Golden opportunities

NRCA recognizes outstanding roofing projects with its Gold Circle Awards

  • The Cargill Oilseed project was a challenge because the facility operates 24 hours per day, seven days per week.
Photo courtesy of D.C. Taylor Co., Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
  • The Robert F. Kennedy Justice Center required the removal and replacement of 51,000 square feet (4738 m²) of cast pavers and 72,000 square feet (6689 m²) of clay roofing tiles.
Photo courtesy of Wagner Roofing Co., Hyattsville, Md.
  • Copper fabrication was a significant part of the Murray Building Storefront project.
Photo courtesy of James Myers Co., Beltsville, Md.
  • The roofing work on the Sheppard and Enoch Pratt Hospital preserved the buildings' historical integrity.
Photo courtesy of Mason Dixon Building Maintenance, Stewartstown, Pa.

Every year since 1995, NRCA has recognized outstanding contributions to the roofing industry by honoring NRCA members who have met these standards of achievement in four categories: outstanding workmanship, innovative solutions, service to the community and service to the industry.

This year was no different as standout NRCA members received the 2005 Gold Circle Awards at NRCA's 118th Annual Convention in Orlando. Their hard work and well-deserved rewards reflected challenging projects, innovative solutions and community awareness. Following are descriptions of the winning projects.

Gold Circle Award category: Outstanding workmanship—low slope
Recipient: D.C. Taylor Co., Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Project: Cargill Oilseed, Minneapolis
Roof system types: Cold-applied liquid waterproofing membrane system

The Cargill Oilseed facility operates 24 hours per day, seven days per week. So when the facility needed a new roof because of continuing leaks, the production schedule was a significant concern.

D.C. Taylor was chosen to take on the challenging project because of its ability to develop a proposal that allowed for performing work without interrupting the facility's production schedule, as well as handling the plant's grain accumulation.


D.C. Taylor faced a myriad of challenges from the beginning. The facility constantly was in operation with Cargill Oilseed employees using the roof area as a work platform and soybean hulls continually being deposited on the roof surface during roof system installation.

"The roof surface had to be able to withstand foot traffic, provide a surface capable of supporting the tools and equipment of the service personnel, and be capable of allowing for cleaning of debris resulting from overflow of production materials," says Bill Taylor, chief executive officer and chairman of D.C. Taylor.

In addition, there were nearly 200 pipes, steel beams and other equipment penetrating the 6,100-square-foot (567-m²) roof area, and the company had to figure out how to work around these obstacles.

Time also was an issue. D.C. Taylor was to install a Kemperol cold-applied liquid waterproofing membrane system, which required precision. The company had only 20 minutes to apply the resin-based material after the resin was mixed because if the resin cured, it would not be workable.

The process

The Cargill Oilseed facility project included the removal of the existing asphalt roofing materials; substrate and penetration preparation; concrete deck repair; surface priming and Kemperol membrane installation; and application of an aggregate surfacing.

Kemper System Inc., Teaneck, N.J., provided a three-day training session for D.C. Taylor employees before the installation began. The Kemperol cold-applied liquid waterproofing membrane system had a two-component resin that cured quickly. The fast-working resin helped curb the problems of soybean hull deposition.

The installation of the waterproofing membrane involved application of the resin to the roof surface to be flashed; wrapping fleece material embedded in the resin; and smoothing the surface with a brush. This process was repeated more than 200 times, and the company was given a five-day window by Kemper System to complete the steps for the Kemperol system once installation on a roof section began because of environmental conditions.


Taylor says winning the award was especially significant for the crew that performed the work.

"This type of recognition is important to those crew members who worked hard and concentrated on doing an excellent job for our client," he says. "We get recognized by owners and co-workers every day. However, it is rare to be recognized by our peers, and for this, we are grateful."

Gold Circle Award category: Outstanding workmanship—steep slope
Recipient: Wagner Roofing Co., Hyattsville, Md.
Project: Robert F. Kennedy Justice Center, Washington, D.C.
Roof system types: Clay roof tile system and concrete pavers

The Robert F. Kennedy Justice Center is one of the many pieces of valuable history in downtown Washington, D.C. Therefore, when a restoration project was planned for the building, it needed to be handled in a delicate manner.

The project required the removal, repair and replacement of about 225 large and 156 smaller antifixae tiles, which are ornamental blocks on the edge of a roof that conceal the ends of tiles or roll joints, as well as the removal and replacement of 51,000 square feet (4738 m²) of cast pavers and 72,000 square feet (6689 m²) of clay roofing tiles.

"This was an unusual job in that the tile roof did not leak, but the fastening system had failed, causing a dangerous situation—falling roof tile and antifixae tile," says Chuck Wagner, president of Wagner Roofing.

Probably the biggest challenge of the restoration project was trying to create new products that closely would resemble the existing tile. Wagner Roofing took on this challenge.

Getting crafty

The project's delicate nature required the creation of mock-ups that had to be approved by the General Services Administration (GSA) before work began. The existing pavers on the building's roof were made of clay tile cemented to concrete pavers. Because of cost considerations, it was decided the original tiles would be replaced with concrete cast pavers that matched the color and texture of the originals.

Wagner Roofing then created a mock-up displaying the paver installation and pattern. The company also had to work with a specialty company to find a method for carefully removing and restoring the terra-cotta antifixae tiles. Training sessions produced full mock-ups of the antifixae tile repairs to determine the best method. The company created a detailed mock-up of the clay pan tile layout, as well.

In addition to the extensive pre-project preparation, the project manager kept a detailed weekly schedule that projected six weeks of work and had a precise drawing that displayed the work that would be done each day.

The company also had to create custom-made metal molds to reinforce the antifixae tile, replace the damaged webs and then hold the composite that was being used.

Safety precautions

Wagner Roofing developed a customized safety plan to cater to the project's unique restoration. Because of the building's strategic downtown location in the Federal Triangle, between the White House and the Capitol, the company had to consider the presence of pedestrian and vehicular traffic. Therefore, many specific safety precautions were established, especially because the building is a government building. The project involved weekly compliance inspections by an independent safety consultant for the first three weeks; biweekly inspections for the next two months; and monthly inspections until project completion.

"The fact that the attorney general occupied the building—including some of the Secret Service and FBI—while we did our work made it an extremely sensitive area," Wagner says. "And when we started the job in April 2003, post-Sept. 11 security was at an all-time high, especially at the Department of Justice. Getting enough workers cleared was a nightmare."

In addition, a falling-debris system was developed for the eight-story building, including the installation of debris netting. The company also erected scaffolding with a 42-inch- (1069-mm-) wide work deck to the roof line and guardrails, toe boards and netting on the underside.

The scaffolding situation was unusual because it straddled skylights and only could use two legs. Scaffolding could not be secured to the building because of its historical significance, and the only way the other side of the scaffolding could be anchored to the building was by using pressure ties. A plan was developed to fasten the scaffolding without disturbing the building's exterior.

Successful preservation

In the end, the detailed work was worth it. GSA praised and approved the project, which Wagner Roofing completed one month ahead of schedule and with no accidents or injuries.

"Wagner Roofing being acknowledged by peers in a national setting is as good as it gets," Wagner says. "I only wish the first two generations of our 91-year-old family-owned company could have been there to share in the recognition they made possible."

Gold Circle Award category: Innovative solutions: new construction
Recipient: Chadwick Technology Pty. Ltd., Forestville, Australia
Project: Second Bangkok International Airport, Bangkok, Thailand
Roof system types: Aluminum standing-seam roof system

Roofing work for the new Second Bangkok International Airport was a challenge from the beginning. The work area for the project included about 970,000 square feet (90113 m²), and the installation required a unique approach.

Fortunately, Chadwick Technology exists to take on such complex jobs and had been a part of many major contracts in Australia and Southeast Asia. The company rose to the challenge and was involved in every aspect of the project, including design, testing, fabrication, transportation, and installation of the roof system and sun-shading system for the airport's main terminal building.

Extra space

Designing and engineering the composite roof and sun-shading system took about six months and included nearly 800 detailed drawings, resulting in unique approaches to the project.

Because of the large size of the project's components and the challenge of transporting the large components, Chadwick Technology built a 108,000-square-foot (10033-m²) on-site factory for fabrication and assembly of most of the roof and secondary components. The work in the factory included steel fabrication, spray painting, roof system assembly, skylight assembly, louver fabrication and cladding.

"Our solution of on-site fabrication of the major roof components was revolutionary and involved considerable expenditure on an on-site production facility," says Bill Mansell, managing director for Chadwick Technology.

The preassembled materials were transported to the building with special trailers constructed to handle large modules and were designed to protect the modules as they were being transported. The components then were lifted into final position with special cranes at the site.

More than 500 workers labored in the factory and on the project site.


Installation involved a composite roof system with a finished acoustic ceiling and aluminum standing-seam roof; stainless-steel drainage system; stainless-steel flashings and trims; skylight system; and louver sun-shading system.

The project also included secondary structural steel work above the main roof area, and trellis bases, towers and trusses were installed after secondary trusses were put in their final positions. About 1,312 louver units were installed to the secondary lattice steelwork. Sun louvers were framed with structural steel ribs and clad with aluminum.

The roof system was roll-formed aluminum over rockwool insulation. A structural ceiling system supported the roof system and provided the finished interior ceiling for the building. The preassembled roof sections were about 30 feet by 26 feet (9 m by 8 m) with a weight of about 4.9 tons (4 Mg). The stainless-steel gutter system was more than 23,000 feet (7000 m) long.

Working together

Chadwick Technology's temporary factory no longer stands, but its innovative work will remain for years to come.

"This was a major team effort," Mansell says. "We specialize in projects of unique construction, and we have had the pleasure of winning this prestigious award on six occasions. Management and staff think the industry's recognition of our effort to achieve excellence in roofing technology is a considerable honor."

Gold Circle Award category: Innovative solutions: reroofing
Recipient: James Myers Co., Beltsville, Md.
Project: Murray Building Storefront, Washington, D.C.
Roof system types: Radius flat-seam copper roof system

Detailed ornamentation is a key element of many historic buildings. The Murray Building Storefront in Washington, D.C., is one of those buildings, boasting an original ornamental copper façade that does not offer easy imitation.James Myers Co. was chosen to reroof the historic building and restore the roof system to its original glory.

History revisited

James Myers Co. approached the project carefully, and an architect who specializes in historic buildings produced drawings based on photographs of the building's storefront from the early 1900s.

Copper fabrication was a significant part of the project, and the pre-fabrication process included measurements based on shop drawings from other subcontractors, as well as exact measurements taken from the field. The fact that fasteners needed to be concealed for this project also had to be considered. In addition, because the sheet metal was custom-made, each piece had its own dimensions.

"We were working with all the ornamental pieces you don't get to work with every day," says Chris Daniell, project manager for James Myers Co. "Each shop-fabricated piece was custom-measured, and if it had been as little as 1/16 of an inch (1.6 mm) off, there would have been major re-fabrications. This was a job that you could not get just anyone to do. James Myers Co. would not have been able to do this job without the special skills of the people involved."


The reroofing involved the installation of 16- and 20-ounce radius flat-seam copper roof systems; straight and radius copper cornice and fascia; and wall panels and transom frames.

The project was filled with unique details, including hanging pendant frames with ornamental inserts; curved Corinthian columns; pilasters; ogee mullion and moldings; hemispherical balls; window frames with stop beads; and ornamental shell and eagle.

Some of the most challenging aspects of the job were figuring out how to do the work without the fasteners showing, as well as minimizing the seams to make them visible in as few pieces as possible.


"Winning this award is a proud moment for us," Daniell says. "We focus on achieving a high level of quality craftsmanship from all our workers, but it often is hard to show that depth of quality with just an average roof system. This project gave us the opportunity to show the world the meticulous craftsmanship in which we take pride."

Gold Circle Award category: Innovative solutions: reroofing
Recipient: Mason Dixon Building Maintenance, Stewartstown, Pa.
Project: Sheppard and Enoch Pratt Hospital, Baltimore
Roof system types: Slate roof system

The buildings on the Sheppard and Enoch Pratt Hospital campus stand proud as examples of Victorian architecture that house the labors of mental health care and research. Mansard roofs of Peach Bottom slate from the 1880s top the hospital buildings.

However, a few years ago, the roof systems' age began to show. Corrosion began to affect the valleys and fasteners on the slate roof systems, causing leaks and slate fallout. The price of slate was too costly for the hospital, and the only other options were to replace the roof with a less expensive material that would hurt the buildings' historical value or save the existing slate roof system.

The hospital opted for saving the slate, and planned to do so by using Mason Dixon Building Maintenance and the Slate Savers system.


Mason Dixon Building Maintenance was asked to salvage about 70,000 square feet (6503 m²) of slate, as well as the buildings' valleys and built-up roof systems. The valleys and other components that carry rain were lined with a reinforced two-component polymer, and a fluid-applied reinforced rubber roof system was installed on the built-up roof systems.

The Slate Savers grouting process, which uses adhesion to protect and waterproof, was key to the preservation. A highly refined polymer is injected through a gasket, which forces the polymer into voids on the roof. Now acting as grout, the polymer offers adhesion and allows thermal dimensional changes within each individual piece of slate. This is said to prevent the natural grain splitting caused by exposed and aged slate.

The grout also provides strength, bonding each piece of slate to six adjoining pieces of slate so they share each other's strength. Therefore, the individual pieces of slate are transformed into a membrane functioning as a whole.


The Slate Savers system appeared to be a good choice for the hospital, preserving the historical integrity and providing some additional benefits, as well.

The distribution of holding power through the properly functioning fasteners has allowed widespread wind-uplift resistance for the roof system, and slate fallout has been eliminated. In addition, the grout has sealed entry points, protecting against air intrusion while allowing permeation of moisture vapor, therefore eliminating reverse condensation.

In the end, Mason Dixon Building Maintenance came away from the project with confidence that the roof system will help preserve the historic hospital building for many more years.

The entries submitted for the 2005 Gold Circle Awards were found to be more than worthy as successful and unique projects. NRCA eagerly will await the same participation for the 2006 Gold Circle Awards, which will be presented during NRCA's 119th Annual Convention in Las Vegas, Feb. 14-17, 2006.

For more information about NRCA's Gold Circle Awards, click here, or contact Chrystine Hanus, NRCA's executive assistant, at (847) 299-9070, Ext. 7522, or

Krista Reisdorf is associate editor of Professional Roofing magazine.


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