It is not surprising cost is often the main consideration when it comes to specifying commercial products. However, true “cost” reaches far beyond the initial purchase price. When selecting fixtures for a space it pays for specifiers and architects to consider the total cost of ownership, or lifetime cost, of a product to make the most informed decision.
Owners, engineers, and contractors involved in the design, operation, maintenance, and restoration of parking garages and building podium decks need to understand the role and importance of waterproofing systems in protecting these facilities.
Insulated metal panels (IMPs) are used across Canada, but have traditionally been most commonly used for cold storage facilities in the food industry—specifically Québec, Ontario, and British Columbia—mainly due to higher populations within these regions.
With varying degrees of detail and prescription, Canadian building codes—regardless of the model code—require all buildings to be provided with an air barrier. Where the language is more performance-oriented, such as in Part 5 of the National Building Code of Canada (NBC) and Part 3 of the National Energy Code of Canada for Buildings (NECB), key concepts such as “system” and “continuity” are introduced as well as quantitative criteria.
When an architect or designer develop their material palette for a project, organic materials like wood and stone are often aspirational choices. Yet in many instances, these materials do not fit the client’s design budget, purpose, or application, and may not necessarily perform well for the space’s intended use. Thus, designers need beautiful, quality product alternatives to illuminate the beauty of a space while also meeting the functional needs. Laminate is often overlooked and under-celebrated. With almost limitless patterns and designs, low cost, versatility, and resilience, laminate is the go-to material for the design community.
Major infrastructure that affects the lives of tens of thousands on a daily basis must last for its expected life (at the very least)—otherwise, a ripple effect is caused to government budgets, negatively affecting each citizen in some capacity.
After delivering a talk as part of the Architectural Praxis concrete education series at the 2015 CONSTRUCT Show & CSI Annual Convention in St. Louis, this author ran into Keith Robinson, FCSC, RSW, LEED AP, former CSC president and a specifier with DIALOG (pictured above, fifth from the right).
When it comes to buildings, routine maintenance is expected on any structure as wear and tear is inevitable. However, the difference between small repairs and a major retrofit or rehabilitation is significant. Referring to De Sitter’s Law of Fives, a major repair can be expected to cost roughly five times what routine maintenance would have cost.
Canada’s building codes have historically been formulated, at least in part, based on accumulated historic climate data that ultimately provides the essential criteria for most key building component performance characteristics. However, there are indications climate may be beginning to change. If buildings do, in fact, experience different environmental conditions over the next 40 years, these changes could potentially have a significant impact on our building stock.
With some predictions estimating the global population will reach as high as 11 billion by 2050, it is crucial the design community plans infrastructure with sustainable and innovative practices in mind. As concrete is the most commonly used building material in the world—employed more than all other building materials combined—its ability to perform well has a direct impact on how sustainable the structure it supports is.
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