Forecasters Predict Healthy Outlook for Construction Industry

After a strong 2015, there is a growing sense that the construction industry expansion will be more tempered over the next eighteen months. However, continued demand for hotels, office space, and amusement and recreation spaces will ensure continued growth in the overall construction spending market over this time period.
The American Institute of Architects’ (AIA) semi-annual Consensus Construction Forecast, a survey of the nation’s construction forecasters, is projecting that spending will increase less than six percent for 2016, with next year’s projection being an additional 5.6% gain.

INFOGRAPHIC: To see each of the panelist’s projections, click here.

“Healthy job growth, consumer confidence and low interest rates are several positive factors in the economy, which will allow some of the pent-up demand from the last downturn to go forward,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, PhD, hon. AIA. “But at the same time, the slowing in the overall economy could extend to the construction industry a bit – with the biggest drop off expected in the industrial facility sector over the next year and a half.”

Market Segment Consensus Growth Forecasts 2016 2017

Overall nonresidential building 5.8% 5.6%
Commercial / industrial 11.7% 6.5%
Hotels 17.9% 7.6%
Office space 14.7% 7.5%
Retail 7.4% 5.2%
Industrial facilities -2.1% 2.9%
Institutional 4.5% 5.8%
Amusement / recreation 10.0% 5.7%
Education 6.5% 6.3%
Healthcare facilities 2.3% 5.0%
Religious -0.4% 1.9%
Public safety -3.7% 3.3%

Baker added, “The issues that could derail continued expansion in the construction sector include: weak U.S. manufacturing output, struggling economies in key international markets, the ripple effect from the Brexit decision, and the typical uncertainty leading up to a U.S. presidential election that results in reluctant investors.”

Project Profiles: Retail

Sierra Nevada Brewery, Mills River, N.C.

About 58,000 pounds of copper were installed on the brewery.

About 58,000 pounds of copper were installed on the brewery.

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: The Century Slate Roofing Co., Durham, N.C.
Architect: Matthew Galloway of Russell Gallaway Associates Inc., Chico, Calif.

ROOF MATERIALS

Approximately 423 squares of 1/2-inch-thick, 18-inch-tall by random width Unfading Green Slates were installed by hand on the project. This was close to 750,000 pounds of slate, or 375 tons.

About 3,000 feet of custom copper gutters and downspouts, conductor heads and 100 squares of painted standing-seam panels were fabricated, and pre-built copper clad dormers and decorative copper cornices were installed.

The project also included 35 squares of copper standing-seam roofing, 25 squares of soldered copper flat-seam roofing and 115 squares of copper wall cladding. About 58,000 pounds of copper were installed on the brewery.

Everything on the building is oversized and that meant everything had to be built to support the heavy structural loads and live loads from wind and mountain snow. The large roof faces called for 10-inch custom copper gutters. When you have gutters that large in the mountains of North Carolina you have to consider the extraordinary weight of the annual snow.

In addition to snow guards being installed on the slate roof, custom 1/4-inch-thick copper gutter brackets fastened the gutter to the fascia. It is typical on steel-framed construction, particularly on this scale, that the framing is out of square and there is widely varying fascia and rake dimensions.

Approximately 423 squares of 1/2-inch-thick, 18-inch-tall by random width Unfading Green Slates were installed by hand on the project.

Approximately 423 squares of 1/2-inch-thick, 18-inch-tall by random width Unfading Green Slates were installed by hand on the project.

However, these items should not appear out of square or have varying dimensions. Great care had to be taken to measure and custom bend onsite all the detail flashings so everything appeared perfect. This took many skilled craftsmen, a great deal of time and the absolute drive to provide the highest quality work.

Slate Manufacturer: Evergreen Slate Co. Inc.
Copper Fabricator: K&M Sheet Metal LLC
Supplier of Underlayment, Copper Sheets and Coil, Insulation and Nailbase Sheathing: ABC Supply Co. Inc.

ROOF REPORT

The new-construction project began in November 2013 and was completed in September 2015.
The team completed the slate installation so well that The Century Slate Co. was awarded the 2015 Excellence in Craftsmanship Award by Evergreen Slate for the project.

PHOTOS: The Century Slate Roofing Co.

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Project Profiles: Retail/Mixed-use

Outlet Collection at Niagara Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada

Team

DEVELOPER: Ivanhoé Cambridge, Montreal

The largest open-air outlet mall in Canada features approximately 23,000 square feet of PTFE fiberglass membrane walkway canopies.

The largest open-air outlet mall in Canada features approximately 23,000 square feet of PTFE fiberglass membrane walkway canopies. PHOTO: Birdair

Roof Materials

The largest open-air outlet mall in Canada features approximately 23,000 square feet of PTFE fiberglass membrane walkway canopies. The membrane canopies exhibit a flying-mast cone design that provides relief from the elements and creates a signature look for the shopping center.

PTFE, or polytetrafluoroethylene, is a Teflon-coated woven fiberglass membrane that is durable and weather-resistant. PTFE fiberglass membranes can be installed in climates ranging from the frigid arctic to the scorching desert heat with a project life in some cases exceeding 30 years.

PTFE fiberglass coating is chemically inert, and the low-surface free energy of the material results in an electrical-grade fabric membrane that is readily rinsed by rain-water. It is also immune to UV radiation. This combination makes PTFE-coated fabric membrane ideal for projects requiring weather endurance and fire resistance.

PTFE fiberglass is ENERGY STAR- and Cool Roof Rating Council-certified. During scientific tests of its solar properties, it was discovered that PTFE fiberglass membranes reflect as much as 73 percent of the sun’s energy while holding just 7 percent on its exterior surface. Certain grades of PTFE fiberglass can absorb 14 percent of the sun’s energy while allowing 13 percent of natural daylight and 7 percent of reradiated energy (solar heat) to transmit through.

PTFE FIBERGLASS MEMBRANE DESIGNER, FABRICATOR, INSTALLER: Birdair

Roof Report

Located beside the Queen Elizabeth II Highway, less than 20 kilometers from the U.S. border, the 520,000-square-foot shopping center features 102 retailers, including Canada’s first Pandora outlet, White House Black Market outlet and Bass Pro Shops Outpost. Other sought-after brands at the center include a Kate Spade Outlet, NIKE Factory Store, Calvin Klein Outlet and Michael Kors Outlet.

The Niagara Outlet Collection was developed to attract shoppers and visitors who might have otherwise crossed the U.S. border to shop in the Fashion Outlets of Niagara Falls, the Walden Galleria or the Boulevard Mall. David Baffa, Ivanhoé Cambridge senior vice president of retail development, said the developer wants the new outlet collection to be part of the Niagara experience.

Outlet Collection at Niagara is committed to corporate responsibility and environmental sustainability and has a number of design features throughout the property to raise awareness of its green initiatives. Its canopies make the open-air concept possible, reducing energy consumption because the common areas do not need to be heated or cooled. Some of the public buildings, like guest services and the eatery, have been designed so that they can be opened to the outdoors in favorable weather, thus saving energy and connecting people to the outdoors.

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The BTI-Greensburg John Deere Dealership Installs Tornado-Resistant Daylighting Systems and Other Sustainable Materials

On the night of May 4, 2007, brothers Kelly and Mike Estes saw their BTI-Greensburg John Deere Dealership obliterated by an EF5 tornado nearly 2-miles wide (according to the Enhanced Fujita Scale, which rates the strength of tornados by the damage caused; view the scale on page 3). Astoundingly, 95 percent of their town—Greensburg, Kan.—was also destroyed that day. The tornado did much more than rip roofs off buildings and toss things around; it turned the entire community into what looked like kindling.

Rarely do communities get hit by an EF5 tornado, which can come about when air masses collide. Sometimes warm, humid air from the Gulf of Mexico rises above drier air from the Southwest deserts in the U.S. This can create unstable conditions resulting in thunderstorms and worse. A strong collision of air masses creates a strong storm. Additionally, wind patterns and the jet stream can magnify the storm, resulting in what people refer to as “the perfect storm”.

After being completely destroyed by an EF5 tornado, the BTI-Greensburg John Deere Dealership has been rebuilt in Greensburg, Kan., in a better, greener way.

After being completely destroyed by an EF5 tornado, the BTI-Greensburg John Deere Dealership has been rebuilt in Greensburg, Kan., in a better, greener way.

Despite the large-scale losses incurred by the entire town, 100 customers and friends of the Estes family showed up the morning of May 5 to help them salvage what remained of their business. Shortly after the tornado disaster, Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius stated her wish that Greensburg become the “the greenest city in the state”.

As part of their commitment to their community, Kelly, Mike and their family decided to rebuild their business in a better, greener way. They wanted the new 28,000-square-foot prefabricated metal building to be the world’s greenest farm-machinery facility; attain a LEED Platinum rating from the Washington, D.C.-based U.S. Green Building Council; and use the least energy possible. One of the most important considerations was using building materials that could withstand future tornados.

DAYLIGHTING

To help achieve LEED Platinum and outlast any future high-velocity winds, they incorporated 12 Daylighting Systems in their retail area’s roof to showcase their merchandise; reduce lighting energy costs; and flood the area with natural light, a benefit for customers and employees.

The Daylighting Systems capture light through a dome on the roof and channel it down through a highly reflective tube. This tubing is more efficient than a traditional drywall skylight shaft, which can lose over half of the potential light. The tubing fits between rafters and installs with no structural modification. At the ceiling level, a diffuser that resembles a recessed light fixture spreads the light evenly throughout the room.

The dome is made from high-quality acrylic resin that is specifically formulated for increased impact strength, chemical- and weather-resistance, and high clarity (a polycarbonate inner dome is used for high-velocity hurricane zones). Domes are engineered to deflect midday heat and maximize low-angle light capture. The tubing is made from puncture-proof aluminum sheet coated with the highly reflective material for maximum light transfer. The units (independently tested by Architectural Testing in Fresno, Calif.) comply with various building codes including the 2009 International Building Code and 2010 Florida Building Code, including high-velocity hurricane zones.

“When our power went out one time for four hours, we were able to keep the shop open and operating due to daylight strategies, which includes the Daylighting Systems,” notes Mike Estes. “We didn’t anticipate this benefit but we’re really happy to have this bonus.”
PHOTO: SOLATUBE INTERNATIONAL INC.

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NCI Metal Depots Opens Raleigh, N.C., Location, Grand Opening Wednesday, Feb. 12

NCI Metal Depots, a national network of retail outlets providing metal buildings and roofing to everyone from homeowners to contractors, recently opened a store in Raleigh, N.C., at 5115 New Bern Ave.

Metal Depots offers a wide range of products ideally suited for residential, commercial and agricultural applications. The showroom offers consumers an opportunity to browse its many offerings as well as work in the design center to create the perfect roof for their home or a new building for their property.

Chris Pettis, vice president of Metal Depots, says, “Raleigh was the perfect site for us to open a new store. The market is here, and the people that we’ve worked with thus far have been fantastic, which gives us a positive outlook. We’re really looking forward to providing a unique shopping and buying experience for our customers, something that is not typical in our industry.”

Metal Depots is currently open to the public and will be having its Grand Opening on Wednesday, Feb. 12. Stop by during the hours of noon to 2 p.m. EST for a chance to win some great prizes.

NCI Metal Depots is an NCI Group Inc. company, which has headquarters in Houston. With 37 manufacturing facilities located throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico, NCI is one of the largest designers, manufacturers and vendors of metal coatings, components and buildings in North America.