CASE STUDY OVERVIEW
In the fall of 2020, TEMA Roofing had the opportunity to work with the Charles Schwab Data Center, located in Richfield, OH. Charles Schwab was looking to replace their building’s failing roofing system while staying within a tight timeframe for replacement, and TEMA Roofing was the answer.
TEMA’s design-build process made it possible to complete the project quickly, with one single contract, while also addressing a heightened need for cleanliness due to COVID and the building itself being a data center. Circumventing the traditional competitive bidding process, combined with TEMA’s extensive commercial roofing experience and streamlined capabilities, allowed the entire construction process to staywithin the allotted two-month timeframe, and the scope of work was communicated clearly from the onset.
Charles Schwab’s small window of time for project completion was two fold. Not only was the current roofing system leaking and causing issues inside the building, but Charles Schwab was also in the process of an interior remodel (and wanted to make sure that the newly refurbished interior was covered by a roofing system that could be trusted).
Charles Schwab contacted TEMA Roofing to discuss the possibility of working together to complete their re-roofing project before the end of 2020. The current roofing system, a 45 mil EPDM rock ballasted roof, was leaking heavily and needed to be replaced quickly.
Additionally, due to COVID-related precautions and the building being a data center, the project was unique in that the chosen roofing company would not be able to access the roof from inside the property. Scaffolding would need to be set up around the exterior of the building so that debris and roofing professionals weren’t going inside the building.
Charles Schwab wanted an experienced commercial roofing contractor that could utilize the design-build method, as opposed to the traditional design-bid-build process, to efficiently complete the project and work directly with their design firm, GPD Group.
Design-Build vs. Design-Bid-Build for Construction Projects
The design-build method has gained a significant amount of traction within the commercial construction industry over the past few decades, due in part to its cost savings and streamlined project delivery.
In fact, The Design Build Institute of America (DBIA) reports that the design-build approach is “sweeping the nation” and is the “fastest-growing, most popular method used to deliver construction projects in America.”
The design-build project delivery method is useful for its ability to speed up delivery. That time savings is due in part to design-build’s efficient project management—change orders are anticipated from the beginning and there is one single point of contact for the customer. (It essentially brings value engineering to the table, providing a systematic, organized approach while offering suggestions for alternatives as the need arises.)
Design-build is an effective means of streamlining the commercial roofing experience:
- It reduces paperwork
- It clarifies responsibilities
- It ensures all work is completed on a precise timetable
- It eliminates delays
In the long run, design-build firms, like TEMA Roofing, are more cost effective than traditional design-bid-build contractors because design-build provides customers with a project team focused on customer success!
The Charles Schwab project presented two main issues that needed to be addressed: the roof was past its life expectancy and needed to be replaced; the customer needed to complete the project within a shortened construction timeframe, due to employees returning back to work and the interior of the building being remodeled.
Tight Timeframe for Project Delivery
Not only was the Charles Schwab data center experiencing heavy roof leaks, but the customer also wanted to complete exterior and interior renovations before employees returned to the building as COVID restrictions began to lift.
Charles Schwab understood that having a design-build contract would expedite repairs and that they would avoid the typical selection process by not putting the project out to bid. Design-build’s streamlined construction phase also coincided well with the completion of the building’s interior renovations (so that nothing inside would be compromised by a leaking, old roof).
Design-Build Project with Special Precautions
The onset of the COVID pandemic brought with it a need for unprecedented precautions, not only in regard to cleanliness and disinfecting, but also for social distancing and minimizing person-to-person contact.
To that end, it was also highly important to keep dust and debris at an absolute minimum, since the building itself was the data center for the entire Charles Schwab organization.
After assessing the client’s needs and the engineering firm’s scope of work, TEMA Roofing installed a 60mil Firestone white EPDM roofing system with 20-year manufacturer warranty.
What is EPDM Rubber Roofing?
EPDM roofing is a time-tested roofing solution that checks all the boxes for a business’s needs while also being easy on the eye. EPDM roofs are highly popular with businesses in need of low-slope commercial roofing and offer two options: a black membrane (which is the most common) and a white membrane variant that has its own special layer on top made out of titanium dioxide (used to reflect the UV rays).
EPDM is widely recognized within the commercial roofing industry to be highly cost-effective while having a long life expectancy, being easy to install and environmentally friendly.
In October of 2020, TEMA began to remove the failing roof and worked in tandem with GDP Group to design and install a roofing system that Charles Schwab could trust.
Design-Build Team Streamlines Construction Services
The design-build approach—a single-source delivery system-–it isn’t just faster, it’s better. With design-build, the designer and the builder are on the same team.
It eliminates the middleman, reduces costs, expedites service and results in a better overall experience.
TEMA worked directly with GDP Group, headquartered in Akron, OH, to complete the Charles Schwab data center’s design-build project within scope and requested timeframe. Like they say, teamwork makes the dream work!
GDP’s design service team members were responsible for the project’s design work: putting together drawings for permitting purposes and working in concert with TEMA to specify and design the new roofing system.
EPDM Roofing with a 20-Year Warranty
The white Firestone 60mil EPDM roof that was installed included a 20-year manufacturer’s warranty, which helps to deliver peace of mind when investing in a new roofing asset. Firestone’s EPDM rubber compound is considered the industry’s premium-grade roofing membrane and offers durability, flexibility and UV resistance.
The 20-year Firestone Red Shield Limited Warranty offers material and labor coverage with comprehensive, no-dollar limit liability; “edge-to-edge” system coverage including membrane, insulation and metal; and, coverage that is transferable from owner-to-owner.
As part of the initial discovery and research, TEMA also noted that the building’s lightning protection was no longer up to code. That particular construction cost was rolled into the overall project cost, and a new lightning protection cable system that incorporated new lightning rod bases, rods and a grounding system was installed to meet code requirements.
To address the aggressive project timeframe, TEMA Roofing worked diligently to recognize and address the customer’s unique needs: adding COVID-related safety and health precautions, installing scaffolding to access the building’s roof from the outside, and reducing the number of subcontractors on the project. That type of progressive planning and unparalleled teamwork kept the project on track and within budget throughout the planning and design phase and into construction and completion.
TEMA Roofing’s Holistic Approach to Commercial Roofing
In addition to having a design-build construction focus, TEMA Roofing also works diligently to establish long term relationships with customers. Trust is essentially and plays a vital role in the longevity of a business relationship.
So, in working with the Charles Schwab data center, TEMA approached the project from a holistic perspective that kept the client informed:
- Weekly progress reports
- A site-specific safety plan
- Regular meetings
- Setup Charles Schwab’s client portal (which includes all project documents, along with specs, images, etc.)
- Put a maintenance agreement in place to service the roof going forward to make sure that the Firestone warranty remains intact
Commercial roof installation with TEMA Roofing means a job done right. What is a design-build project and how do those objectives equate to a better overall product?
Design-build means you have access to TEMA’s reliable, knowledgeable, union workforce.
Design-build means your entire project will be managed by a single entity, from start to finish, streamlining the build process and eliminating mistakes/oversights.
Design-build eliminates delays, procurement, separate contracts and overspending.
In the end, TEMA Roofing safely delivered a superior product while troubleshooting special requirements and keeping the customer fully informed. From start to finish, the design-build construction method kept Charles Schwab’s project on time and within budget.
Location: Richfield, OH – Charles Schwab Data Center
Date: October 2020 – Dec 2020
Existing Roof: 45 mil EPDM rock ballasted roof
Material Used: 60 mil white EPDM
Coverage: 25,200 sq ft
Solution: TEMA Roofing utilized its design-bid approach, following GDP’s specified, approved design and completed the entire project within the customer’s tight timeframe for replacement.