Indian River County Intergenerational Recreation Center was designed to be the hub of its community, a venue that hosts recreational and competitive sports and other activities, including educational, social and philanthropic events.
The new $10.4 million facility, branded by the county as the “iG Center” and often referred to as “Big Red,” consists of two adjoining main buildings: the two-story gymnasium and a long, single-story wing that houses various multi-purpose rooms, a concession area, a game room and a catering kitchen.
The site’s location near the oceanfront in Vero Beach, Florida, is susceptible to hurricanes and other extreme weather events, and making sure the complex would stand up to the elements was a key consideration for officials and residents in the county. This concern prompted a focus on the design of the building’s exterior envelope. In the end, a metal roof and metal wall panels were the key to meeting the building’s design goals.
When county officials spoke with the architects at Borrelli + Partners, they had a strict set of criteria in mind for the building, including the ability to withstand high wind speeds and 100-year rainstorms. “They mandated a sloped roofing system,” notes Dan-Michael Trbovich of Borrelli + Partners. “They wanted a minimum 20-year warranty, and they said they were looking for a ‘50-year roof.’ This affected the roof design and the wall design.”
A key goal of the team at Borrelli + Partners was to specify a watertight metal roof system that would also allow unlimited thermal movement to cope with extreme temperature fluctuations. They found what they were looking for in a standing seam metal roof and wall system manufactured by IMETCO.
The 37-acre site and open park setting also provided the opportunity to explore interesting aesthetic elements. The building would be highly visible, and goals included a dynamic exterior design that would allow the park and the building complement each other. In the end, the decision was made to go with bright red and white metal panels that would stand against the blue sky to create what Trbovich calls an “All-American design.”
In one of many daring design elements, sections of the red roof panels were folded over and brought down to the ground to serve as wall panels. A custom detail was devised to make the transition impervious to water penetration.
“Our criteria included a kneecap—a premanufactured fixture that would be put over the entire thing,” Trbovich says. “IMETCO was the only manufacturer we knew that offered that, and it was absolutely critical in the design.”
Areas in which the panels were turned over included the south-facing wall, which was no coincidence. “We wanted to make sure the south-facing wall didn’t get too much heat, so what you’re essentially doing is creating a vented roof decking system that protects the vertical surface on the south side,” notes Trbovich.
High summer temperatures and afternoon rains in Vero Beach can cause a lot of expansion and contraction, so HVAC and plumbing systems were rerouted to avoid the roof. “There is not a single roof penetration,” Trbovich says. “We wanted to make sure that roof would be able to move and slide. We wanted to make sure there were no contraction points that would hang it up, therefore we went with a design that would not allow roofing penetrations, whether it was a vent pipe, air duct or air-handling unit.”
Detailing was meticulous and consistent throughout, according to Trbovich. Flashing details were all designed to have a 6-inch overlap. “We went to extreme levels of detailing, whether it was in section cuts or in isometric cuts, to make sure that each and every one of those flashing details had that same 6-inch overlap. We required those be uniform across the facility on all corners, so that we essentially matched rake, eave jamb and corner flashing details.”
To ensure the details were correctly installed in the field, the architect and manufacturer worked closely during construction with the general contractor, KAST Construction, and the installer, Atlantic Roofing II of Vero Beach Inc.
Atlantic Roofing IIapplied the standing seam roof system and metal wall panels, as well as a small single-ply roof on a flat section near the entryway. IMETCO Series 300 panels in Cardinal Red were installed on both the roof and walls, while white IMETCO Latitude panels were also installed on the walls.
The metal roof system was installed over the structure’s metal deck. It included 3 inches of polyiso insulation, 5/8-inch DensDeck and Aqua-Block 50 peel and stick, high-temperature underlayment.
The absence of penetrations simplified the metal roof installation, notes Steven Cottrell, project manager and chief estimator for Atlantic Roofing II. “The panels were rolled right on the site, and the longest ones up there are 168 feet long,” he says.
The roll former was stationed on the ground, and panels were lifted to the roof with a special cradle. “IMETCO brought out the metal and provided the machinery to roll them out, and the panels were placed onto giant spacer bars and loaded onto the roof,” Cottrell explains. “It was a bit of a challenge. We had 20 men up on the roof unloading them.”
The flat roof sections connecting the two buildings and the entryway were covered with a Seaman FiberTite KEE membrane, which was fully adhered over 3 inches of polyiso, tapered insulation and 5/8-inch DensDeck.
The roof system features a large internal gutter, which was lined with the same FiberTite roof system. Metal panels drop into the gutter and pick up on the other side, so it was crucial to ensure the area would be watertight and the panels would line up perfectly. “We worked closely with the architect and manufacturer on that,” notes Cottrell. “We used their eave detail and high eave detail, and it worked very well.”
According to Cottrell, the roof and wall installations went smoothly and the roof is performing well — despite a hurricane and a 100-year rainstorm. “We’ve had no leaks, zero callbacks,” he says.
As the building was completed, Borrelli + Partners worked with the county to design the landscaping around the structure. “Our architects and interior designers work very closely with the landscape crew,” Trbovich notes. “We’re concerned about the physical space — external, internal, architectural and throughout. It’s a real holistic design approach, and you don’t see that with most architectural firms.”
The result is a project that Cottrell and Trbovich point to with pride. “It’s a unique structure,” says Cottrell. “It was a challenging project, but we rose to the challenge and banged it out. It’s like a little star for us on the fridge, if you know what I mean.”
For Trbovich, what stands out the most is the marriage of form and function in the many details. “While the building looks interesting with the awning and the striking form of the red standing seam roof, what’s crucially important is all the things we just talked about that are embedded in that design — the solutions themselves.”
Architect: Borrelli + Partners, Orlando, Florida, www.borrelliarchitects.com
General Contractor: KAST Construction, West Palm Beach, Florida, www.kastbuild.com
Roof System and Wall System Installer: Atlantic Roofing II of Vero Beach Inc., Vero Beach, Florida, www.atlanticroofing2.com
Metal Roof Panels: Series 300 in Cardinal Red, IMETCO, www.imetco.com
Metal Wall Panels: Series 300 in Cardinal Red and Latitude in White, IMETCO
Underlayment: Aqua-Block 50, IMETCO
Cover Board: 5/8-inch DensDeck Prime, Georgia-Pacific, www.densdeck.com
Single-Ply Membrane: 50-mil FiberTite XT KEE, Seaman Corporation, www.fibertite.com