Focus on Resilient Design to Fortify Coastal Areas From Hurricanes

Architects are looking at resilient design concepts and materials to mitigate the flooding and wind damage caused by extreme weather events.

As Hurricane Lane hurdles its way toward Hawaii packing Category 4 winds, the second-part of our series on resilient design is quite timely.

Sea-level rise and catastrophic storms have clearly had serious consequences for our coastal areas and islands and will continue to do so. The cost estimates for hurricane damage in the U.S. continue to rise; they are now hovering at about $300 billion in the U.S. alone, based on last year’s three major storms. In addition to the many scientists, previously mentioned, who are focused on structural solutions to ensure more resilient design, many design professionals are also addressing these issues.

At a recent A+AIA-Architect forum, a group of award-winning architects shared insights into mitigating risk at waterfront properties and strategies for designing for a resilient future. Wanda Lau, editor of tech, practice, and products for ARCHITECT conducted the panel session with Lance J. Brown, co-chair of AIANY’s Design for Risk and Reconstruction committee; Jeremy Alain Siegel, associate and senior designer at BIG; Eric Fang, AIA, principal at Perkins Eastman; and Claire Weisz, FAIA, principal-in-charge at WXY Studio.

Treacherous coastal storm waters, flooding and water damage are as serious as the impact of wind in an extreme storm. To help us better understand the nuances of designing and constructing flood-resistant buildings and infrastructure, the New York Times offered this handy guide and glossary of terms.

We have little control over the increasing pattern of extreme weather events, but clearly professionals in our industry can make a difference by utilizing resilient design concepts and materials in new construction as well as restoration.

 


Building with Resilient Design Is a Worthwhile Investment

As yet another hurricane season begins, MIT scientists are calculating the long-term value of investing in resilient design.

With hurricane season upon us, an expert at MIT offers insights into the value of investing in what he calls hazard-resistant construction or resilient design. In an interview with U.S. News & World Report, Jeremy Gregory, a research scientist with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, looks at the benefits of building structures that can better weather a major storm and concludes that, “While it may be pricier upfront, it can pay off in the long run.”

Gregory, who is also executive director of MIT’s Concrete Sustainability Hub believes that being proactive about hazard mitigation and building structures for the long term that are resilient to extreme weather events is not only critical for saving lives but is also a cost-effective investment.

Waves crash over a seawall from Biscayne Bay as Hurricane Irma passes by, Sunday, Sept. 10, 2017, in Miami. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

As communities continue to rebuild from the devastating damage wrought by hurricanes in recent years, there is more focus on resilient building materials and designs that can mitigate future damage. It is estimated that a record $309.5 billion in disaster costs were incurred by the U.S. last year due to hurricane’s Harvey, Irma and Maria. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has recently announced that 2018 doesn’t promise to be much better hurricane-wise. They believe the 2018 season “has a 75 percent chance of being near- or above-normal, and that one to four major hurricanes may develop”.

At MIT, scientists are evaluating the cost of resilient building using a life-cycle approach that includes the costs of doing initial construction, maintenance throughout the life of the building, energy consumption, and an estimate of hazard repairs (i.e. costs that might be sustained due to hurricanes).  This is important, Gregory says, in calculating what the payback is on hazard-resistant construction.  “Most often, this kind of construction costs more upfront, but there are paybacks for it over the long run,” he says.

As major natural disasters become more frequent, safety and public health experts say civic leaders should treat these severe weather events as the new “norm” and prioritize disaster resilience in community planning and rebuilding. According to the National Institute of Building Sciences,  every pre-emptive dollar spent on mitigation can save approximately $6 in future disaster losses.

A destroyed apartment complex in Rockport, Texas after Hurricane Harvey passed through in 2017.

Because there aren’t always incentives for developers to take life-cycle costs into perspective, government needs to play a role in encouraging these practices. To help, MIT has developed an online tool called the BEMP (Break-Even Mitigation Percent) which calculates how much can building owners can invest in mitigation and still break even over the lifetime of the building. “The whole idea is to give people a ballpark figure of how much additional costs are associated with mitigation,” says Gregory.


Sto Provides Iconic Exterior for New Jersey Residential Complex

333 Grand in the Liberty Harbor area of Jersey City is an iconic showcase of energy efficient, decorative exterior insulation & finish systems.

Located on 2,500 feet of waterfront in the lower Hudson Bay, the Liberty Harbor area in Jersey City, N.J. provides magnificent views of New York Harbor. It’s a commuters’ haven due to its proximity to Manhattan and the area’s excellent public transportation system. An urbanist-inspired vision has spurred development in the area, including the recent completion of 333 Grand — an 18-story, residential apartment building offering the latest in luxury and style.

With an iconic facade, wide sidewalk area and extensive amenities that include ground floor retail space, 333 Grand is a coveted waterfront address. The building’s exterior is especially decorative, featuring a stunning curved façade, oversized windows, multiple textured surfaces and vibrant colors. In fact, the 80,000 square-foot, multi-family, mixed-use complex is a signature representation of today’s high-caliber exterior insulation and finish systems.

The Sto Wall Story

Developer Peter Mocco and his architects at Urban Architecture wanted an exterior wall system for 333 Grand that would serve as an effective air and moisture barrier to weather the elements, but they didn’t want to compromise on aesthetics. With specifications calling for multiple cladding types and shapes, the designers realized it was going to be impossible to develop the structure they wanted with standard building materials. So they turned to a StoTherm® ci wall system incorporating Sto Limestone and StoCreativ® Brick specialty finishes.

The StoTherm® ci EPS-based, high performance, integrated wall system offered both sustainability and design flexibility. It includes a seamless, fluid-applied air and moisture barrier with continuous insulation (ci) and advanced drainage capabilities. The StoTherm® ci system improves indoor comfort and air quality while maintaining maximum curb appeal and lowering overall life-cycle costs.

The applicator on the job, Richard Riley of Simpson Plastering, said the radius building envelope was a challenge; each drop had nine major architectural attributes with five continuous architectural elements. “Using Sto products and taking advantage of the technical advice and other resources the Sto team offered,”Riley declared, “we had the resources to complete the project in record time.”

Mocco was especially pleased with the classic look of the StoCreativ Brick – a cost effective, energy efficient, lightweight, easy-to-apply decorative wall finish system. Using self-adhering stencils applied over a primer layer to create the appearance of mortar, this finish system offers a sustainable alternative to heavier brick, while avoiding the hassle of dealing with multiple trades and cumbersome accessories.

The water-resistant Sto Limestone Finish provided an extra layer of protection, repelling moisture and wind-driven rain. A lightweight and easily installed architectural wall finish, Sto Limestone provided the classic look and feel of natural stone at a fraction of the expense. When designed as part of a Sto cladding system, this durable 100% acrylic finish can create the appearance of stone arches, reliefs and other distinctive architectural features.

“Thanks to Sto Corp, the building exterior at 333 Grand provides an energy-efficient, resilient envelope with a much smaller carbon footprint and higher LEED certification results,” observes Mocco. “It’s also a study in architectural design.”


The Resurgence of Postmodern Architecture

Grayson Perry and FAT's House for Essex (2015) is one example of the revival in Postmodern architecture.

According to the pundits, Postmodern architecture is experiencing a “revival,” and despite its critics, the design theme is far from long-gone. In fact, it is a style being adopted by many contemporary architects and designers.

Postmodern architecture emerged in the late 1960s as a reaction to the Modernism style, which gained popularity in the early decades of the 20th century. Modernism in architecture was intended to better reflect the experience and values of modern industrial life; it morphed into and included the Mid-Century Modern architectural trend that evolved between the years of 1945-1965.

At a certain point in the 1960’s, Modernism seemed to lose its luster and Postmodernism evolved as an escape from what some considered the monotony of Modernism. It offered an alternative to Modernism’s more entrenched ideals and rigidity of design conventions. Postmodern architecture was, and is, more expressive, more flexible, more integrative; it took the minimalism of Mid-Century Modern and dressed it up with color and patterns; it embraced many architectural styles, cultures and whimsical features.

Postmodern architects Philip Johnson, Michael Graves and Charles Moore incorporated neoclassical designs into their work; Terry Farrell combined Aztec design with green glazing in London; James Stirling threw pink-painted metal pipes against travertine in Stuttgart; Arata Isozaki combined high-tech with traditional design elements.

In a recent CNN piece, Owen Hopkins, a senior curator at Sir John Sloane’s Museum and author of Architecture and Freedom: Searching for Agency in a Changing World, posited that, “While Modernism had sought to draw a line under the past, Postmodernism used the past as a quarry of sources, references and quotations, deploying them with wit, irony and irreverence. After decades of being mute, architecture was allowed to speak again through color, ornament, decoration.”  Hopkins firmly believes that Postmodernism is back (assuming it ever really went away) and that it continues to inspire the architects of today.

Designer Adam Nathanial Furman agreed with this position in a recent interview with Dezeen. A founder of the Postmodern Society, Furman is an expert on late-20th-century style and just authored a book with Terry Farrell – the architect responsible for several postmodernist icons built in the 1980s. Their book, Revisiting Postmodernism, showcases some recent examples of the postmodern resurgence such as MVRDV’s market hall in Rotterdamn (2014).

Market Hall in Rotterdamn (2014)

While we ponder why postmodern architecture is making a comeback (could it be the chaotic, complex, global nature of the design world today?), the following is a look at some classic examples of Postmodern design, both past and present.

SIS Building in London. Photo: George Rex

 

 

 

 

 

 

Architect Terry Farrell’s SIS building in London (1994), which is also known as the MI6 building, may be the pinnacle of British postmodernism.  Its Mayan and Aztec temple design creates a layered fortress and incorporates 60 open-air terraces into its design – as well as triple-glazed windows and buttressed protection against bombs.

Modernism meets ancient Mediterranean architecture at the Clos Pegase Winery in Napa Valley, California, designed by Michael Graves. Another of his creations, the Hyatt Regency Fukuoka in Japan, embraces a vast pyramid structure, is naturally lit from above, and encircled by a rotunda of hotel rooms.

Clos Pegase Winery in Napa, California and the Hyatt Regency Fukuoka in Japan

The Kreeger Art Musuem in Washington DC (1963) by Philip Johnson with Richard Foster  was previously a residence. It is located in a wooded park of over five acres, with layered arches inspired by a Roman aqueduct design.

Kreeger Art Museum in Washington D.C. Photo: Payton Chung

Binoculars Building by Frank Gehry –Venice, Los Angeles (1991). Photo: Grant Mudford

 

 

 

 

 

 


STO Introduces Ultra-Compact TurboStick Mini

Sto's popular Turbostick is now available in an ultra-lightweight, ultra-compact mini-version.

Sto Corp. has recently introduced Sto TurboStick® Mini, an ultra-lightweight, ultra-compact adhesive delivery system with terrific advantages over traditional cement-based adhesives. The Mini version of TurboStick now gives applicators a choice of two convenient sizes – either cartridge or cylinder — when applying Sto’s ready-to-use, single component adhesive for installing insulation boards in exterior wall claddings like StoTherm ci and ci XPS.

Unlike more traditional cementitious adhesives, Sto TurboStick doesn’t require mixing or extended drying time. It goes on easier, cures in just two hours, and generally outperforms other adhesive systems. It is also lightweight – so no heavy lifting is required to hoist it onto scaffolding; applicators simply screw in the hose and squeeze the trigger.

The Sto TurboStick Mini is easy to use and offers the fastest application of any adhesive, cutting the cure time from a full day to just a single hour. The Sto TurboStick Mini cartridge weighs just 26.3 oz. and covers 110 – 130 square feet of wall surface.

In addition to saving time, using Sto TurboStick can also save money. By cutting the cure time from a full day to two hours, and taking less time to stage materials, projects can finish faster, saving on labor costs. And with the Mini version providing additional convenience and efficiency, Turbostick offers the fastest application time of any PU-foam adhesive. Click here for StoTurbostick brochure 2018


New Improved StoGuard® Simplfies Application

New improved StoGuard® simplfies application for fluid-applied air and moisture barrier systems.

StoGuard has always been a preferred fluid-applied air and moisture barrier system for applicators. It can be used with any cladding and forms a fully-adhered seamless air and moisture barrier on an exterior wall. It ensures protection against moisture intrusion and unwanted air movement and offers a better way to meet today’s code requirements.

The new, improved StoGuard combines the benefits of Sto’s RapidGuard and RapidFill/RapidSeal, merging two products into one, streamlining this popular legacy product line and making for a simpler application process.

As building codes continue to become more complex, applicators need air moisture barrier systems such as StoGuard® that are quick and easy to install while still providing excellent performance and durability over the lifetime of the building. A water-based air and moisture barrier system, StoGuard is ideal for all types of construction, containing liquid membranes that can be applied either by roller or airless sprayer. This increases the speed of application on the wall while simplifying integration with other wall assembly components.

Common building wrap systems rely on lapping, taping, and cutting of materials to create a moisture barrier. Even when properly applied, these systems are prone to tearing and loss of adhesion, which can lead to costly callbacks or even long-term system failure. Since StoGuard systems are fully adhered to the substrate — creating a seamless, monolithic barrier — they are more effective, longer-lasting, and can be installed in a fraction of the time required to properly install a building wrap. All of these features make for a high-performance product that can save both time and money. For more information, download the StoGuard System Sales Sheet.


Sto Panel Used for Student Housing at Rowan University

StoPanel

This large-scale student housing project at Rowan University in N.J. relied on StoPanel to meet an aggressive construction schedule.

Rowan University in New Jersey needed housing to accommodate its rapidly expanding student body and partnered with the nearby town of Glassboro (just outside Philadelphia) to construct a six-story residential building.

The proposed structure, called The Penthouse, was a large L-shaped building with 500,000 square feet of floor space and approximately 200,000 SF of exterior wall. While designed mainly for student housing, there was also mixed-use space on the first floor. The project had to go up swiftly in order to house incoming students that same year, so the construction schedule was exceptionally aggressive.

The owner, developer and general contractor, Nexus Properties concluded that the only way they would come close to meeting the desired timeline for completion was by using prefab panels for the walls. Even with that, it was going to be tight.

Having worked with Jersey Panel for over 20 years, they enlisted their help. StoPanel was then brought onto the team. The offsite construction plans called for StoPanel Classic, a lightweight prefabricated panel that is both energy efficient and durable, with continuous insulation and the StoGuard air and moisture barrier forming the core of the system.  Sto’s versatile choice of finishes would then allow for almost any design aesthetic that was envisioned.

Nexus ultimately specified StoPanel Brick ci, a lightweight, energy-efficient prefabricated exterior wall panel, incorporating EPS insulation and StoGuard. It weighed a fraction of conventional thick brick and gave the Rowan buildings an updated traditional look. The final touch was Stolit® Lotusan,®  a ready-mixed, hydrophobic exterior textured finish designed to resist dirt pick-up and keep the walls clean and attractive. To achieve a very detailed exterior look, three contrasting finish materials were used – brick, cast stone and texture

Essentially the entire outside wall structure was completed in-house, then brought to the jobsite by truck, lifted into place with a crane, then bolted to the structural framing.  “The beauty of prefab is that the exterior goes up quickly,” said Art Baruffi Jr, VP Project Management for Jersey Panel, “And the interior can get started at almost the same time.” The average installation, he reports, was 10 panels a day, with each building requiring an average of about 65 panels.  “We didn’t need carpenters, plasterers and other related trades in the field since the walls were ready to go up when they arrived, and we worked with a crew of just five or six people to install them.”

The owners were so pleased with the new building, including the quality panels and the waterproofing details, they engaged the same StoPanel Technology team and their affiliate, Jersey Panel Corp. for the next six buildings they constructed. Between 2014 and 2018, seven buildings comprising more than 450,000 square feet and 1,500 wall panels were constructed in three phases.

Everyone involved in the process understood that panelization as a construction methodology offered distinct advantages: The buildings could be enclosed before it got cold, and the interior could then be finished. Working on the final six buildings almost simultaneously, they were able to make the panels ahead of time and the installation got faster and easier with each structure. In this case, speed meant cost savings and added value.

Sto panels were the right choice for these projects and served the needs of the university and ultimately the city, by creating aesthetically-pleasing buildings with high energy efficiency and superior performance characteristics. The new buildings are a showcase on the campus that Rowan can now use to help attract more students.