Pulling Together

As we were wrapping up this issue, the country was going through a tumultuous election in the midst of a pandemic. Our November-December issue typically focuses on government and municipal projects, and as we compiled these stories spotlighting successful public projects it was hard not to reflect on the nation’s highly polarized political environment.

According to roof consultant John A. D’Annunzio, public projects are typically a solid and dependable sector of the roofing market, and he outlines tips for successfully bidding and executing public projects in this issue.

Want to make sure you get paid at the end of the job? Working for a government entity can mean that it’s impossible to file a lien or sue in civil court, so check out the article by David Keel and Richard Anderson of Cotney Construction Law, who detail ways contractors can protect themselves and make sure they are compensated when the work is done.

This issue profiles government and municipal projects of many different types, including low-slope and steep-slope work, both retrofit and new construction. Several of them involved complex roof replacements in facilities that were open throughout the duration of the project. In Baton Rouge, Louisiana, the roof on the 300,000-square-foot United States Post Office General Mail Facility was replaced with a modified bitumen system while mail processing at the facility continued 24-7. In Owatonna, Minnesota, restoring the city’s historic administration building included installing 29,000 square feet of synthetic slate — and a detailed safety plan to protect workers and members of the public.

In Sevierville, Tennessee, a community center’s roof was replaced with metal-over-metal retrofit, which cut costs and minimized safety concerns. During a new construction project nearby, a butterfly standing seam metal roof and metal wall panels were installed on Sevier County Utility District’s new multipurpose facility.

D’Annunzio, who has been a roof consultant for more than 30 years, begins every pre-construction meeting by saying, “Nobody wins unless everybody wins.” His point is that the fate of the general contractor, roofing contractor, architect, engineer and consultant are all intertwined. All of them will benefit if they work together and the project is successful. They will all suffer if the project fails and ends up in litigation.

“Nobody wins unless everybody wins.” Not a bad motto for running a roofing project. Not a bad motto for running a government, either.