A ‘Cool’ Roof for the Olympic Games

Feb. 13, 2002
In anticipation of the 2002 Winter Games, Salt Lake City has been erecting buildings to host the various events. On every building, of course, is a roof – and that’s how Sarnafil, Canton, MA, became involved with the Olympics.For the ice skating events, the city proposed to construct an Olympic Ice Oval, also known as Oquirrh Park, with a base of concrete that expands and contracts with perfect uniformity. Any irregularity in the concrete could cause a crack, which would give the Olympic speed skaters a less than smooth sheet of ice on which to compete. To create the perfect base, it was imperative the concrete remain dry – which is why the roof of the Ice Oval played an important role in the construction of the building.Layton Construction, the contractor on the building project, brought on Clark’s Quality Roofing, a Sarnafil Elite Contractor, to install the roofing system. Because the roof, which is constructed like a suspension bridge, can deflect up to 18 inches when the wind blows or when it’s covered with snow, metal and built-up roofing systems were out of the question. Instead, a single-ply roofing system was needed to meet the construction specifications. The solution was Sarnafil’s S327, a mechanically attached, reinforced thermoplastic membrane system, over two layers of isocyanurate insulation totaling three inches. Sarnafil offered the system performance the building owner needed, together with the peace of mind of a roofing membrane with over 35 years of proven performance history.Additionally, the color of the roof was more than an aesthetic choice. For the Olympic Speed Skating Oval to be designated a LEED-rated building by the U.S. Green Building Council, the roof needed to remain cool in hot weather. The LEED (“Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design”) rating system evaluates environmental performance from a whole building perspective over a building’s life-cycle, providing a definitive standard for what constitutes a “green building.” At the same time, the color of the roof had to be conducive to logos. For these reasons, Sarnafil’s EnergySmart® white roofing membrane was selected – and the Ice Oval became one of only 19 buildings worldwide with a LEED certification.

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