of the panels up to and including the damaged panel. Obviously, that is a much greater expense.”

Bizzell says not all insurance policies cover cosmetic damage sustained in weather events like hailstorms. The symmetrical standing seam system allows for the replacement of a single panel or only damaged panels the owner feels the need to replace, reducing his financial hit.

Roofmasters installed 3 1/2 inches of batt insulation between the original roof and the new panels to eliminate the possibility of condensation forming between the two metal systems. It also provided the owner with an added R-value of R-12, which will help reduce heating and cooling costs.

Photos: McElroy Metal

It should be noted the Northwest Distributors warehouse roof includes 36 skylights, a feature the owner wanted to keep. To eliminate the problem of standing water behind curbs above the skylights, Roofmasters installed transverse panels from the top of the skylight to the ridge. Transverse panels are installed perpendicular to the slope using floating purlins that lift the transverse panels and skylights above the field of the new roof. This system lifts the leak-prone skylights out of the water plane. None of the exposed fasteners used for this detail penetrate the roof.

Beneath the center of the transverse panels, a center support was installed. In addition to support, it adds a little pitch to the transverse panels to aid water flow.

Roofmasters installed a polycarbonate skylight panel from MWI Components over the original skylight hole.

“We use transverse panels with skylights and other roof penetrations,” Bizzell says. “We also use the traditional curb. Installed correctly, they both do what they’re supposed to do.”

McElroy Metal Publishing Blogs to Help Contractors, Consumers, Homeowners

McElroy Metal has developed three blogs to help educate contractors, consumers and homeowners on the benefits and frequently asked questions regarding metal roofing and wall products.

McElroy Metal’s Commercial Building blog features some of the many successful commercial projects completed with the company’s products. McElroy Metal’s Homeowner blog speaks to anyone looking for design inspiration and information about installing metal roofing on their home. It also offers information about the benefits of metal roofing. McElroy Metal’s News blog showcases the company’s new products as well as projects featuring McElroy products, including several award-winning projects.

“Our goal is to help our customers and consumers learn about metal roofing and walls,” said Ken Gieseke, Vice President of Marketing at McElroy Metal. “The three blogs contain information useful to contractors, consumers and homeowners, information that helps promote the use of metal roofing and walls and explains the benefits to consumers.”
All three blogs can be accessed from the Blog drop-down menu on the company’s home page, www.mcelroymetal.com.

McElroy Metal Publishes E-Book on Economic Benefits of Roof Recover With Metal

When a roof has to be replaced, McElroy Metal is poised to help building owners make the best decision with the company’s new E-book. This valuable reference identifies the many long-term and cost-effective benefits of installing a metal roof. The title of the E-book is Need a New Roof? How Building Owners Reduce Cost with a Metal Roof. McElroy Metal, a family-owned manufacturer of metal roofing and wall panels for a variety of markets, has developed two symmetrical standing seam metal roofing systems that are installed more quickly and provide a long-term, high-performance solution.

The E-book was developed to help building owners understand re-roofing options and present the features and benefits of Metal-Over-Metal and Metal-Over-Shingle Recover Systems. These two symmetrical standing seam metal roofing systems represent the optimal solutions with regard to both long-term performance and cost.

McElroy Metal’s E-book, Need a New Roof? How Building Owners Reduce Cost with A Metal Roof, can be downloaded at this link: https://info.mcelroymetal.com/building-owners-reduce-cost-with-a-metal-roof.

For more information, visit https://www.mcelroymetal.com.

Synthetic and Peel-and-Stick Underlayments for Metal Roofing

HydraShell MAX and HydraShell Supreme SA are McElroy Metal’s new underlayments. HydraShell MAX is the standard synthetic underlayment and HydraShell Supreme SA is a peel-and-stick underlayment. HydraShell MAX has a four-layer construction and can be used under all types of finished roofing materials, including steel roofing and is suitable for roof pitches as low as ½:12. HydraShell MAX requires significantly fewer fasteners than competitive products and provides a durable deck cover. HydraShell Supreme SA is the best choice in high-temperature, self-adhering applications. The SBS modified asphalt provides excellent pliability and the cool gray surface reduces heat build-up. 

For more information, visit www.mcelroymetal.com.

Meticulous Preparation Sets Up Restoration Project for Success

Photos: Debby Amador, Roma Police Department

Officials at Roma High School in Roma, Texas, knew they needed a new roof. The tile roof on the main complex was more than 25 years old, and some components were clearly failing. They didn’t realize that many of the leaks and resulting wall deterioration were caused by other problems as well. Luckily, they reached out to design and construction professionals who did their homework, diagnosed all of the key problems, and developed a plan to fix them. The crowning touch of the building envelope restoration plan was a beautiful standing seam metal roof, and the success of the project is proof that hard work pays off not only in the classroom, but on top of it.

The Consultant

As its building envelope consultant, Roma Independent School District chose Amtech Solutions Inc., headquartered in Dallas, Texas. The full-service architectural, engineering, and building envelope consulting firm has been in business since 1982. Working out of the company’s Rio Grand Valley (RGV) office located in Pharr, Texas, Amtech Solutions inspected and evaluated the entire site and reviewed legacy documents to identify the underlying issues.

They found quite a few, notes Michael Hovar, AIA, RRO, LEED AP, a senior architect and the general manager of the company’s RGV office. “They thought all they had was a roofing problem,” he notes. “But we saw right away that not properly managing water off the roof was the cause of wall deterioration, which then became leaks into the building. Our experience with the entire envelope and all facets of design and construction really helped us on this one.”

Roma High School in Roma, Texas, underwent a three-phase building envelope restoration plan in 2016-2017. After the walls were repaired and restored, the roof and mechanical equipemt were replaced. Photos: Debby Amador, Roma Police Department

Amtech Solutions put together a presentation for the school board to detail what they discovered and the plan they proposed to remedy the situation. The company also worked with the school district to help develop a budget.
The restoration plan was split up into three phases. The first phase focused on restoring the walls and windows. The second phase encompassed roof replacement and installing new mechanical equipment. The third phase involved improving drainage, grading and other site repairs.

Amtech Solutions decided not to bid the project out to a general contractor, but rather to bid each phase separately. “We decided to split it up into stages and do it logically, starting with the walls first,” Hovar says. “For the walls, we got restoration contractors who specialize in wall restoration work.”

Restoration Services Inc. (RSI) of Houston, Texas handled the first phase in the summer, as the wall repairs would be louder and more disruptive to students. The roof replacement project was scheduled for the fall. “Once all of the stuff on the ground was done, that allowed us to do the re-roofing work throughout the school year, which also helped the price,” notes Hovar. “Our experience has always been that if we have good cooperation with the contractors and the school staff, at the end of the job they end up being best friends. And that’s exactly what happened. At the end of the job, they were sad to see the roofers go.”

Amtech Solutions convinced the school district the plan would work. “It took some coordination, communication and cooperation, and it took a motivated owner that was willing to do this and trust us,” Hovar says. “They looked to us for guidance, and we said, ‘We do this all the time. We do roofing projects throughout the year, occupied and unoccupied, and we do it in a way that respects what the occupant’s needs are.’”

When it came time to specify the roof system, school board members were divided; one faction wanted to install a new tile roof, and the other wanted to go with metal. “The interesting thing is, for the historical architecture of the area, both of those roofs are appropriate, so from the standpoint of historical significance, either one works,” Hovar says. “In the end, it was quite a bit more expensive to utilize tile than it was to utilize a metal roof.”

The Roof Systems

The decision was made to go with a standing seam metal roof from McElroy Metal on the vast majority of the complex, including the main roof, the gymnasium, and two freestanding structures — the art and industrial arts buildings — that had been added over the years. The main tile roof was removed and replaced with McElroy’s 138T Panel, a 16-inch-wide, 24-gauge panel in Brite Red. McElroy’s 238T Panel, a 24-inch-wide, 24-gauge panel, was specified for the gym, as well as the art and industrial arts buildings. In a cost-saving measure, the color on the gym roof was changes to Galvalume Plus. In all, more than 233,000 square feet of metal roofing was installed.

Before

“The reason we picked this roof system is we’ve had a lot of great experience with it,” Hovar says. “We love that panel because they can actually bring the roll former to the jobsite. That gives the roofing contractor a lot more options on how he can load the roof and sequence the job. The other beauty of this panel is that it has unlimited movement. The panels itself slides back and forth over a fixed clip. It also flashes like a dream.”

Low-slope roof areas adjacent to the gym were replaced with a two-ply modified bitumen system from Siplast. CPI Daylighting manufactured a new skylight for the atrium.

As part of the roofing phase, gutters and downspouts were added. “There was nothing controlling the water before on this project,” Hovar says. “We designed a gutter system with expansion joints as per SMACNA guidelines. The contractor made absolutely beautiful shop-welded aluminum downspout boots.”

The most crucial detail was a custom-made saddle that solved the problem of water infiltration at the transition between the roof and walls on the wings. “This ultimately simple solution addressed one of the major design flaws that plagued the facility from the first days of occupancy,” Hovar notes. “We modeled the three-dimensional design of those saddles, and the contractor welded them in his shop. He fabricated them out of .080 aluminum and they were seamless. The restoration contractor had already installed all of the through-wall flashing, so all the roofer had to do was put counterflashing in and do his work around it. He was able to fly without being slowed down by a mason on the job.”

The Roofing Contractor

The roofing phase of the project was handled by Rio Roofing, headquartered in Harlingen, Texas. The company primarily installs low-slope and metal roofs, and its focus is on large commercial and institutional projects. ““We do nearly 90 percent public bonded work,” notes Hedley Hichens, vice president of Rio Roofing. “We found out that whether it’s a small job or a big job, the paperwork is still the same, so we try to make it worthwhile.”

The company worked on the Roma High School project for about a year, wrapping up the roofing phase of the project in November 2017.

After the structure’s main roof was removed, the tile was replaced with a standing seam metal roof featuring McElroy’s 138T Panel in Brite Red. Photos: Debby Amador, Roma Police Department

The decision was made to tackle the wings on the main roof first. “During the pre-con meetings, we met with the principal and the superintendent and asked, ‘Which wings are the worst?’” Hichens notes. “There was one wing that was the most problematic, so we started with that area first.”

Rio Roofing began by tearing off the existing tile roof. “There were about 1,925 squares of concrete tile we had to remove,” Hichens notes. “We had crews on the roof tearing off tile, crews on the ground palletizing the tile and storing it in the parking lot.”

As crew members removed the old tile and felt, others followed behind and installed polyisocyanurate insulation and Polystick MTS, a waterproofing underlayment designed for high-temperature applications. “We did 40 or 50 squares a day, moving down the wing,” Hichens says. “We dried in the whole school. Then we came back with the 138 panel.”

On top of the gym and other buildings that received the 238T panel, the existing metal roofs were left in place. “We put flute fill on top of the old panels. Then we screwed down 3/8-inch Securock, primed it and put the Polyglass underlayment down on top of that,” Hichens explains. “That 24-inch panel is a great panel to work with because every time you put one down, you’re 2 feet closer to finishing.”

Installing the New Roofs

The school’s main roof covers a central hub with eight wings coming off of its octagonal skylight. Where the wings tie together, access was limited.

“It was a tight squeeze,” Hichens says. “Getting in there and getting out was difficult. I think our fork lift only cleared one of the walkways by 2 or 3 inches. It’s a big campus, but the layout was difficult at the school.”

Once the wings were dried in, sheet metal crews installed the edge metal and 4,000 linear feet of gutters. They also started forming the panels.

Typically, Rio Roofing lifts the roll former to the roof edge, but it was difficult to get a large lift next to the building, so in this case the roll former was left on the ground. It was moved from wing to wing as the job progressed. “We used a New Tech roll former on this project,” Hichens says, “We would put the roll former parallel to each wing and store the panels on the ground in each area.”

Panels were hemmed and notched using a Swenson Snap Table Pro and lifted to the roof with a fork lift and a special cradle. Crews used a hand seamer to set temporary seams and followed up with a robotic seamer from D.I. Roof Seamers. “The panels are easy to install,” Hichens says. “You get about four guys 10 feet apart to engage the panels and clips and you just keep going. At the end of the day crews put the seam caps on.”

On the low-slope areas, Rio Roofing installed approximately 47,000 square feet of the Siplast two-ply SBS modified system, which was torched down over new lightweight concrete. “For their size, the low-slope areas had a ton of mechanical equipment and ductwork up there,” notes Hichens. “There were a lot of key details.”

Rio Roofing custom-manufactured numerous curbs and details, including the saddles over problem areas at the walls. “We have a full welding shop,” Hichens notes. “We have a full machine shop. We make all of our own curbs here, so there is no lead time for ordering curbs, and we are sure they’ll fit.”

Teamwork

Work on the project has now moved on to a fourth phase: installing translucent panels over the swimming pool. Hovar believes teamwork was the key to the project’s success. “We had such a good contracting team, we did good field work to begin with, and we had an understanding owner,” he says. “Designing it wasn’t easy, but thankfully our experience helped. We just had a really good team to execute it, all the way around. That’s what makes for a great, project, right? When everybody is invested in a good outcome, they always support everybody else.”

Communication was also essential, and Building Information Modeling (BIM) helped keep everyone on the same page. “We modeled the project on our BIM software, and it helped everyone understand the scope and challenges. The BIM model allowed the owner see exactly what the project would look like, and it helped the contractor understand the staging and logistical challenges before the project was bid,” Hovar says. “There were no surprises.”

TEAM

Architect and Consultant: Amtech Solutions Inc., Pharr, Texas, www.amtechsls.com
Roofing Contractor: Rio Roofing, Harlingen Texas
Wall Restoration Contractor: RSI-Restoration Services Inc., Houston, Texas, www.rsi-restorationservices.com

MATERIALS

Metal Roof System
Metal Panels: 138T panel (16 inches wide, 24 gauge) and 238T Panel (24 inches wide, 24 gauge), McElroy Metal, www.mcelroymetal.com
Underlayment: Polystick MTS, Polyglass, www.polyglass.us
Cover Board: Securock, USG, www.usg.com
Skylight: CPI Daylighting, www.cpidaylighting.com

Low-Slope Roof System
Modified Bitumen Membrane: Paradiene SBS, Siplast, www.siplast.com

McElroy Metal Opens New Manufacturing Facility in Missouri

To meet the needs of a growing customer base, McElroy Metal opened its 13th U.S. manufacturing facility in Diamond, Missouri, this summer. “I look forward to servicing customers from here,” said Billy Howell, operations manager at the new Diamond manufacturing facility. “McElroy Metal has had a service center in this location for more than a decade. We’ve cultivated an excellent customer base, so building a manufacturing facility was just a natural step to meeting the needs of that customer base.”

Diamond is located in the southwest corner of Missouri, near the borders of Oklahoma, Arkansas and Kansas, serving the four-state area. The new manufacturing facility provides products for the post-frame industry as well as the architectural and commercial construction markets. “Now we can better serve our customers with the capability to locally produce the quality products they’ve come to expect,” said Brian Eudy, McElroy manager at Diamond.

For more information, visit www.mcelroymetal.com.

McElroy Metal Offers Online AIA Course on Metal Roof Design

McElroy Metal is offering a continuing education course in metal roof design for architects at AECdaily.com. The course, “Metal Roof Design: Top 10 Problems and How to Solve Them,” is based on an article and seminar conducted for the Roof Consultants Institute by metal roofing industry experts Brian Gardner and Charlie Smith. The article can be accessed by members via this link.

Metal roofing is gaining in popularity in both commercial and residential markets due to its durability, low operational cost and sustainability. Owner expectations for this product family have increased as well and now include heightened aesthetics and long-term performance. While metal roofing systems are certainly up to these challenges, when they fail due to improper installation, the results are costly. Consequently, it’s imperative designers have full knowledge of metal roof design and detailing. The course covers 10 problems metal roof designers face and describes how these problems can be prevented through proper design.

For more information, visit http://www.mcelroymetal.com.

New Construction Project Tests Contractor’s Mettle

Photos: Lynn Cromer Photography, Ferris, Texas

Photos: Lynn Cromer Photography, Ferris, Texas

Independence High School in Frisco, Texas, was conceived as an impressive new construction project on a tight schedule. The standing seam metal roof of the building was a key component in the architectural planning, as it was designed to provide aesthetic appeal for the massive structure while minimizing the view of mechanical equipment for passers-by on the ground.

The roof also was comprised of several low-slope sections, which were covered with a modified bitumen system. Both the metal and modified systems contributed to the building’s energy efficiency, helping the project achieve LEED Silver status.

The roof systems were installed by the Duncanville, Texas, branch of Progressive Roofing Services. Randy Dickhaut, the company’s general manager, indicated the project was completed in approximately one year—an ambitious schedule for a job of this size. “It was a challenging new construction job,” he says. “There were a lot of logistics involved, but in general, the job went very well.

A Tale of Two Roofs

The first goal of the project was drying in the metal decking. A two-ply, hot–mopped modified bitumen system manufactured by Johns Manville was installed on 24 decks totaling approximately 195,000 square feet of low-slope roof area. The system was applied over two layers of 2 1/2-inch polyiso insulation and 1/2-inch JM Securock cover board. The system was topped with an Energy-Star rated cap sheet, DynaGlas FR CR.

Photos: Lynn Cromer Photography, Ferris, Texas

Photos: Lynn Cromer Photography, Ferris, Texas

In the nine sections where the 88,000 square feet of metal roofing was installed, two layers of 2 1/2-inch polyiso insulation were attached, along with plywood decking and self-adhering TAMKO TW Tile and Metal underlayment. The standing seam metal roof system was manufactured by McElroy Metal, and the company provided the manpower and equipment to roll form the panels on the job site. Roof panels were the company’s 22-gauge Maxima 216 panels in Weathered Galvalume. These panels were complemented by 24-gauge Flush panels on walls and soffits.

The roll former was mounted on a scissor-lift truck. The eaves of the building were approximately 36 feet off of the ground, so a sacrificial panel was used to create a bridging effect to help guide panels to the roof. “Basically, the roll former went right along with us,” Dickhaut recalls. “We would pull 30 or 40 squares of panels, then drop the machine and move to the next spot. We were able to roll the panels right off the machine and lay them in almost the exact spot they would be installed.”

Photos: Lynn Cromer Photography, Ferris, Texas

The length of some of the panels posed a challenge, and as many as 12 crew members were needed to guide them into place for installation. In the steep-slope sections, crew members had to be tied off 100 percent of the time, so retractable lanyards were used to help keep safety lines out of the way.

The roof was mechanically seamed using a self-propelled industrial roof seamer manufactured by D.I. Roof Seamers. “We call it walking the dog,” notes Dickhaut. “One man can operate the equipment, and he just walks it every inch of every seam.”

The metal roof was designed to hide the mechanical equipment for the building, and Progressive Roofing completed work on two deep mechanical wells before the HVAC equipment was installed. “In the wells, we used McElroy’s Flush panels for the vertical surfaces and transitioned to the metal roofing,” notes Dickhaut. “In the bottom of the mechanical wells, we installed the Johns Manville modified roof and flashed the curbs.”

Rising to the Challenge

Dickhaut points to a few challenges on the job, including the length of the panels and the weather. “Overall, the job went really well,” he says. “The architects did a great job on the design, and McElroy has really good details. It was a pretty straightforward process. There was a lot of wind and rain we had to cope with. When you have a 100-foot panel that you can’t kink or scratch, it can get kind of tricky. You just have to be very careful.”

Photos: Lynn Cromer Photography, Ferris, Texas

Photos: Lynn Cromer Photography, Ferris, Texas

The Texas weather made the schedule unpredictable. “We were on that job over a year, so we caught all four seasons,” he says. “Weather had a huge impact. We dealt with extreme heat, humidity, snow, ice, mud, monsoon-type rains. Texas throws anything and everything at you.”

Whatever the conditions, Progressive Roofing was ready. “We show up locked and loaded,” Dickhaut says. “We attack it. We have seasoned veteran roofers that lead the pack. On that particular project, we had an architect, roofing consultants, an owner’s rep, and a general contractor. We would also bring in the McElroy and JM reps periodically for consultation. It’s really a team effort.”

TEAM

Architect: Corgan Associates Inc., Dallas
General Contractor: Lee Lewis Construction Inc., Dallas
Roofing Contractor: Progressive Roofing Services Inc., Duncanville, Texas

Project Profiles: Hospitality & Entertainment

B.O.B., Grand Rapids, Mich.

Roof Materials

The double-sided green wall surrounds guests with nature and provides fresh ingredients for the food they enjoy.

The double-sided green wall surrounds guests with nature and provides fresh ingredients for the food they enjoy.

The B.O.B.’s 900-square-foot Sky Patio was completed in August 2015 when its signature green wall was installed. The distinctive double-sided green wall surrounds guests with nature and provides fresh ingredients for the food they enjoy.

“Our living wall on the Sky Patio is a vivid symbol of our commitment to sustainability and support of the local environments where our restaurants are located,” says Alice Jasper, director of sustainability, the Gilmore Collection. “It greens up the exterior and interior of the rooftop patio, contributing to the beautification of downtown, making the patio more inviting from the street below and enhancing the dining experience of our guests.”

The two-sided green wall totals 608 square feet. Three exterior sections (48 inches in height) are attached to the outside of the fencing that surrounds the patio. Facing out to the street, these sections frame the Sky Patio on three sides with flowering annuals and perennials. There are five interior sections (45 1/2 inches in height), three on the inside of the perimeter fence, two on the back wall of the building. In addition to flowers, the interior sections include vegetables and herbs used in the kitchen.

The two-sided green wall totals 608 square feet.

The two-sided green wall totals 608 square feet.

“Local sourcing of ingredients is one of our main sustainable hospitality practices,” says Barbie Smith, the Gilmore Collection’s gardener. “With the green wall at the B.O.B., we grow ingredients right near the tables where our guests dine. You cannot get more local than that.”

“What chef wouldn’t want a garden with fresh herbs and produce right in their restaurant? A green wall makes it practical,” adds Mick Rickerd, chef at Bobarino’s. “We utilize the herbs in all our everyday dishes and the vegetables, like Swiss chard and rainbow carrots, in daily features. Our mixology team incorporates fresh basil, mint, lemongrass and thyme into special summer cocktails.”

Green Wall Manufacturer: LiveWall

Roof Report

The B.O.B. is the Gilmore Collection’s most ambitious project, and it exemplifies the company’s commitment to sustainability. The B.O.B. is an acronym for Big Old Building; the 70,000-square-foot, 4-story, red brick building was constructed in 1903 as a grocery warehouse. It stood vacant for decades before the Gilmore Collection saved it from demolition and began its transformation into a landmark hospitality destination in downtown Grand Rapids. The B.O.B. offers multiple venues, including bars, restaurants, comedy and nightclubs, as well as the rooftop Sky Patio, which is accessible through Bobarino’s restaurant on the second floor.

Photos: LiveWall

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