An SPF solution

West Roofing Systems reroofs the Ohio Turnpike Commission Administration Building

  • The Ohio Turnpike Commission Administration Building's facadePhoto courtesy of West Development Group, LaGrange, Ohio.
  • Work in progress on the administration buildingPhoto courtesy of West Development Group, LaGrange, Ohio.
  • The existing EPDM membrane was cut into sections and placed in West Development Group (WDG) EPDM recovery crates for transport to WDG's recycling facility.Photo courtesy of West Development Group, LaGrange, Ohio.
  • The roof after removal of the existing ballast and EPDM membranePhoto courtesy of West Development Group, LaGrange, Ohio.
  • The new SPF roof systemPhoto courtesy of West Development Group, LaGrange, Ohio.

The Ohio Turnpike—officially named the James W. Shocknessy Ohio Turnpike—is a 241-mile-long toll road running through northern Ohio. It is part of the U.S. Interstate Highway System and maintained by self-generated income.

The turnpike's history dates to 1949, when Ohio authorized the creation of the Ohio Turnpike Commission. The commission issued $326 million in revenue bonds to fund the turnpike's construction, which was Ohio's biggest construction project to date. Highway construction began Oct. 27, 1952, and was completed Oct. 1, 1955, with 10,000 workers on site during peak construction.

During 1956, 10 million vehicles used the Ohio Turnpike; by 2006, the number had risen to more than 51.7 million. The turnpike has become a great source of income for Ohio, and the Ohio Turnpike Commission, which administers and maintains the turnpike, continues to promote economic development by offering more convenience to turnpike users.

The Ohio Turnpike Commission Administration Building is located in Berea, Ohio, adjacent to the Ohio Turnpike. Early this year, the commission decided to reroof the building's south wing.

"The existing 15- to 16-year-old roof system had developed two persistent leaks, and the commission had budgeted to have it replaced," says Jack Moore, project engineer for West Roofing Systems Inc., LaGrange, Ohio. "We met the facilities engineer at a facilities maintenance expo in January. He indicated interest in our company and the products we use and invited us to prepare recommendations and proposals to correct the administration building's roofing needs."

West Roofing Systems was awarded the contract and began work on the building's roof system May 15.

Emphasis on recycling

The Ohio Turnpike Commission asked West Roofing Systems to develop a comprehensive long-term roofing solution that would provide energy savings, be as environmentally responsible as possible and allow for continued facility operations.

"The existing 6,000-square-foot roof system consisted of a metal B-type deck, average of 3-inch-thick tapered expanded polystyrene insulation system (up to 6 inches thick and 2 inches thick at the drains) and ballasted EPDM membrane," Moore says.

A three-person crew used an industrial vacuum truck to remove the roof's existing river rock ballast. The EPDM membrane was cut into manageable sections and placed in West Development Group (WDG) EPDM recovery crates for transport to WDG's recycling facility.

"The amount of EPDM that was recycled and diverted from a local landfill was about equal in volume to a full-size family sedan," Moore says.

After removing the ballast and membrane, an eight-person crew mechanically fastened a 1/2-inch-thick high-density wood fiberboard to the existing insulation system with coated screws and 3-inch galvanized square plates per FM 1-90 wind-uplift requirements. Next, crew members installed a 2 1/2-inch-thick layer of WDG 3009-3 Soy Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF) in two passes.

"Over each day's SPF application, we installed a 12-mil-thick base coat of WDG HSS 540 R2R™ Solvent-Free Silicone Coating containing 16.5 percent recycled EPDM," Moore says. "To complete the installation, we installed a 13-mil-thick topcoat of the same coating and broadcast 3M™ ceramic roofing granules at a rate of 40 pounds per square before the topcoat cured."

According to Moore, using the solvent-free silicone coating prevented the release of about 1,000 pounds of hydrocarbons into the environment and used more than 300 pounds, or 1,500 square feet, of recycled EPDM from WDG's recycling facility.

Special considerations

Because West Roofing Systems was performing work above occupied office space and the Ohio Turnpike Commission's board office, noise from roofing operations had to be kept to a minimum.

"We even had to stop work twice so board meetings would not be disrupted," Moore says.

Additionally, overspray was a concern because the building is surrounded by employee parking and immediately adjacent to the Ohio Turnpike.

"We used spray booths and wind screens to prevent the release of overspray," Moore says. "Fumes also were a major concern for employee welfare. Mechanical systems were shut down and coating application predicated by wind direction to prevent odors from entering the building.

"A sizable HVAC ductwork system was mounted low to the roof surface and recently had been insulated and painted for aesthetic purposes, so we had to protect the ductwork from overspray," Moore continues. "Also, because the clearance under the ductwork was too tight to be able to spray underneath, pre-made roof sections—coated SPF over wood fiberboard—were installed under the ductwork and tied into the remaining SPF roof system."

Safety also was a consideration during the project; West Roofing Systems used safety barricades at hoisting operation locations, installed warning lines and employed a safety monitor outside the warning lines.

Successful completion

West Roofing Systems completed work at the Ohio Turnpike Commission Administration Building May 21. Moore is pleased with the result and hopes to work with the commission again.

"The most rewarding part of the job was creating a new satisfied customer with significant long-term relationship potential with the state of Ohio," he says. "The SPF roof system provided a cost-effective, environmentally beneficial roofing solution not available with other roof system types."

Ashley St. John is Professional Roofing's associate editor.

Project name: Ohio Turnpike Commission Administration Building
Project location: Berea, Ohio
Project duration: May 15-21, 2009
Roof system type: Spray polyurethane foam with silicone coating
Roofing contractor: West Roofing Systems Inc., LaGrange, Ohio
Roofing materials manufacturer: West Development Group, LaGrange, Ohio


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