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When Dikeakos and Cotter Architects (Vancouver, BC) started planning Park Place, a new luxury condominium and town home development destined to be one of the most prominent buildings in San Diego, they created a design with a strong Mission flavor that reflects the local architectural tradition. A key exterior feature of the 30-story building is a steep-sloped tile roof that covers the upper tower portion of the building where mechanical equipment and service rooms are housed. The use of a metal “tile panel” roofing system manufactured by Met-Tile, Inc. (Ontario, Calif.) provided the desired Mission look while overcoming weight, installation and safety concerns.

Met-Tile metal tile facsimile system was ideally suited for the Park Place Condominum located in San Diego, Calif.The original roof design specified Spanish tile roofing. As the building team prepared for construction, however, some concerns arose regarding the safety and practicality of tile roofing installed at a height of 300+ feet above ground. “Spanish tile weighs approximately 10 lb. per square foot,” explains Michael McConnell, an estimator for A-1 All American Roofing Co. (San Diego, Calif.), installation contractor for the Park Place tower roof. “If tiles were to break off during high winds and become airborne, they could pose a serious safety hazard.

“It would also have been extremely difficult to get 54,000 lb. of material up to the top of the structure; and given the very steep slope of the tower roof (10:12 pitch), it would have been very hard to keep the tile safely loaded on the building. Installation would also have been prohibitively time-consuming and costly because of the weight and size of the tiles,” McConnell notes.

A-1 felt that Met-Tile’s metal tile facsimile system would be ideally suited to the challenge. They provided product information and samples to the project owner, Bosa Development, for review by the entire building team. The change from Spanish tile to Met-Tile also had to be approved by the City of San Diego. The City agreed to the change after reviewing the information and being satisfied that Met-Tile would meet both aesthetic and safety considerations. The panels weigh only 1.25 lb. per square foot, a fraction the weight of the originally specified product.

To make sure the roof system would last for many years and remain watertight, the final design utilized a steel roof deck covered with ¾-inch thick fire-treated ACX plywood, fastened to the roof deck with stainless steel screws. After installing these components, A-1 installed a selfadhering SBS modified underlayment with a polyester skin. The Met-Tile system itself consists of 5,400 square feet of 26 GA Zincalume steel panels in 3-foot widths and lengths up to 7-feet.

There is also a hidden gutter two feet above the eave line. The gutter is lined with a thermoplastic olefin single ply membrane fully adhered with a solventbased adhesive. Around the entire perimeter of the building is a band of 22-GA standing seam copper roof panels installed.

Due to wind, height and handling concerns during installation, A-1 ordered no roof panels over 7 feet in length. Each individual 7-foot panel provided about as much coverage as 18 conventional tiles.

“We completed the job in approximately four weeks, even though we lost some time due to high winds. Though no roofing material would be easy to install under such adverse conditions, Met-Tile was certainly more manageable than conventional tile, which would have taken an estimated four months to install,” McConnell reports. Cost of the roofing system (including material, labor and engineering) was $18.15 per square feet. General contractor for the project was Bosa Development California, Inc. (San Diego). Building envelope consulting engineer was Spratt Emmanuel Engineering LTD (Vancouver, B.C.).

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