Planning and Teamwork Are Essential in Tackling Retail Project


Planning and Teamwork Are Essential in Tackling Retail Project

Peach State installed a mechanically attached TPO system over the existing modified bitumen roof system on two buildings totaling approximately 75,400 square feet.

Peach State installed a mechanically attached TPO system over the existing modified bitumen roof system on two buildings totaling approximately 75,400 square feet.

Headquartered in Atlanta, Peach State Roofing Inc. has 15 branches and covers clients across the nation. The company specializes in commercial and industrial roofing, and excels at large-scale single-ply jobs. The goal of every branch is to provide the same level of service for clients no matter where they are in the country, as exemplified by a recent project at a large retail mall in South Carolina.

Peach State’s Charlotte branch is located in Rock Hill, S.C. The company has re-roofed three of the five roofs at Gaffney Premium Outlets in Gaffney, S.C., including two roofs completed this year in just two weeks. Anthony Wilkerson, the branch manager, and Blake Wideman, strategic accounts, shared their insights on the project.

Peach State’s Charlotte branch focuses primarily on re-roofing, service and maintenance work for existing customers and property managers. Most of the company’s work involves TPO, EPDM and PVC, but crews have to be able to handle almost every type of system on the market. “If there is a hotel with some shingles or metal on it, we want to be able to complete every facet of the job, but most of our work revolves around single-ply roofing,” Wilkerson states. “We are certified with every major single-ply manufacturer.”

Anthony Wilkerson (left) and Blake Wideman of Peach State Roofing’s Charlotte branch inspect the completed project at Premium Outlets in Gaffney, S.C.

Anthony Wilkerson (left) and Blake Wideman of Peach State Roofing’s Charlotte branch inspect the completed project at Premium Outlets in Gaffney, S.C.

According to Wilkerson and Wideman, Peach State’s strength lies in building relationships with its clients by providing quality workmanship and excellent customer service. “We do that through our project management, our expertise and our training,” says Wilkerson. “We put a lot into training our employees so that they know how to do the technical details that the manufacturers are asking for.”

Wilkerson believes Peach State offers the best of both worlds—flexibility at each branch and the depth of knowledge from the large corporate organization. “We’re independent, but I work with the corporate office every day,” says Wilkerson. “We have local representation around the country, but at the same time we have that teamwork, so you’re still getting the same quality from each office that you’re getting from the corporate office. We try to be as close to the way Atlanta does things—the Peach State Way—all across board, all over the country.”

Landing a Big One

In the case of the recent project at Gaffney Premium Outlets, the work was an outgrowth of the company’s previous successful projects, including a re-roofing job at the same complex last year. “Our bid was what they were looking for,” Wideman says. “We gave them the price they were looking for and the quality they wanted. That’s how we were awarded this project.”

This aerial view shows the five buildings of the Gaffney Premium Outlets mall. Peach State Roofing re-roofed the two buildings on the left this year, after completing work on the building at the far right last year.

This aerial view shows the five buildings of the Gaffney Premium Outlets mall. Peach State Roofing re-roofed the two buildings on the left this year, after completing work on the building at the far right last year.

The mall is made up of five buildings, and the company re-roofed two this year totaling approximately 75,400 square feet. Peach State installed a mechanically attached TPO system from Firestone over the existing modified bitumen roof system. “We came up with a plan to cover the old roof with a half-inch high-density cover board,” Wilkerson says. “Then we mechanically attached a Firestone 60-mil white TPO system over the cover board.”

The system was chosen for its durability, according to Wilkerson. “They were looking for a long-term solution,” he says. “We went with a re-cover because it was more cost-effective for their budget, but we could still offer them the same warranty and the same guarantee that the system would be just as effective if they had torn the old system off and started from scratch.”

The company used 8-foot rolls of TPO on the project for several reasons. “We went with 8-foot rolls on this project because it was easier to apply the rolls,” notes Wilkerson. “They are not as heavy as the 10-foot rolls. It’s easier to let the rolls relax when you roll them out and easier to keep them tight when you are securing them to the deck.”

Fasteners were installed every 12 inches on center at the edge of the TPO sheets, and the next sheet was heat welded over the top of the screws and plates, and then mechanically fastened at the other end.
Extra care had to be taken with the details, especially walls and curbs. “We tore all of the old membrane off the curbs and off the walls, and we used bonding adhesive to go up the walls,” Wilkerson explains.

At the walls, the field sheets were run up the wall 12 inches and mechanically attached. “We adhere a sheet to the wall, and we heat weld that to the field sheet,” explains Wilkerson, “At the top of that, we use a water cutoff behind the sheet, and we use a termination bar. The termination bar is installed 12 inches on center, and then we use a sealant at the top of the termination bar. We came back with a surface-mount counterflashing, which basically just goes over the top of the termination bar. It has a little kick-out on it, so once that’s attached, it gives you double protection where your membrane is terminated.”

Curbs were handled in a similar fashion. “With the curbs, you run the field sheet right up to the curb, and then you mechanically attach it 12 inches on center,” Wilkerson notes. “Then we use bonding adhesive to install a piece of membrane on each side of the curb. We don’t do one piece and wrap it all the way around. We use four separate pieces, and we adhere them to the curb. Then we heat weld those pieces to the field sheet. For the curbs, we use a flashing that goes underneath the curb itself, and we attach that 12 inches on center all the way around. That lets the water shed over the HVAC unit and then down onto the membrane past the flashing, so there’s nowhere for the water to penetrate.”

Meeting the Challenges

The sheer size of the project was a challenge, but Peach State is used to handling large-scale projects. Logistics and scheduling were also demanding due to customer activity at the mall. “It was a good project for us, but I’d say one of the biggest challenges was that the mall remained open the whole time we were doing the roof,” Wilkerson says. “We had to check in with each tenant in every building to make sure everything was OK from the night before.”

Extra care had to be taken with the details at walls and curbs. Bonding adhesive was used to install a piece of membrane on each side of the curb. Then those pieces were heat welded to the field sheet.

Extra care had to be taken with the details at walls and curbs. Bonding adhesive was used to install a piece of membrane on each side of the curb. Then those pieces were heat welded to the field sheet.

The project called for roofing specific sections each day to make sure the roof stayed watertight at all times. “We sealed the roof up every night 100 percent, so if it rained in the evening, it had to be like we had never been up there,” Wilkerson recalls. “If we took three air conditioners apart in a section that we did one day, at night before those guys went home the air conditioners were wrapped back up, the flashing was put back around the air conditioner and all of the edges of the roof were sealed to the old roof so everything was watertight.”

Safety was also a concern, especially with pedestrian traffic below. “We had to make sure all of our safety procedures were in place for our crews and for the members of the public going in and out of the doors,” Wilkerson says.

The crews used safety lines at the perimeter, and anyone outside the safety lines had to be tied off at all times. “We had to make sure we had a man strictly watching out for the safety of the crews. You have to make sure any little pieces of membrane don’t blow off the roof. You have to make sure all of that is being cleaned up steadily as the job is going on. You don’t want the public to see anything except the flag stands on the roof.”

Staging was complicated, but luckily the jobsite offered ample space for trucks and cranes to be moved between the buildings. The key was to tackle high-traffic areas early in the morning and move to less busy spots as the day wore on.

Proper staging is crucial to jobsite efficiency, notes Wilkerson. “We like to stage the material as we put it on so we’re not dragging it across the roof,” he says. “It’s all right there for them, laid out as they go.”

Support and teamwork are essential up and down the line. “We work really well as a team, so if anyone has any small questions, they can ask the superintendent and call me, so we can make sure we take care of it the Peach State Way.”

Flexing Their Muscles

The project went off without a hitch, says Wilkerson. The mall traffic was never disrupted. “Not one leak, not one complaint on this project,” he says. “Our project management on this project was spot on. Our superintendents held their own out there. And our guys—it’s the attention to quality and all the time we put into training our guys that allows them to do this and make it look almost seamless. It’s one of those situations where you want it to look easy while you’re doing it, but when you’re in the mix of it and you’re trying to get it all done, it’s not as easy as it looks.”

Customer service was crucial. It wasn’t just the property management company that had to be kept informed—it was each individual retailer in the building. “There were so many people to deal with,” notes Wideman. “Every manager of each of those units had to be kept informed of the process. Roofing is not as hard as people think, but keeping up with the owners, keeping people happy, letting people know ahead of time what’s going on is a big challenge. We had to make friends with everyone ahead of time and let them know where to call with any questions.”

“The project, as far as roofing goes, was pretty straightforward,” concludes Wilkerson. “The key is to keep up with everyone on a daily basis and let them know what’s going on so if there is a small problem, it doesn’t keep brewing until it’s a big problem.”

Photos: Peach State Roofing Inc.

(Why?)

Published at Thu, 27 Jul 2017 13:00:09 +0000


Definition of Resilience: Hospital Provides a Lesson in Preparing for Weather Events


Definition of Resilience: Hospital Provides a Lesson in Preparing for Weather Events

Staten Island University Hospital escaped major damage during Hurricane Sandy. The city of New York allocated $28 million to fund the hospital’s resiliency plan, and the state contributed an additional $12 million.

Staten Island University Hospital escaped major damage during Hurricane Sandy. The city of New York allocated $28 million to fund the hospital’s resiliency plan, and the state contributed an additional $12 million.

Almost five years ago, Hurricane Sandy bore down on New York City with winds that reached gusts of 100 miles an hour and a storm surge 16 feet above normal that flooded huge parts of the city. Entire neighborhoods lost electricity for several days, the Stock Exchange closed during and immediately after the storm, and scuba divers were called in to assess damage in parts of the city’s submerged subway system.

Staten Island, one of New York’s five boroughs, was heavily damaged. Its position in New York Harbor, at the intersection of the coastlines of Long Island and New Jersey, leaves the island particularly exposed to storm surge during extreme weather events. A geologist from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts described Staten Island as being, “at the end of, basically, a big funnel between New Jersey and New York.”

Staten Island University Hospital almost miraculously escaped major damage, despite flood waters coming within inches of it doors. The hospital stayed open during and after Hurricane Sandy, continuing to provide vital services despite the storm. The hospital is home to the largest emergency room on Staten Island, and houses more than one third of the borough’s in-patient beds. New York Mayor DeBlasio has called the hospital, “a truly decisive healthcare facility—even more so in times of crisis.”

While both hospital and city officials were relieved that the facility had escaped Sandy largely unharmed, the lesson that Sandy delivered was taken to heart: major mitigation efforts were needed if the hospital expected to survive similar storms in the future. With this in mind, the city of New York allocated $28 million to fund the hospital’s resiliency plan, with the state kicking in an additional $12 million.

The money is being spent on three major projects to better prepare the hospital for future storms: the elevation of critical building power and mechanical systems, the installation of sanitary holding tanks and backflow prevention, and the installation of major wind resiliency and roofing improvements. 

Resilient Design

The Staten Island experience, and the plan to upgrade its ability to withstand major weather events, is hardly unique. Nationwide, resilient design has become a major focus of the construction community.

Hurricane Sandy certainly intensified the sense of urgency surrounding the need for resilience. But well before that, Hurricane Katrina, in 2005, provided a tragic case study on the fragility of seemingly stable structures, as the storm brought a small, poor southern city to the brink of chaos and devastated entire neighborhoods. While these two hurricanes drew national and international attention, communities throughout the country have also been dealing with frequent, erratic and intense weather events that disrupted daily life, resulting in economic losses and, all too often, the loss of human life. These emergencies may include catastrophic natural disasters, such as hurricanes, earthquakes, sinkholes, fires, floods, tornadoes, hailstorms, and volcanic activity. They also refer to man-made events such as acts of terrorism, release of radioactive materials or other toxic waste, wildfires and hazardous material spills.

The focus, to a certain degree, is on upgrading structures that have been damaged in natural disasters. But even more, architects and building owners are focusing on building resilience into the fabric of a structure to mitigate the impact of future devastating weather events. And, as with the Staten Island Hospital, the roof is getting new attention as an important component of a truly resilient structure.

The resilience of the roofing system is a critical component in helping a building withstand a storm and rebound quickly. In addition, a robust roofing system can help maintain a habitable temperature in a building in case of loss of power. Photo: Hutchinson Design Group.

The resilience of the roofing system is a critical component in helping a building withstand a storm and rebound quickly. In addition, a robust roofing system can help maintain a habitable temperature in a building in case of loss of power. Photo: Hutchinson Design Group.

So, what is resilience, how is it defined, and why is it important to buildings in differing climates facing unique weather events? The Department of Homeland Security defines resilience as “the ability to adapt to changing conditions and withstand and rapidly recover from disruption due to emergencies.” The key words here are “adapt” and “rapidly recover.” In other words, resilience is measured in a structure’s ability to quickly return to normal after a damaging event. And the resilience of the roofing system, an essential element in protecting the integrity of a building, is a critical component in rebounding quickly. In addition, a robust roofing system can provide a critical evacuation path in an emergency, and can help maintain a habitable temperature in a building in case of loss of power.

According to a Resilience Task Force convened by the EPDM Roofing Association (ERA), two factors determine the resiliency of a roofing system: durable components and a robust design. Durable components are characterized by:
Outstanding weathering characteristics in all climates (UV resistance, and the ability to withstand extreme heat and cold).

  • Ease of maintenance and repair.
  • Excellent impact resistance.
  • Ability to withstand moderate movement cycles without fatigue.
  • Good fire resistance (low combustibility) and basic chemical resistance.
  • A robust design that will enhance the resiliency of a roofing system should incorporate:

  • Redundancy in the form of a backup system and/or waterproofing layer.
  • The ability to resist extreme weather events, climate change or change in building use.
  • Excellent wind uplift resistance, but most importantly multiple cycling to the limits of its adhesion.
  • Easily repaired with common tools and readily accessible materials.
  • More Information on Resilient Roofing

    The Resilience Task Force, working with the ERA staff, is also responding to the heightened interest in and concern over the resilience of the built environment by launching EpdmTheResilientRoof.org. The new website adds context to the information about EPDM products by providing a clearinghouse of sources about resilience, as well as an up-to-date roster of recent articles, blog posts, statements of professional organizations and other pertinent information about resilience.

    “This new website takes our commitment to the construction industry and to our customers to a new level. Our mission is to provide up-to-date science-based information about our products. Resilience is an emerging need, and we want to be the go-to source for architects, specifiers, building owners and contractors who want to ensure that their construction can withstand extreme events,” said Mike DuCharme, Chairman of ERA.

    EPDM roofs can be easily repaired and restored without the use of sophisticated, complicated equipment. Photo: Hutchinson Design Group.

    EPDM roofs can be easily repaired and restored without the use of sophisticated, complicated equipment. Photo: Hutchinson Design Group.

    EPDM and Resiliency

    The Resilience Task Force also conducted extensive fact finding to itemize the specific attributes of EPDM membrane that make it a uniquely valuable component of a resilient of a roofing system:

  • EPDM is a thermoset material with an inherit ability to recover and return to its original shape and performance after a severe weather event.
  • EPDM has been used in numerous projects in various geographic areas from the hottest climate in the Middle East to the freezing temperatures in Antarctica and Siberia.
  • After decades of exposures to extreme environmental conditions, EPDM membrane continues to exhibit a great ability to retain the physical properties and performances of ASTM specification standards.
  • EPDM is the only commercially available membrane that performs in an unreinforced state, making it very forgiving to large amounts of movement without damage and potentially more cycles before fatiguing.
  • EPDM offers excellent impact resistance to hail, particularly when aged.
  • EPDM is resistant to extreme UV exposure and heat.
  • EPDM far exceeded the test protocol ASTM D573 which requires materials to pass four weeks at 240 degrees Fahrenheit. EPDM black or white membranes passed 68 weeks at these high temperatures.
  • Exposed EPDM roof systems have been in service now for 50-plus years with little or no surface degradation.
  • EPDM is versatile.
  • EPDM can be configured in many roofing assemblies, including below-grade and between-slab applications.
  • EPDM is compatible with a broad range of construction materials/interfaces/conditions, making it a good choice for areas that may encounter unique challenges.
  • EPDM can be exposed to moisture and intense sunlight or totally immersed in salty water.
  • EPDM can easily be installed, repaired and restored following simple procedures without the use of sophisticated, complicated equipment.
  • EPDM can be repaired during power outages.
  • For further information about the need for resilience, and the appropriate use of EPDM in resilient structures, visit EPDMTheResilientRoof.com.

    (Why?)

    Published at Thu, 27 Jul 2017 14:00:21 +0000


    Re-Roofing of Shopping Center Covers Over 75,000 Square Feet


    Re-Roofing of Shopping Center Covers Over 75,000 Square Feet

    Southgate Shopping Center: Sebring, Florida

    Roofing contractors often find themselves tackling re-roofs at shopping centers in piece-meal fashion, doing sections over the years as the budget allows. When property manager Southern Management and Development decided to remodel the entire Southgate Shopping Center in Sebring, Fla., in conjunction with Publix Markets’ replacement of their existing store at the location, they looked to Advanced Roofing to get the job done.

    The scope of work included re-roofing three large sections of the retail plaza and a drugstore on the property. The roofing portions totaled 79,556 square feet.

    Roof System

    The roof specified was a two-ply modified bitumen system from Johns Manville. In the three large sections of the plaza, the existing built-up roof was completely torn off, while the drugstore was a re-cover project, notes Andrew Vik, estimator and project manager with Advanced Roofing’s Tampa branch, which operates under branch manager Michael Landolfi.

    Roofing work started in November 2016 and was completed in February 2017. After the existing roof was removed, crews installed 2-inch polyiso to the steel deck. “We mechanically fastened that with a half-inch USG SecuRock cover board through the steel deck,” notes Vik. “The two plies of modified bitumen were then torch applied, a smooth base sheet and a white granulated cap sheet.”

    On the drugstore, the roof was vacuumed, and the cover board and two plies were installed over the top of the old roof system.

    In addition to the roofing scope, Advanced Roofing’s HVAC division installed and removed heating and air conditioning units and replaced some obstructive ductwork. “We had our own HVAC people working with our roofing crews, so it was easy to coordinate everything,” notes Vik. “We had HVAC installations on three of the buildings, and we remounted existing units on two of the buildings. There was also a lot of demolition on the south building, as there were several derelict units that
    had been sitting there for quite some time. Those had to be hoisted off there and taken out.”

    A Challenging Project

    Logistics are often a challenge with a shopping center that remains open to the public, notes Vik. “You have to load and unload multiple levels of the roof at different times,” he says. “Customer relations is also a challenge; you have to keep everyone happy and ask a lot of questions. The construction manager has to do a lot of P.R. when he’s there.”

    Demolition portions of the project were done at night and application during the day, so business at the mall was never disrupted. Traffic in the parking area was also a key concern.

    “Setup areas had to be barricaded and marked off while we were loading and unloading,” Vik says. “There was even a drive under bridge connecting two buildings that had to be re-roofed, so we always had to be mindful of people below.”

    Parapet walls did not surround all portions of the roof, so safety precautions included a safety perimeter; employees outside the perimeter had to be harnessed and tied off to a portable fall protection anchor system by Raptor.

    The project went off without a hitch, according to Vik. “The mall was 100 percent open during the entire project,” he says. “Things went very smoothly— especially for everything that was involved. One of our mottoes is, ‘The harder the job, the better.’ We like a challenge. We take on a lot of projects other companies shy away from.”

    The keys to his company’s success are coordination and versatility, states Vik. “We do it all,” he says. “We didn’t have to get anybody from outside the company to work on the project. We did all the roofing, all of the HVAC, and all of the hoisting was done in-house. We’ve also got lightning protection inhouse, and we have a solar division. We have a great team. Everyone does their part to get the bids out and get the jobs done. It’s the best team I’ve ever worked with.”

    Team

    Roofing Contractor:Advanced Roofing Inc., Tampa, Fla.
    Consultant:CBA Roof Consulting LLC, Lake Worth, Fla.
    Roof System Manufacturer and Technical Support: Johns Manville, Denver

    (Why?)

    Published at Wed, 26 Jul 2017 21:00:53 +0000