South Carolina Resort’s Metal Roof Complements Classic Low Country Architecture

The new Inn at Palmetto Bluff was inspired by a mansion built on the property in the early 1900s. Photos: Nurnberg Photography, www.nurnbergphotography.com

The recently expanded Palmetto Bluff Resort in Bluffton, South Carolina, now boasts a new 74-room inn designed by Dallas-based HKS Architects. The new Inn at Palmetto Bluff sits alongside an expanded lagoon waterway and was inspired by the R.T. Wilson Jr. mansion built on the property in the early 1900s. Located in the Low Country between Charleston and Savannah, Palmetto Bluff is one of the largest waterfront properties on the East Coast. The resort is set within the 20,000-acre Palmetto Bluff community and conservation preserve that features an array of Southern-style residential neighborhoods ranging from multi-million-dollar legacy family compounds to more traditionally sized single-family homes.

The inn is finished with artisan James Hardie siding on the exterior façade, and a Petersen standing seam metal roof was chosen to complement the classic Low Country architecture. The roof features PAC-CLAD Snap-Clad panels finished in custom color Patrician Bronze. Approximately 75,000 square feet of the 24-gauge Galvalume panels were installed on a tight deadline.

Don Harrier, principal at HKS, said one of the greatest challenges was complying with a long list of restrictions designed to keep additions within the scope of the original buildings, such as a mandated three-story height limit and rules regarding waterways.

The inn is topped with a standing seam metal roof featuring Petersen’s PAC-CLAD Snap-Clad panels. Photos: Nurnberg Photography, www.nurnbergphotography.com

“It’s easy to get into a site like this for construction, but in our world we have staging areas for materials, contractor trailers, etc., and because of the environment, we had to build another building first to house back-of-the-house areas, maintenance, administration and parking,” Harrier says. “There were a lot of logistics involved as far as taking care of the site.”

Installation of the Snap-Clad panels on the 154,000-square-foot luxury inn was done by Southern Roof & Wood Care in Hardeeville, South Carolina. “It was a complicated job with three adjoining sections of the roof and lots of different elevations and planes and dormers. The flashing details were complex,” says David Swanson, president of SRWC.

Southern Roof & Wood Care has considerable experience with Petersen’s PAC-CLAD profiles. “We like Snap-Clad because it doesn’t require mechanical seaming. We use it whenever we can and when it meets the wind uplift requirements,” Swanson notes. “Of course, we also install a lot of Tite-Loc and Tite-Loc Plus, too. We like using the PAC-CLAD products and we can be competitive in the marketplace. We’re really happy with the Petersen relationship. They stand behind their products.”

The Snap-Clad panels were manufactured at Petersen’s plant in Acworth, Georgia. The general contractor was Choate Construction in Savannah, Georgia. The Petersen distributor was Commercial Roofing Specialties in Savannah, Georgia.

TEAM

Architect: HKS Architects, Dallas, Texas, www.hksinc.com

General Contractor: Choate Construction, Savannah, www.choateco.com

Roofing Contractor: Southern Roof & Wood Care, Hardeeville, South Carolina, www.southernroof.com

Distributor: Commercial Roofing Specialties, Savannah, Georgia, www.crssupply.com

MATERIALS

Roof Panels: PAC-CLAD Snap-Clad panels in Patrician Bronze, Petersen, www.pac-clad.com

Contractor Overcomes Challenging Logistics to Re-Roof 16-Story Westin Savannah

The Westin Savannah site posed logistical challenges, as it is bordered by the Savannah River, a canal and the Savannah Convention Center. Photo: SOPREMA

Were you to visit Savannah, Georgia, the Westin Savannah Harbor Golf Resort and Spa would be tough to miss. This landmark property, known for its 18-hole PGA golf course, secluded beach access and on-site spa, is the tallest building in the city at 16 stories. The aura of luxury surrounding the building was threatened, however, when Hurricane Matthew moved through the region, inundating the city with rainwater and causing the aging Westin Savannah roof to fail. With leaks resulting in the closure of a major portion of the hotel’s upper floor, it was clear the building owners would need to move quickly to restore a waterproof seal atop their building.

The job would not be easy. The Westin Savannah is surrounded by the Savannah River on one side, a canal on another and the Savannah Convention Center on a third. The only feasible area left to stage and load the roofing material onto a crane was the front parking loop and valet area — an area that would typically be avoided with any other roofing project. “We only had one spot where we could set up, and that was the biggest challenge,” says Larry Hoffman, the superintendent who oversaw the installation of the roof at the Westin Savannah on behalf of Whitco Roofing, the Westin’s chosen contractor. “We were very limited with regard to any mobility around that hotel, not to mention the fact that we had to get materials onto a roof that was 270 feet from the ground.” 

Envisioning an Approach

The Whitco Roofing team also had to deal with challenging application conditions, given that the roof had many penetrations due to the presence of air conditioning units, towers, exhaust vents, lighting, walkways, ladders, staircases and other equipment. Special care would have to be given to the installation of the flashing to ensure no opportunities for leak formation remained after the roofing job was done. Recognizing that the use of a liquid flashing material was the best bet to keep the roofing layer monolithic despite all the penetrations, the Whitco Roofing team set about selecting the right compatible materials for the job.

SOPREMA’s SENTINEL P150 60-mil PVC-based roofing membrane was selected for the projectbecause we wanted a durable roofing product that was compatible with a liquid flashing material for difficult base flashings encountered during this project,” explains Henri Brickey, director of business development for Whitco Roofing. “We recommended the SOPREMA PVC membrane for several reasons, the first of which is the superior chemical and UV resistance PVC offers over TPO. Since we also intended to wrap the large quantity of concrete and metal support column bases with SOPREMA’s ALSAN RS 230 Flash polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) liquid resin, we made sure the PVC membrane was compatible and that we could include those areas under the roof’s warranty.” 

The Installation Commences

The complex coordination required for a successful roofing installation began on the ground. One week’s worth of material was staged at a time, then a crane was brought in to upload materials to the roof on the same day trash was being downloaded from the old roof tear-off process. All debris had to be carefully bagged and secured with tarps to avoid pollution in the nearby Savannah River, and the delivery and removal of four dumpsters at a time had to be carefully coordinated so that no dumpster was left on the premises overnight, blocking entry to the building. “You had to be out of there by five o’clock with everything, and it had to be done in a particular sequence, further complicating matters,” explains Hoffman.

On the rooftop, existing asphalt-based roofing materials were stripped down to the concrete deck. SOPREMA SOPRA-ISO3.5-inch polyisocyanurate insulation was adhered using SOPREMA DUOTACK 365 foam adhesive to provide improved R-value to the building. Next, the PVC membrane was bonded onto the insulation, providing both a reliable waterproofing layer and a reflective white finish that would help diminish heat absorption compared to the older materials. The liquid resin coating was then applied to prevent water intrusion at all exposed concrete column bases — extending up and coating metal base plates — and at vertical flashing points where air handling units tied into the building’s walls. New tapered crickets were also installed between drains, improving the overall flow of water on the roof and reducing the opportunity for ponding water.

Safety and Communications Prioritized

Throughout the project, OSHA guidelines had to be followed carefully on the rooftop and on the ground to ensure both workers and bystanders entering and exiting the hotel were safe. Flagging and ground guides were used around the staging area, and strict adherence to timelines for deliveries and mobilizations were also critical to the safe execution of the project. The Whitco Roofing team worked closely with the hotel management throughout the process to prevent interference with hotel operations and to minimize risks to guests. 

The building now benefits from a superior roofing membrane that is Energy Star-compliant, upgraded insulation, a strong foam adhesive that helps resist uplift pressure during storms and a monolithic waterproofing layer thanks to the liquid flashing installed around all penetrations. “SOPREMA’s single-ply membranes have a reputation for strength and durability,” notes Brickey, “and especially with the inclusion of the liquid flashing system to deal with difficult flashing details, we were able to provide a long-lasting, warranted waterproofing solution for the Westin.”

In all, more than 14,000 square feet of roofing material was replaced over the course of roughly a month by a large team of installers. In part because the hotel staff was so pleased with the way the job was planned, managed and executed, Whitco Roofing was brought back to install a new roof on a lower section of the building as well. That project was recently completed, positioning the Westin Savannah to resist the elements while serving as a relaxing getaway for the foreseeable future.

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: Whitco Roofing, Atlanta, Georgia, www.whitcoroofing.com

MATERIALS

Roof Membrane: SENTINEL P150 PVC, SOPREMA, www.soprema.us

Insulation: SOPRA-ISO, SOPREMA

Adhesive: DUOTACK 365, SOPREMA

Liquid Flashing: ALSAN RS 230 Flash, SOPREMA

Contractor Shows Versatility During Spectrum Field Restoration

Spectrum Field in Clearwater, Florida, is home to the Philadelphia Phillies in spring training and its minor league affiliate, the Clearwater Threshers. TarHeel Roofing replaced the main roof and restored and waterproofed the walls. Photo: TarHeel Corporation

TarHeel Corporation was founded as TarHeel Roofing in 1981. Headquartered in St. Petersburg, Florida, the company specializes in commercial work including roofing, waterproofing, cladding, damp proofing, exterior renovations, lightning protection and sheet metal. According to John Looney, president and owner of TarHeel Corporation, the company’s name was changed to better reflect its ability to work on the entire building envelope, including above- and below-grade waterproofing. 

When nearby Spectrum Field needed roofing and waterproofing work, Looney saw the project as a perfect opportunity to show off the company’s versatility. The stadium is home to the Philadelphia Phillies during spring training, and it also serves as the home field for the team’s minor league affiliate, the Clearwater Threshers. “We’ve done a lot of sports complexes in the past,” notes Looney. 

TarHeel Roofing restored the roof two years ago, and this year the company waterproofed the walls. The scopes of work included cold-applied roofing, waterproofing, caulking, and glazing, as well as repairing the tie-ins to pedestrian deck areas. “There were a lot of little pieces here that were right in our wheelhouse,” Looney says. 

Roofs and Walls

When the stadium’s existing modified bitumen roof reached the end of its service life, the decision was made to restore it with Garland’s Energizer K Plus FR. “We used Garland’s Energizer system, a cold-applied system with polyester mesh and granule surfacing on it,” Looney notes. 

The roof was restored with Garland’s Energizer K Plus FR system, a cold-applied roofing restoration system with granular surfacing. Photo: The Garland Company Inc.

Some perimeter areas of the roof were removed and repaired after an infrared scan was used to detect any moisture, and then the entire roof surface was cleaned and primed. The fluid-applied system is installed in two coats with a polyester or fiberglass scrim sheet fully adhered into it. Immediately after the second coat, granules are broadcast over the entire surface. “The finished product is very good-looking,” says Looney. 

Work on the vertical surfaces began in September 2018. The complex features walls clad in an exterior insulation and finish system (EIFS), as well as concrete and concrete masonry unit (CMU) walls. “The EIFS, concrete, and CMU walls each required a different application, but the basic scope of work is the same for each, with some variations,” Looney says. 

The walls were first cleaned and repaired. After the walls were pressure washed, crews repaired and replaced caulking at windows, doors and other penetrations. Cracks were filled using Garland’s Green-Lock Sealant XL, a polyether joint sealant with no VOCs. “We took care of cracks in the concrete and any breaks, including damage from baseballs hitting it,” Looney says. “Once the surface was repaired, we moved on the coating application.”

Crews applied Garland’s Tuff-Coat acrylic architectural wall coating. The coating can be applied with either a sprayer or rollers. Both methods were used on the project, but the majority of the work was done with rollers. The tan color was a crucial concern for the owners, and up-front testing ensured the tint would match up perfectly on the various substrates. “There was also some striping involved for aesthetics,” notes Looney. “We put on a band of a darker accent color.”

Crews from TarHeel Roofing cleaned and repaired the walls and waterproofed them with Garland’s Tuff-Coat acrylic architectural wall coating. Photo: TarHeel Corporation

The schedule was sometimes adjusted to accommodate concerts and other events. “The most unusual thing is the actual use of the building, obviously, being a baseball park with a lot of public access,” he says. “It takes a beating from all of the use and people there.”

Accessing some of the wall areas on the site was the biggest challenge on the project, according to Looney. “If you can picture the typical ballfield, you’ve got anything from ground-level vertical walls up to walls tucked behind seating up in the grandstand,” he explains. “Logistically, the challenge was getting access to all of the areas, extending from public concourses all the way up to the owner’s boxes and suites. A lot of that work was done from ground level, actually out on the field, reaching up with big Hi-Los that extended over two or three sections of seating.”

When figuring out the best approach, safety is always the primary concern. “Safety is a big part of any project, beginning with preparation and layout,” Looney says. “Once we were awarded the job, we weighed working from ladders, swing stages, and man lifts. In this project, we opted to do most of it from man lifts because of the safety concerns inherent in working from ladders, swing stages, or even scaffolding in some of these areas.” 

Major-league workmanship is the key to earning repeat business, says Looney. “We don’t do much advertising,” he says. “To us, that means every job has to be done well enough to be asked back. We pay a lot of attention to the details, including safety and the setup. To us, the finished product has to be great — that’s a given — but also the journey, from the start to the completion, is important as well. We do a lot of work on hospitals, health care areas, and industrial sites where us being in the way really isn’t an option. We are very familiar with working around the needs of businesses. So from a logistics and detail point of view, we are very sensitive to making sure the ride is as good as it can be.”

TEAM

Roofing and Waterproofing Contractor: TarHeel Corporation, St. Petersburg, Florida, www.tarheelcorp.com

MATERIALS 

Roof Restoration System: Energizer K Plus FR, The Garland Company Inc., www.garlandco.com

Wall Coating: Tuff-Coat, The Garland Company Inc.

Joint Sealant: Green-Lock Sealant XL, The Garland Company Inc.

Wave-Inspired Canopies on Convention Center Pose Challenges

The Prince Edward Island Convention Centre features distinctive curved canopies inspired by its waterfront location. The roofs of the canopies were covered with a coating to match sections of the walls. Photos: IKO

When the Prince Edward Island Convention Centre was put out for public tender, Ashe Roofing jumped at the chance to work on the high-profile new construction project on the waterfront near the company’s headquarters in Charlottetown. 

Ashe Roofing has been in business for 27 years, specializing in commercial and industrial low-slope roof systems. When their bid was selected, the company got ready to install the roof systems for the structure’s 42,000-square-foot main roof, as well as 10,000 square feet of canopies. 

A two-ply, torch-applied modified bitumen system from IKO was specified for the main roof. According to Boyd Corcoran, general manager of Ashe Roofing, the system was chosen for its durability and its ability to withstand the areas tough winter weather. “It suits our climate,” he notes. “It can stand up to snow and ice dropping from higher roof sections to lower ones.” 

Photos: IKO

The building’s distinctly shaped canopies would be visible from the ground, and the architect insisted the canopy roofs match the EIFS wall color. Initially, a tan single-ply roof membrane was specified for the canopy roofs, but the schedule dictated that construction took place during the winter months, so the decision was made to use the same modified bitumen system used on the main roof. A smooth surface APP cap sheet was used so that the proper color could be attained using an elastomeric roof coating application.

The Installation

The first phase of the project included setting up safety systems. “We used a railing system, and when we were doing the perimeter work, we had to tie off with a personal fall arrest system outside the rails,” Corcoran notes. 

Material was loaded with a telescopic fork lift. Work on the main roof began with installing the vapor barrier, which was covered with Trufoam EPS insulation and 1/4-inch protection board. The system was topped with IKO’s Torchflex TP 180 FF base sheet and finished with the Torchflex TP 250 cap sheet in Frostone Grey. 

The main roof was installed in sections. Crews mechanically installed as much insulation and cover board as they could each day, and each section was topped off with the base sheet. “We’d make sure each section was watertight, and we kept going, one section at a time.”

The cap sheet was installed after all of the roof sections were completed. The roof was installed over both metal and concrete decking. Portions of work over the concrete deck needed special care, as the area was designed to accommodate future expansion. “We could not use any adhesive,” Corcoran explains. “They didn’t want anything on the cement at the end of the day, foreseeing a time in the future when they might take the roof off and use that roof deck as a floor when they added hotel rooms.”

Corcoran cited mechanically fastening these sections as the biggest challenge on the project. “We also had to install a tapered system on the whole thing because it was flat,” he notes. “We ended up with a 10-inch base layer and then the tapered insulation, and had to drill an inch and a half into the cement, so it was hard to find bits long enough to do the job. It was pretty slow going.” 

After the main roof was dried in, crews tackled the canopies, which were made of wood. “There are wavy-style canopies on two sides, and there is a big canopy that goes up at a bit of an angle over the water,” Corcoran explains. “In some sections of the canopies, the flashing had to be cut into 4-foot sections because of the curves. We put a restorative coating on top of the canopies to make sure the color matched the walls. The coating was applied with rollers.”

The job went smoothly and finished on schedule, notes Corcoran, who credits his experienced crews for the orderly progress at the jobsite. “Installing the system on the uphill and downhill portions of the canopies posed a little bit of a challenge, but we have guys that have been installing these systems for 20-plus years,” he says. “They get pretty good at it.” 

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: Ashe Roofing, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, www.asheroofing.com

General Contractor: Brighton Construction, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, www.brightonconstruction.ca

Architect: Chandler Architecture, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, http://wcarch.com

MATERIALS 

Roof Membrane: Torchflex TP 180 FF base sheet, Torchflex TP 250 Frostone Grey cap sheet, IKO, www.iko.com

Cover Board: Protectoboard, IKO

Insulation: Trufoam EPS, IKO

Vapor Barrier: MVP Vapour Barrier, IKO 

At the Ace Hotel, Versatile Rooftop Terraces Capture the Imagination

Located in Chicago’s Fulton Market Historic District, the Ace Hotel features several vegetative roofs and a rooftop bar. Photos: Scott Shigley for site design group ltd.

The Ace Hotel is located in Chicago’s Fulton Market Historic District. It features 159 guestrooms and amenities including rooftop event spaces with stunning views of the city. The complex features several vegetative roofs, including a large fifth-floor terrace and a seventh-floor rooftop bar. The fifth-floor terrace incorporates a sculpture that visitors can climb on and areas that can easily adapt to host a variety of events, from corporate meetings to yoga classes.

The team at site design group ltd., the Chicago landscape architect on the project, worked closely with the lead architect, GREC Architects, and the Ace Hotel team to determine the key design goals for the rooftop spaces. Hana Ishikawa, design principal at site design group, notes the client was looking for an understated design. “In this project, what they really wanted was a prairie that kind of got left on the roof,” she says “So, that’s where the project got started.”

The fifth-floor terrace incorporates a sculpture created by artist Jonathan Nesci that visitors can climb on. An area topped with pavers is used to host a variety of events. Photos: Scott Shigley for site design group ltd.

On the fifth-floor terrace, the materials and plants chosen are meant to evoke a natural prairie landscape, while a section topped with pavers serves as a versatile event space. “We were really focused on creating a space that was super flexible,” Ishikawa says. “You’ll notice there’s a really large pavement area in the front, and they hold all kinds of interesting events there. That’s used pretty frequently, whether it be yoga or the little markets they hold up there. One of the primary functions we needed was a lot of flexibility, and that area works well for that.”

Other roof sections that were not open to the public had different needs. It took a talented team of design, manufacturing and construction professionals to turn the vision for the hotel’s rooftop spaces into reality — and provide the single-source warranty the architect and owner desired. 

A Versatile Roof System

The roof system specified for every roof level was a variation of Hydrotech’s protected membrane roof (PMR) assembly. According to Dennis Yanez, American Hydrotech’s national marketing manager, the foundation of the PMR assembly consists of Hydrotech’s Monolithic Membrane 6125, a hot fluid-applied rubberized asphalt membrane, which is applied directly to the deck and topped with Dow Styrofoam insulation. The system can then incorporate a variety of options including pavers, ballast, and extensive and intensive roof gardens. “The basics — the roofing/waterproofing membrane and the Dow Styrofoam — don’t change,” Yanez says. “One of the advantages of this system is once you apply the membrane and insulation in the field, you can mix and match all of these options and you aren’t changing the integrity of keeping that structure watertight.” 

Kevin Serena, Hydrotech’s garden roofing technical sales coordinator for the central region, worked with the building owner and design team to select the products and systems for each rooftop section. 

The materials and plants chosen for the roof terrace are meant to evoke a prairie landscape, with a trail leading to seating areas. Photos: Scott Shigley for site design group ltd.

“They have a few different roof levels, and there was a different design intent for each area,” Serena says. “There are a few upper roofs that only the occupants of adjacent buildings will see, so what they wanted there was low-maintenance vegetation with good coverage. They went with a sedum mat material. It’s pre-grown outside for over a year, so it’s a very hardy material, and once it becomes established it needs little to no maintenance. That was a goal of theirs for those upper roofs since not a lot of people would be accessing those areas.”

For the large podium deck that was open to the public, the owners wanted to add more interesting vegetation along with other features. “They integrated stone walkways, and they used a more expansive plant palette,” Serena notes. “They used the same sedum carpet as a base planting, and then added some different perennials and grasses throughout the mat to give it some vertical interest and add some biodiversity to the roof.”

Serena also worked closely with the roof system installer, Bennett & Brosseau Roofing Inc., of Romeoville, Illinois, an authorized Hydrotech applicator. “Bennett and Brosseau is one of the best contractors in the area,” Serena says. “They have taken a real interest in doing not only the membrane but all the way up through the growing media and vegetation. They are really into doing the green roof, so they are exciting to work with. They really like doing this type of work, and they do a great job.”

The Installation

Bennett & Brosseau Roofing installed all of the roof systems on the project, as well as the material for the garden roofs. The company also fabricated and installed four custom colors of sheet metal on the project. 

“We had grade-level to roof-level waterproofing on this project,” notes Jim Brosseau, CEO and owner of Bennett & Brosseau Roofing. “On the grade level, we installed pavers and drainage components. We also planted plants and trees in the planters on the plaza and at the grade level as well.”

Photos: Scott Shigley for site design group ltd.

The hotel was constructed at the site of a former cheese-making factory in the Fulton Market District. A part of the existing building was retained, including a wall with a historic mural, but the majority of the project was new construction with a concrete roof deck. “It was in a tight area where access was very limited at the jobsite,” Brosseau notes. “All of the roofs were new, but the owner wanted to tie into an existing wall for historical value.”

Bennett & Brosseau Roofing worked closely with Hydrotech to coordinate material deliveries, and access to the jobsite was eased by a couple of fortuitous events. “One of our vendors actually had some property behind the jobsite, so we were able to stage some material there,” Brosseau recalls. “They also closed the street for some work at a building across the street, so we took advantage of that and were able to stage some material on the street and lift it up with our hoists.” 

Elevators did not reach every level, complicating the logistics. “Safety was a challenge,” Brosseau says. “They had elevators at certain levels, but the rest we had to stage a second time for a double hoist. We had to have certified riggers and an approved lift plan. Every pallet is marked, and Hydrotech does an excellent job packaging material, so that helps the process.” 

Crews installed fall-protection barriers, which included the company’s own engineered bracket system with two-by-fours, as well as a Garlock safety rail system. Roofing work began on the penthouse roofs and the tops of the elevator shafts. “All of the roofs received Hydrotech’s hot fluid-applied rubber,” says Brosseau. 

Photos: Scott Shigley for site design group ltd.

The membrane is installed in two coats. The first coat is 90 mils with fabric reinforcement on top. The second coat is 125 mils, for a total of 215 mils. The hot rubberized asphalt, which is heated to 350-375 degrees, and cools as a solid, forming a monolithic membrane. “The membrane is adhered directly to the deck, and it forms one contiguous layer from parapet to parapet,” Yanez says. “They basically make a bathtub up on top of that roof, and then with all of the other design elements, you can do structural construction on top of the Styrofoam. It’s a much simpler, easier system, and the reality is there are fewer opportunities for it to fail because it’s a very simplistic approach.”

“Hydrotech’s system is easy to work with,” Brosseau notes. “The liquid is a very good product to work with on tough details. Another big advantage of the Hydrotech system, especially in this case, is that it isn’t temperature sensitive.”

Living Roofs

Sections of the roof with limited access were topped with an extensive vegetative system featuring Hydrotech’s InstaGreen sedum mat. River rock was applied as a perimeter border. “We’d get them watertight, and then we’d come back and install the garden systems after the other trades were done on the roof,” Brosseau explains. 

On the fifth-floor terrace, Bennett & Brosseauinstalled pavers, wood steppers and wood benches made from reclaimed Robinia. “We put down granite for pathways,” Brosseaunotes. “We had ballast, intensive garden, extensive garden, pavers, logs and the granite walkway. On Level 5, we had a lot going on.”

The material changes and the ground changes were designed to represent an actual prairie, according to Ishikawa. “There is a little trail that goes off and creates a little circle of seating,” she notes. 

Native grasses were chosen to provide visual interest and survive Chicago’s tough winters. These plants were plugged into the sedum mat to ensure the living roof would have complete coverage at the outset. “That was important to us so that the area wouldn’t be trampled while the native grasses and flora were emerging,” says Ishikawa.

Brosseau credits the support of the manufacturer before and during the project as the key to navigating all of the many details. “We regularly consult with Hydrotech’s technical department on non-standard details,” he says. “We’ll brainstorm to determine what the best solution is. There is also a value beyond that, and that is it helps the owner and the general contractor to see Hydrotech come out and recommend different ways to attack a problem.”

Bennett & Brosseau also installed edge metal, beam wraps, expansion joints, scuppers and downspouts. “The sheet metal was probably the most difficult part of it,” Brosseau says, “We custom fabricated everything in our shop. No two details were the same. For the bar area on Level 7, we fabricated a stainless-steel bar top for them as well.” 

It’s a Jungle Gym Out There

Crowning the fifth-floor roof area is a Nesci dome, a climbable sculpture created by artist Jonathan Nesci that has been likened to an “adult jungle gym.” According to Ishikawa, the blue metal design was inspired in part by the Louis Comfort Tiffany Dome in Chicago’s Cultural Center. “That one is an absolutely gorgeous Tiffany Dome with mosaic tile and glass,” Ishikawa notes. “This one is about the exact size and shape, so it’s kind of a reference of that cultural institution on top of the Ace Hotel. It’s meant to be a climbable, playful structure.”

“This roof is really exciting to us because it’s a very playful design,” Ishikawa continues. “Our firm in general believes that playful design also makes really loved landscapes. We were very excited to work on that part of it.”

Yanez points to the versatility and durability of the roof system as the key to a successful project that provides a long service life and the peace of mind of a single-source warranty. “We are happy to be able to give the market what it wants, and a lot of that hinges on the design creativity and pushing the envelope that the architects do,” he says, “We are very good at adapting to that and offering them a rock-solid assembly that, if applied correctly, should last the lifetime of that structure.”

TEAM

Lead Architect: GREC Architects, Chicago, Illinois, http://grecstudio.com

Landscape Architect: site design group ltd., Chicago, Illinois, www.site-design.com

General Contractor: Power Construction Company, Chicago, Illinois, www.powerconstruction.net

Roofing and Waterproofing Contractor: Bennett & Brosseau Roofing Inc., Romeoville, Illinois, www.bennettandbrosseau.com

MATERIALS

Roof Membrane: Monolithic Membrane 6125-EV, Hydrotech, www.hydrotechusa.com

Membrane Reinforcement: Hydroflex RB II-Hydrotech

Insulation: 60 PSI Extruded Polystyrene Insulation, Hydrotech/Dow, www.dow.com

Drainage Material: GR30 Water Retention and System Filter, Hydrotech

Flashing: Flex-Flash MB Granulated Flashing, Hydrotech

Growth Media: Litetop Intensive Media, Hydrotech

Vegetation: InstaGreen Sedum Carpet, Hydrotech

Roberto Durán Arena in Panama Poses Re-Roofing Challenges

The roof on the Roberto Durán Arena was recently replaced with a 45-mil TPO system from Firestone Building Products. Photos: Firestone Building Products

The Roberto Durán Arena is one of the most iconic multipurpose sports coliseums in the Republic of Panama. Inaugurated in 1970, the arena was named in honor of one of Panama’s best-known athletes, boxer Roberto “Mano de Piedra” Durán, world champion in four weight classes in the 1980s. One of his most acclaimed achievements was winning the 1980 world welterweight title against one of the most important boxers of the era, Sugar Ray Leonard.

The Roberto Durán Arena hosts a wide range of sporting and entertainment events. The 86,000-square-foot building was remodeled in 2009, which is when the original roof was replaced by an insulated roofing panel and modified bitumen membrane system. This system proved to be no match for the high heat, humidity and heavy rainfall in Panama summers. In 2018, Pandeportes, which governs all sports stadiums in Panama, hired SINCO Panama, a certified Firestone Building Products contractor in the country, to fortify the roof and work on the Level 100, 400 and dome slabs to ensure the arena was able to withstand local weather.

Photos: Firestone Building Products

To fix the multiple leaks, the asphalt membrane in levels 100 and 400, was completely removed, and the slopes were repaired with lightweight concrete, which was covered with a protection geotextile. On top of all of that, crews mechanically attached a 45-mil Firestone UltraPly TPO membrane to provide a durable waterproofing system that met all building requirements. A similar process was completed on the dome, including perimeter metal drains.

The unique shape of the dome and the dilapidated state of the existing drainage system made this project a unique technical installation challenge for both Firestone Building Products and SINCO Panama. The team managed the changes needed by replacing the metal gutters and drains and covering them with the same TPO membrane throughout the interior to ensure a completely waterproof system.

The metal gutters and drains were replaced and covered with the same TPO membrane used on the roof to ensure a completely waterproof system. Photos: Firestone Building Products

The 86,000-square-foot re-roof was completed in two and a half months, with four weeks of work completed exclusively on the dome. The distinct curvature of the dome required the team to tailor-cut the TPO membrane to match the domed roof, leaving no wrinkles or loose membrane.

To ensure the most efficient and effective job possible, the technical department at Firestone Building Products and SINCO Panama first developed a 3D model to ensure the orientation of the membranes were as effective as possible, reducing waste and minimizing the number of joints in the membrane.

Beyond working with a uniquely shaped building requiring complex updates, the team also faced challenging weather conditions, including almost constant rain. Panama City, located North of the Equator, features a tropical climate including hot, muggy days with temperatures around 90 degrees Fahrenheit. The work coincided with the rainy season, which yields up to 60 inches of rainfall.

To ensure the work was completed on time, the teams worked extended hours and on weekends to take advantage of the few dry days available. The height of the dome also posed a challenge, as the team faced difficulties during installation due to high winds, but the roofing system attachment was designed to withstand winds of up to 87 miles per hour and an uplift pressure of approximately 110 psf, which made the installation possible. 

The work of Firestone Building Products and SINCO Panama resulted in a new look for the coliseum and ensured the improved performance of the roof for years to come. Despite the challenges faced during the project, the teams completed the project without sacrificing quality, durability and resistance, all of which were key factors required by Pandeportes, the building owner.

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: SINCO Panama

MATERIALS

Roof Membrane: UltraPly TPO, Firestone Building Products (FSBP), www.firestonebpco.com

The Hatch Memorial Shell Shows Off New Roof at 4th of July Celebration

The Boston Pops perform at The Hatch Memorial Shell on July 4, 2018. Photo: Walter Mulligan Photography

The Boston Pops perform at The Hatch Memorial Shell on July 4, 2018. Photo: Walter Mulligan Photography

In an annual tradition, Boston kicks off its outdoor summer concert series with a nationally televised performance by The Boston Pops Orchestra on the 4thof July while fireworks snap and sparkle. The Pops perform from The Hatch Memorial Shell, an amphitheater shaped like the quarter of an orange that opens to the crowd on the Charles River Esplanade.

The difficulty of waterproofing this curved structure became apparent after the Massachusetts Department of Conservation & Recreation (DCR), owner and manager of the Hatch Shell put out a bid for a new roof around Labor Day in 2017. The specification called for a single-ply EPDM sheet with pre-cast concrete panels set atop pedestals as an aesthetic outer shell.

Folan Waterproofing & Construction Co. Inc. of South Easton, Massachusetts, the general contractor, handled the overall project as well as demolition of an old terrazzo roof and installation of the new pre-cast concrete panels. Executive manager Patrick Folan worked closely with roofing contractor John F. Shea Company of Mattapan, Massachusetts, which was responsible for the waterproofing installation.

Working from cloud point data, lasers marked the position of the 1,476 pedestals that would hold the 3-inch thick concrete panels in place on the curved structure. Photo: Kemper System America Inc.

Shea Company project manager Michael Frank, RRC, reviewed the installation challenges with Folan. The EPDM sheet would need to be cut into multiple slices, and then require full adhesion to the curved roof deck as well as along all the lap seams. The pedestals for the 665 concrete panels also posed an issue since the anchor studs would penetrate the EPDM sheet. There would be nearly 4,500 penetrations on the job for the 1,476 stainless steel pedestals alone. No EPDM manufacturer would warrant the installation.

After the contract was awarded in October 2017, the construction team suggested an alternative inspired by a recent project for a youth center in Cambridge. There Shea Company used the Kemperol 2K-PUR liquid-applied reinforced membrane system to waterproof below a plaza deck topped with pedestals and pavers. The DCR and Boston architectural firm Bargmann Hendrie + Archetype Inc. gave the team a green light to explore further.

“The point we made was that because we are dealing with such an odd shape and with so many penetrations for the studs, it would be much easier to install the Kemperol liquid-applied system,” Frank says. “With the single-ply EPDM sheet, there would be ‘miles’ of field seams and, of course, every time you have a lap joint, you have areas that may be suspect at some point for leaking.”

The team contacted Kemperol manufacturer, Kemper System America Inc. of West Seneca, New York, and detailed specifications for the assembly along with cost estimates were presented to the owner and architect about two weeks later. “Obviously, there was a change in installed cost, but it was almost immediately accepted. So, we needed to completely shift gears, and revise our shop drawings and submittals accordingly,” Frank says. Among other things, the design of the stainless steel pedestals was modified to allow the panels to rest a couple of inches above the new reinforced membrane.

Air hammers were used to remove the aging terrazzo and concrete layer. Photo: Kemper System America Inc.

The surface preparation for the waterproofing started in April 2018, with a late May project completion target. The Folan crew removed the old cast-in-place terrazzo roofing system with air hammers and then peeled back an existing neoprene membrane to expose the structural concrete deck. Before the waterproofing membrane could be applied, Folan completely tented the roof with winter enclosures around the scaffolding, and then added diesel heaters to maintain the temperature above 40 degrees F.

Shea Company worked the job across the top of the structure and down row-by-row. After applying a Kempertec EP primer, crews applied Kemperol 2K-PUR resin with high-nap rollers a section at a time while laying Kemperol reinforcement into the resin from 20-foot rolls. Each roll was pre-cut lengthwise and then rerolled so it could be smoothly laid onto the curved surface. This was closely followed by a topcoat of the resin to fully embed the reinforcement in the resin. The system fully adheres to the deck and creates a monolithic watertight surface.

Securing the Anchors

Each pedestal needed to be precisely positioned and anchored into place through the membrane, so the epoxy anchoring system for the studs was key to the project.

The team from John F. Shea Company waterproofed the concrete roof deck with a Kemperol liquid-applied reinforced membrane system. Photo: Kemper System America Inc.

The team from John F. Shea Company waterproofed the concrete roof deck with a Kemperol liquid-applied reinforced membrane system. Photo: Kemper System America Inc.

After the membrane fully cured, 3-D measurements were taken across the dome with point cloud software to help determine the height difference between the surface of the membrane and the desired finished elevation for the pre-cast panels. The surveying firm that made the measurements returned when it was time to set the pedestals.

“Their surveyors marked out the dome with lasers. They would set a mark, and say, ‘This is your point for four panels, and this is the cavity depth for the finished panel elevation,’” Folan explains. There was also GPR (Ground Penetrating Radar) scanning performed to locate existing reinforcement in the original structural concrete. His firm carefully drilled holes for the threaded studs to avoid the existing reinforcing steel, and the studs were then set in epoxy. Shea Company then applied GreatSeal PE-150 sealant around the pedestals and the heads of the bolts.

“Kemper System provided this detail, and they wanted the epoxy to ooze out of the pre-drilled holes when the anchors were inserted,” he says. “We would then hang the pedestals on the studs, and screw nuts onto the studs to hold the pedestal in place.”

The Folan team needed to wait for an architectural review of the pre-cast concrete panels before they could be installed. They were not all the same, but designed and numbered like puzzle pieces for their location on the shell. The 3-inch thick panels averaged 3 feet by 4 feet, and needed to be lowered by crane since they ranged from about 350 to 550 pounds each.

The studs for the pedestals were epoxied in place through the Kemperol membrane and top-sealed with GreatSeal construction sealant, also from Kemper System. Photo: Kemper System America Inc.

The panels were installed row-by-row starting at the bottom with 3/4-inch open joints between. “The biggest factor at that point was the depth of the cavity. Before we set a pedestal, we needed to know whether it should be shimmed 1/16th, 1/8th or 1/4 inch,” Folan says.

Though the panel fabrication process started late, the team worked six days a week with some 10-hour days to complete the job by a final June 15thdeadline. “As fast as they could get us the pre-cast panels, we were putting them in,” he recalls.

Looking back, Folan says the pedestals would have required much more time to install if the Kemperol system had not been selected, since there were nearly 1,500 of them and each would need to be covered with EPDM. “With the Kemper System detail, we could just keep moving to meet the deadline in time for the big July 4thcelebration.”

TEAM

Architect: Bargmann Hendrie + Archetype Inc., Boston, https://bhplus.com
General Contractor: Folan Waterproofing & Construction Co. Inc., South Easton, Massachusetts, www.folanwaterproofing.com
Roofing Contractor: John F. Shea Company of Mattapan, Massachusetts, www.johnfshea.com

MATERIALS

Liquid-Applied Waterproofing System: Kemperol 2K-PUR liquid-applied reinforced membrane system, Kemper System America Inc., West Seneca, New York, www.kemper-system.com

Zinc Roof and Wall Panels Add Sense of Movement to Chicago Boathouse Project

The Eleanor Boathouse at Park 571 is the last of four new boathouses and river launches created by the Chicago Park District to reclaim the Chicago River for water-based recreation. Photos: Courtesy Studio Gang, © Tom Harris

The new Eleanor Boathouse at Park 571 in Chicago’s Bridgeport neighborhood creates the opportunity for greater community recreation and environmental stewardship of the Chicago River. Designed by Studio Gang Architects, the 19,000 square-foot facility is the last of four new boathouses and river launches created by the Chicago Park District to reclaim the Chicago River as a major system of parks and water-based recreation.

The unique form of the two-building boathouse reflects the movement of rowing, according to Studio Gang’s founding principal Jeanne Gang. The design, incorporating alternating roof trusses, was influenced by studying the rhythm and motion of rowing. “The Chicago River boathouses are part of a new environmentally friendly vision for the city’s river,” says Gang. “By making the riverfront a destination for recreation, anchored by dynamic sustainable architecture, we hope to catalyze long-term stewardship and support of the river’s remediation.”

The striking design incorporates zinc panels from Rheinzink in both roof and facade applications. Approximately 23,000 square feet of Rheinzink prePATINA blue-grey Double Lock Standing Seam Panels cover the roof of both buildings. An additional 10,000 square feet of the company’s Flat Lock Tiles clad the facade in a diagonal installation.

Zinc panels were also used to clad one of the other four boathouses completed earlier and also designed by Studio Gang Architects. The WMS Boathouse at Clark Park on the northwest side of the city was the second of the new boathouses to open and utilized 7,000 square feet of vertically-oriented Rheinzink Flat-Lock Tiles for the facade.

The unique form of the 19,000 square-foot facility was designed to reflect the movement of rowing. Photos: Courtesy Studio Gang, © Tom Harris

The panels for both projects were fabricated by Rheinzink systems partner Sheet Metal Supply Ltd. (SMS), Mundelein, Illinois. Installation of the panels on the Eleanor Boathouse was done by Bennett & Brosseau, Inc., Romeoville, Illinois.

The panels chosen for the project were the result of an exhaustive search that ruled out more expensive alternatives. “Rheinzink reduced the cost and provided the great diagonal look that Studio Gang wanted,” says Bennett & Brosseau project manager Ryan Broom. “It’s a ‘full zinc’ job with both the facade and the roof and really turned out nice.”

SMS vice president Ben Kweton credits Broom with providing the invitation to become involved in the project. “When Bennett & Brosseau approached us with the value engineering opportunity, we jumped at the chance to provide pricing and to remind the design team of the success of Rheinzink on the earlier boathouse project,” Kweton says.

The design team also opted for a slightly hybrid version of traditional flat lock panels. “The tiles we fabricated had a slight offset at the top to bring the panel overlaps more into plane and to create a slight reveal,” Kweton says.

Broom finds working with zinc rewarding, noting, “It provides a great quality look and allows more architectural detailing than can be done with many other metals.”

TEAM

Architect: Studio Gang Architects, Chicago, www.studiogang.com
Metal Fabricator: Sheet Metal Supply Ltd. (SMS), Mundelein, Illinois, www.sheetmetalsupplyltd.com
Installer: Bennett & Brosseau, Inc., Romeoville, Illinois, www.bennettandbrosseau.com

MATERIALS

Roof Panels: prePATINA blue-grey Double Lock Standing Seam Panels, Rheinzink, www.rheinzink.us
Wall Panels: Flat Lock Tiles, Rheinzink

New NHL Practice Facility and Community Center Sports Vegetative Roof

The American Hydrotech Extensive Garden Roof Assembly was installed on two sections of the roof. The system was topped with pre-grown mats featuring mature sedum plants. Photo: American Hydrotech Inc.

The Chicago Blackhawks have captured the hearts of the city of Chicago along with three Stanley Cups in the last decade. The Blackhawks routinely lead the league in attendance at the United Center, and fans were excited when the team announced it would build a new 125,000-square-foot training facility and community center in downtown Chicago.

Completed earlier this year, the MB Arena features two NHL-sized ice rinks and other amenities including a fitness center, dining options, and spaces that can be rented for outings and events. The facility is the practice site for the Blackhawks and also hosts youth hockey, adult hockey leagues and public skating.

When plans for the project were unveiled, architects and planners mandated the facility meet or exceed all green and sustainable standards for the city. Chicago has been a leader in promoting vegetative roofs to help control storm water runoff, and this new construction project was no exception. The arena includes the construction of 24,000 square feet of green roof systems to complement the structure’s 68,000-square-foot main roof. A 60-mil TPO system manufactured by Carlilse SynTec was specified for the upper roof assembly, and plans called for an American Hydrotech Extensive Garden Roof Assembly to be placed on two lower sections of the roof.

The Garden Roof Assembly

Architect HOK worked with American Hydrotech during the design stage to select roofing components and plants that were optimized for the climate conditions and the building’s structural limitations.

According to Dennis Yanez, national marketing manager, American Hydrotech, and Kevin Serena, garden roofing technical sales coordinator for the central region, the structure’s metal deck necessitated a lightweight system.

The 125,000-square-foot facility 24,000 square feet of green roof systems that complement the structure’s 68,000-square-foot main roof. Photo: Chicago Blackhawks.

“Our 4-inch extensive garden roof system was ideal for this project,” says Yanez. “Since part of this project had a metal deck, there are more structural capacity concerns than with a concrete deck, so we were able to put together a lightweight, built-in-place system.”

The assembly consists of a hot-applied rubberized asphalt membrane, MM6125, which is applied to the roofing substrate to form a monolithic coating. It is topped with a root barrier and Dow Styrofoam insulation. The system also incorporates Hydrotech’s Gardendrain GR15, a molded polyethylene panel designed to retain water, filter fabric, lightweight growing media, and mature plants.

The plants are installed in the form of the InstaGreen Sedum Carpet, a pre-grown mat that comes in 25-square-foot rolls. It contains between nine and 15 different types of sedum and provides instant coverage when it is installed.

Key benefits of the system include reducing the urban heat island effect, purifying the air, and limiting storm water runoff, notes Yanez. “The Extensive Garden Roof Assembly is able to capture more than 1.5 inches of water on the roof, which plays a major role in storm water management,” he says.

The system also protects the membrane from ultraviolet (UV) degradation and damage from wind-blown debris. “Most importantly, for us, a garden roof is just another version of a PMR, or protected membrane roofing,” says Yanez. “Because the membrane is always in a PMR application, with Dow insulation over it, whatever ballast — whether it’s gravel ballast, or architectural pavers, or the garden roof assembly — is in place makes it literally impossible for the membrane to get damaged. It also mitigates the climate swings, keeping the membrane at a more constant temperature year-round.”

This system has a proven track record, according to Yanez. “We’ve been doing this going back 50 years on parking decks under regular topsoil, where weight wasn’t a concern,” he points out. “This is just a more modern version of that, but we’re putting it on the 4th, or the 14th, or the 99th floor.”

The Roofing Installation

All American Exterior Solutions, Lake Zurich, Illinois, is an approved applicator for both key manufacturers. The union contractor installed the Carlisle TPO system on the building’s main roof and the Hydrotech green roofs on the two lower roof levels.

Willie Hedrick, division manager at All American Exterior Solutions, notes that the TPO roof was installed first. “The deck was acoustic, so first we had to lay strips insulation in the flutes over the entire main roof,” he says.

The lightweight growth media was lifted to the roof in 2-yard totes. Photo: Christy Webber Landscapes.

Areas that housed mechanical equipment were reinforced with two layers of 5/8-inch DensDeck from Georgia-Pacific. Two layers of 2.6-inch insulation were then installed, followed by the 60-mil TPO, which was mechanically attached using the RhinoBond system from OMG Roofing Products. The attachment system uses induction welding technology to attach the membrane to the fasteners and plates that secure the insulation — without penetrating the membrane.

The main roof was originally designed as fully adhered system, but work began in January, and the temperature constraints ruled out some adhesives. “Once we made the switch to RhinoBond, we were able to install the membrane even though we did it during the winter,” Hedrick says.

Most of the TPO roof was surrounded by high parapet walls, and in other areas the safety perimeters were marked with flags. “At a few points at the highest points of the main roof we had to put up some the flags, and if you were outside of the flags you had to be tied off,” notes Hedrick. “The mid-roofs had short parapet walls, and on those roofs, we set up flags and had 100 percent fall protection outside the safety perimeter. For the lower green roof, we put guardrails up on the parapet to eliminate the fall hazard.”

The Garden Roofs

After the TPO sections were installed, work began on the extensive garden roof assemblies. The mid-roof had a metal deck, so the first step was to screw down 5/8-inch USG Securock cover board and strip in the seams. “At that point, we installed the liquid-applied membrane and the protection board,” Hedrick says.

The second green roof was installed over a concrete deck, so the application was a bit different. The membrane was applied directly to the concrete. A late change was made in the configuration of the lower green roof to take advantage of the space. “The owner decided to add a terrace to the lower green roof so people could walk out and see the roof and views of the city,” Hedrick recalls.

Before the growing media and plants were added, electronic field vector mapping (EFVM) was conducted by International Leak Detection to determine if there were any voids in the membrane. “You’ve got to confirm everything is 100 percent watertight before we start setting the components down,” Hedrick says. “We usually do the test and start putting the components down the next day to minimize exposure. The subcontractor we worked with to do the landscaping, Christy Webber, performed well. Since some of the components are loose laid, we worked with them to put down enough soil to hold everything in place. We worked hand-in-hand getting the all of the components and soil in.”

The Landscape Work

Jim Waldschmidt, project manager for Christy Webber Landscapes, Chicago, oversaw the installation of the lightweight growing media and sedum mats on the roof. Christy Webber is a full-service union landscaping company, and Waldschmidt notes that roofing work is a small but growing share of the company’s business. “We work with a few different commercial roofers,” he says. “This year we’ve done maybe 10 commercial projects.”

After the growing media was evenly spread out, the sedum mats were laid into place by crews from Christy Webber Landscapes. Photo: Christy Webber Landscapes.

Logistics at the site made for an easy delivery and setup — an unusual situation in downtown Chicago. “We were able to deliver the soil almost a week before we were scheduled to go out there, so we had everything on site and knew we wouldn’t have to worry about waiting,” Waldschmidt notes. “We just had to bring in a crane and lift up the soil bags. We had a pretty easy installation compared to other green roofs we’ve done.”

Growing media was lifted to the roof in 2-yard tote bags, which were cut open to disperse the contents. Three days after the growing media was in place, Christy Webber crews returned to install the sedum mats. “The sedum mats are delivered on pallets almost like the way a roll of sod would be delivered,” says Waldschmidt. “We just had to set the pallets on the roof, pull off the sedum mats and unroll them.”

A temporary irrigation system was set up to help the plants get established in the hot July temperatures. “Everything looks great now,” Waldschmidt says. “All of the sedum up there is thriving.”

Growth Sector

In this high-profile project, with a high-profile owner, making sure the system was error-free was critical, notes Serena. “Chicago is definitely the leader in vegetative roofs, and has been for more than 10 years,” he says. “This is another prime example. There was never a question whether this building would have a green roof on it. It’s a credit to Chicago, and it is a credit to the Chicago Blackhawks.”

Hedrick is proud to be part of the green roof movement. “I like the challenge, and I like the diversity,” he says. “When the Blackhawks went to the Stanley Cup championship and the blimp was hovering over the arena, I could see a couple of my projects on TV. It reminded me of all the time, effort, attention to detail, and collaborative hard work that it took to produce the final product. We’re turning typically unusable roof areas into useful space for amenities.”

The key driver of green roofs is storm water management, notes Yanez, but turning rooftops into useful space is another key benefit. “We’re seeing more and more city incentives for storm water management,” he says. “In urban areas, people are also taking advantage of existing space with green roofs. It’s a growing industry — pun intended.”

TEAM

Architect: HOK, Chicago, www.HOK.com
General Contractor: James McHugh Construction, Chicago, www.McHughConstruction.com
Roofing Contractor: All American Exterior Solutions, Lake Zurich, Illinois, www.AAEXS.com
Landscape Contractor: Christy Webber Landscapes, Chicago, www.ChristyWebber.com

MATERIALS

Garden Roof System:
Cover Board: Securock Gypsum-Fiber Roof Board, USG, www.USG.com
Membrane: MM6125 hot rubberized asphalt membrane, American Hydrotech Inc., www.HydrotechUSA.com
Protection Sheet: Hydroflex 30, American Hydrotech Inc.
Root Barrier: Root Stop, American Hydrotech Inc.
Insulation: DOW Styrofoam, DOW Chemical, www.Dow.com
Drain Board: Gardendrain GR15, American Hydrotech Inc.
Filter Fabric: System Filter fabric, American Hydrotech Inc.
Growing Media: LiteTop Engineered Growing Media, American Hydrotech Inc.
Plants: InstaGreen Sedum Carpet, American Hydrotech Inc.

TPO Roof System:
Membrane: 60-mil TPO, Carlisle SynTec, www.CarlisleSyntec.com
Cover Board: DenDeck, Georgia-Pacific, www.BuildGP.com
Attachment System: RhinoBond, OMG Roofing Products, www.OMGroofing.com

Roof Restoration Project Brings Back Luster to Quicken Loans Arena

The 170,000-square-foot roof of Quicken Loans Arena was completely restored using a liquid-applied system from Tremco Roofing. Photos: Tremco Roofing and Building Maintenance

Re-roofing sports and entertainment venues presents its own set of challenges. Sports arenas usually host concerts and other events, so scheduling and logistics can be difficult. Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland — also known as “The Q” — is home to the Cleveland Cavaliers of the NBA, and it hosts some 200 other diverse events every year, including concerts and conventions. In 2015, realizing the roof was reaching the end of its useful life, the owners looked for advice on their next move. A team of roofing professionals recommended a roof restoration system that would provide the protection and recreate the aesthetics of the original roof — and keep disruption to the facility at a minimum.

Ohio companies stepping up to help the home team included architect Osborn Engineering, headquartered in Cleveland; roof consultant Adam Bradley Enterprises of Chagrin Falls; roofing manufacturer Tremco Roofing and Building Maintenance, headquartered in Beachwood; and roofing contractor Warren Roofing & Insulating Co., located in Walton Hills. After comprehensive testing revealed that more than 90 percent of the roof could be restored, they developed a plan to clean, repair and completely restore the 170,000-square-foot main roof of Quicken Loans Arena using a liquid-applied system from Tremco Roofing.

John Vetrovsky of Warren Roofing and Joe Slattery of Tremco Roofing shared their insights on the project with Roofing magazine. Both men were brought in during the planning stages of the project and saw it through to completion. “We were helping to budget the project with Adam Bradley and Osborn Engineering,” notes Vetrovsky. “They were asking about a few different systems, and the Tremco system was the best fit for the project.”

Warren Roofing has served the greater Cleveland and Akron area since 1922, and Tremco’s roots in northeast Ohio go back to 1928. Warren Roofing served as the general contractor and roofing contractor on the project. The scope of work included updates to the lightning protection system, the safety cable system, and the heat trace system used to melt snow in the gutters.

Repairing the Existing Roof

The existing system was the structure’s original roof. It was 24 years old, and consisted of a mechanically attached hypalon membrane over two layers of polyisocyanurate insulation totaling 3 inches. The roof membrane was showing some wear, and sections had sustained damage from an interesting source: fireworks from nearby Progressive Field, home of the Cleveland Indians, launched after the Indians hit home runs. After the damage was detected, the team changed the direction the fireworks were launched, and the problem ended.

Crews from Tremco Roofing cleaned the roof using the company’s RoofTec system, which recaptures the water and returns it to a truck to be filtered. Photos: Tremco Roofing and Building Maintenance

Despite the damage, visual analysis and a nuclear roof moisture test using a Troxler meter confirmed the roof was an excellent candidate for restoration. “There was some wet insulation and warped insulation, and we marked off those areas that had to be replaced,” notes Slattery. “It was a small fraction of the total job.”

Crews from Warren Roofing removed and replaced the damaged insulation, cutting through the membrane all the way down to the existing 6-mil vapor barrier on the deck. “All of that insulation had to be stair-stepped back so we could properly lap in the new material,” Vetrovsky says. “We got rid of all of the damaged insulation, and we repaired the vapor barrier. Then we staggered the two new layers of insulation, matching the existing thickness.”

Where possible, the existing membrane was pulled back and glued into place. In sections where new membrane was needed, crews adhered pieces of EPDM.

The plan specified adding the fasteners in the existing roof and any repaired sections before the coating system was applied. Tremco Roofing conducted uplift testing through Trinity ERD to ensure the results met or exceeded the specified design. “There was a significant upgrade to the fastening,” Vetrovsky says. “Because of the shape of the building, the perimeter enhancement was probably the greatest I’ve ever seen.”

Screws and 3-inch plates were used. In the field, the minimum was 4 feet on center, 12 inches apart. In the perimeter, fasteners were installed 2 feet on center, 8 inches apart. “It worked out nicely because the fastening ended up in the middle of the sheet, and now the sheet has fasteners that are original at the seam, and a foot or two over, there is a row of new fasteners,” notes Vetrovsky.

Cleaning Up

Prior to the fasteners being installed, the membrane was cleaned by crews from Tremco Roofing using the company’s RoofTec system. “We cleaned the membrane no more than 30 days ahead of what Warren Roofing was doing,” notes Slattery. “We had to mobilize at least three times to clean the roof so the time elapsed would never be more than 30 days.”

The three-step restoration process consists of a primer, a base coat with a fiberglass mat embedded in it, and a topcoat. Here, crews embed the fiberglass mat in the base coat. Photos: Tremco Roofing and Building Maintenance

The cleaning solution is applied using a custom-designed tool that looks like a floor polisher. It has a 2-foot diameter head that spins to clean the surface and a vacuum that recaptures the water, which is returned via hoses to a truck so contaminated waste water, environmental pollutants and high-pH cleaning solvents can be filtered out. “All of that water goes back into the sanitary system after it’s filtered,” Slattery explains. “It does not go into the sewer system.”

“It’s very fast, it’s very effective, and it’s very efficient because you can easily see the areas that have been cleaned,” notes Vetrovsky. “With power washing, you don’t have any way to filter the water.”

The biggest challenge on the cleaning portion of the project was the arena’s sheer size. Approximately 500 feet of hoses were needed to supply water and return it to the truck for filtering.

Cleaning of the substrate is a crucial step, according to Vetrovsky. “The system really does a nice job cleaning the membrane, and that is the key to any restoration project,” he says. “You’re only as good as the surface you’re applying it to.”

Applying the New Roof System

After the sections were cleaned, crews installed the liquid-applied AlphaGuard MT system. The three-step process consists of a primer, a base coat with a fiberglass mat embedded in it, and a topcoat. In this case, the primer was applied with rollers. “The area that we primed each morning was the section we would apply the first coat of AlphaGuard MT with the fiberglass mat that afternoon,” Vetrovsky says. “We did not prime ahead. We didn’t want to take the chance of dust adhering to the primer.”

The top coat was applied with both rollers and spray equipment. Photos: Tremco Roofing and Building Maintenance

Care had to be taken with the schedule to complete the work efficiently. “Once the base coat is on, you have 72 hours to apply the top coat,” Vetrovsky explains. “We would install the base coat and the fiberglass mat for two to three days to get a big enough area. The topcoat would go on faster because you’re not embedding any mesh into it. You really had to always keep an eye on the future weather to make sure you could get the topcoat on within the 72 hours.”

The topcoat was applied with both rollers and spray equipment. After the topcoat was applied, crews installed a second coat with sand embedded in it as a wear surface. Because of the roof’s curved surface, walk pads were not feasible, so the sand was used to provide additional traction for any workers conducting ongoing maintenance.

The sand was broadcast by hand and back-rolled into the coating to maintain a uniform appearance. “Part of this project was to make sure the sand looks uniform when it is visible from a blimp overhead,” notes Vetrovsky. “That was a difficult task, but the guys did a great job.”

The roof features three different finish colors, which were custom designed to match the roof’s original color scheme. The main roof is light gray, with black under the large LED sign. The sections over the wings are white, as are the 2-foot-wide stripes.

“They wanted black under the new LED sign so it would really show the letters nice and clear, even during the day,” says Vetrovsky. “We also put the white stripes back to match the roof’s original appearance. That was a challenge, to keep everything straight. It’s hard to chalk lines on a curve, but it came out nice. Everything matches what the original roof looks like.”

Penetrations for the sign included round posts that held the rails about 2-1/2 feet above the roof level. The liquid-applied membrane made coping with details easy, according to Vetrovsky. “The liquid membrane makes the flashing details all one piece with the roof system,” he says. “We removed the existing boot flashings so that we could seal directly to the conduit or steel posts.”

Gutters, Lightning Protection and Safety Systems

The large commercial gutters also needed to be refurbished. The gutters were 4 feet deep and 4 feet wide, and were outfitted with a cable snowmelt system, which had to be removed. “The gutters had a lot of damaged insulation, so material in the gutter sections was 100 percent torn off,” notes Vetrovsky.

After the roof surface was cleaned, the restoration system was applied. The three step process consists of a primer, a base coat with a fiberglass mat embedded in it, and a topcoat. Photos: Tremco Roofing and Building Maintenance

In the gutters, tapered insulation was installed, and a cover board — DensDeck from Georgia-Pacific — was added for increased durability. New EPDM membrane was installed and cleaned prior to the three-step coating application. New heat trace cable was also installed.

The lightning protection system also required repair, and close coordination with the subcontractors was critical. “The existing lightning protection had to be removed to apply the new roof system, but we couldn’t remove it 100 percent, because we still had to have an active lightning protection system for the building,” says Vetrovsky. “We rearranged the lightning system and installed new stanchions to try to eliminate as many horizontal lines as we could.”

During construction, key to the safety plan was a perimeter barrier system, which was installed by workers who were 100 percent tied off. After the system was in place, workers inside the barricades did not need to wear personal fall arrest systems. “The entire perimeter had a barricade system put on before any material was even loaded,” Vetrovsky says. The company makes its own barricade sections, which are anchored to the parapet walls and gravel stop edges and feature a downward leg for added support.

As part of the project, crews also installed permanent safety equipment. “There was an existing tie-off system out there, but it was not a certified system and we couldn’t use it,” Vetrovsky says. “We brought that to the owner’s attention and replaced it with a new certified tie-off system manufactured by Guardian Safety.”

Challenging Schedule

Progressive Field and the Quicken Loans Arena are right next to each other, and logistics and scheduling around the stadiums was difficult. Work began in 2016 and finished in 2017, and the demanding schedule was made even more difficult when both the Indians and the Cavaliers made deep runs into the playoffs. In 2016, the Cavs became NBA Champions. But it was the Indians making it to the 2016 World Series that posed bigger logistical problems for the re-roofing project.

The restored roof recreates the original color scheme, which features three different custom colors. The main roof is light gray, with black under the large LED sign, while the sections over the wings stripes are white. Photos: Tremco Roofing and Building Maintenance

“The first part of the schedule was the most difficult, as we had the get the black coating on the roof under the sign prior to the playoffs,” Vetrovsky says. The sign covered approximately 30,000 square feet of roof area, and it was difficult to access the roof surface beneath it. “Crews had to work on their hands and knees to apply the coating beneath the steel framing. That was towards the fall, when the weather started changing, and one of the biggest hurdles was just getting the roof dry in the morning. It got colder and colder as we got down to the wire, but we made our deadline for the work under the sign.”

The staging area was also limited, and the crane could only lift material to one section of the roof. Some material had to be moved by hand some 2,000 feet. “It was an awfully long walk from one end of that roof to the other,” Vetrovsky recalls.

Concerts and other events held during the construction cycle made the schedule even more challenging. “The most notable event was probably the Republican National Convention, which totally shut the site down for more than a week because of security,” notes Slattery.

Concerts usually necessitated loading in the early morning and clearing the staging area by 8 a.m., but usually work could continue during the day. “We had to do a lot of coordination to make sure we had what we needed to work the entire day and also not go against our commitment to the owner that we would not work past certain hours,” Vetrovsky says. “Many of the special events started after 7 p.m., so we would be long gone by then.”

Championship Caliber

The project was wrapped up earlier this year. Vetrovsky and Slattery agree that the system chosen was a great fit for this project for several reasons. With restoration, there is less noise, less disruption, and less equipment than with a re-roofing project, and the roof has a warranty for the next 20 years. The process also limits negative impact on the environment by preventing removal and disposal of the old roof system.

“The weight was also a factor,” notes Vetrovsky. “With the existing structure, there wasn’t a lot of room for a different type of roof system with heavy cover boards. This roof system was perfect because it doesn’t add a lot of weight.”

The coating also minimized installation time, notes Slattery. “The disruption of a roof replacement in a hospitality setting like that, where they need 250 days of revenue stream, restoration becomes a real attractive option,” he says. “I can’t think of one day where we really disrupted anything.”

Vetrovsky points to his talented crews as the key to meeting tough schedules with top-quality production “What we can offer is skilled labor,” he says. “We’re a union contractor and our guys are well trained. The harder, the better for us. We can handle projects that most other contractors won’t even put a number to — this project being one of those.”

He credits Adam Livingston, a third-generation foreman for Warren Roofing, for his work on the project.  “With his experience and attention to detail, we were able to complete this project on time, meet the expectations of the client and Tremco, and match the unique aesthetic requirements of the roof,” says Vetrovsky. “We have a lot of great employees who take pride in their work. Take all of that together, that’s why we can be successful on projects like the Quicken Loans Arena.”

The Cavaliers taking the NBA Championship during the project only added to the excitement. “It’s a great feather in our cap,” notes Slattery. “Restoration is a growing segment of the market. Instead of letting the clock run out on these roofs, if you catch them at the right time, it can be a phenomenal way to keep costs down and it’s good for the environment because it’s not adding waste to landfills.” 

TEAM

Architect: Osborn Engineering, Cleveland, Ohio, www.osborn-eng.com
Roof Consultant: Adam Bradley Enterprises, Chagrin Falls, Ohio, www.adambradleyinc.com
General Contractor: Warren Roofing & Insulating Co., Walton Hills, Ohio, www.warrenroofing.com

MATERIALS

Roof Cleaning System: RoofTec, Tremco Roofing, www.tremcoroofing.com
Roof Restoration System: AlphaGuard MT, Tremco Roofing