November 2009
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Kirkwood United Methodist Church in Kirkwood, Mo., is a dramatic structure. Its 85-foot height, distinctive bell shape and long, steep, shingle roof make it a prominent structure in the community, which features many historical homes.

Old Style Roofing Co., Fenton, Mo., was chosen to remove the 45-year-old roof system's cracked shingles and install 140 squares of InSpire™ Roofing Products' composite slate in slate grey, charcoal grey, red cedar and forest green over a new 3-inch vented nail base. The company also installed new copper gutters and brass snow guards.

With a length of 140 feet and rafter length of more than 50 feet, replacing the church's roof system was a challenge. The complicated installation required the company to take some unique steps.

"We actually attached ladders to the roof deck with walk boards stretched between and used an aerial lift for some of the installation," says Old Style Roofing Superintendent Kirk Bregg. "We also devised a ramp system to transport roofing materials up and over the snow guards."

Bill Broeker Sr., owner of Old Style Roofing, says the roof's size made it one of the most unusual projects his company has tackled.

"We've performed work on roofs that steep but not that big," Broeker says. "This is one of the more difficult roof systems I've installed in more than 40 years of experience—it was not a job for a faint-hearted man."

InSpire Inflex™ tiles were chosen for the project because they were pre-curved.

"It saved on labor," says Bill Broeker Jr., vice president of Old Style Roofing. "It probably saved 20 percent just on shuffling and handling before installation. When slate tiles come out of the mold like that, it's the best way to do it. If they're not pre-arched and you bend them on site, they often don't stay. With the InSpire tiles, we didn't have to worry about having to make sure each one was arched."

Broeker Sr. says the new roof system fits well with the community and its historical homes.

"The importance of a roof is overlooked quite a bit, especially in a building of this nature," Broeker Sr. says. "The roof is everything regarding the appearance of this building."

He says everyone is pleased with the roof's appearance.

"InSpire tiles transformed the building and made it look 110 percent better," Broeker Sr. says. "The whole building is essentially roof, and it really improved the appearance. The people at the church are just amazed. They really love it."

To submit a photo for Close-up, e-mail professionalroofing@professionalroofing.net or mail a photo to Professional Roofing Attn.: Close-up, 10255 W. Higgins Road, Suite 600, Rosemont, IL 60018. Submittals should include a photo, as well as a description or background for the photo. A $50 gift card will be awarded for the photo that is chosen to be featured in Close-up.



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Additional photos of the Kirkwood United Methodist Church reroofing project



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