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What to Expect in Stadium Repair & Restoration Services

Local college teams, professional leagues, and many other major sports venues count on their stadiums to withstand the elements. These venues need to be constructed to protect the thousands of fans who pass through the concourse. Most fans won’t notice when a stadium needs repairs unless a team announces plans to remodel in the offseason. But stadium repairs are a necessity and happen all the time. 

A quick Google search of “stadium repair” lists hundreds of news articles related to current or future restoration projects across the United States. For example, Ohio State University spends about $2.5 million annually on maintenance at its football stadium, which its athletic department said addressed mainly “structural factors such as concrete repair and replacement.” 

Staying in Ohio, The Cleveland City Council approved $10 million in funding for FirstEnergy Stadium, where the Browns host football games, to replace a pedestrian ramp. The existing structure was determined to be “unsafe” due to safety concerns, as the current ramp is “rusted out” with “deteriorated concrete.” 

What should property owners and fans expect with stadium repairs and restoration? This article will delve into this issue and highlight some of the services available for stadium maintenance and repair projects.

What is Stadium Repair and Stadium Restoration?

Built using a combination of internal finished areas and external seating arrangements in the tread and riser areas, nearly all stadium construction involves concrete and masonry work.  Stadium structures depend on various expansion joints, sealant joints, waterproofing systems, and exposed traffic coatings to keep the structure watertight. This focus helps protect against inclement weather and the stress that concrete experiences when exposed to fluctuating hot and cold environments. 

Weather causes concrete expansion and contraction, and with constant use, areas like walkways, ramps, decks, and rafters often develop cracking, breaking, and rust if not properly maintained. All of the components that go into stadium construction require constant maintenance. If not, stadiums often need full-scale restoration projects. 

The Most Common Stadium Repairs & Restoration Projects

Depending on the size and type of stadium (open-air, domes, enclosed, multi-purpose, retractable), stadium repair and restoration projects can range in their complexity and cost. The most common projects are preventive maintenance of common areas with high traffic and fan use. 

Some typical projects that facility owners and managers include in their stadium repair and restoration efforts:

  • Structural Restrengthening: This includes concrete admixtures that enhance workability and durability for stadiums and arenas, cast-in-place concrete foundations, stadium bowl structures, and precast concrete elements.
  • Protecting Roof Systems: Leaking roofs aren’t just associated with residential buildings; they affect stadiums too. And when severe thunderstorms pass through, leaks can cause game delays or even worse, cancellations.
  • Joint Sealing: The most common area where leaks occur is at expansion joints, and unfortunately for stadium owners, these leaks cause the most damage-  affecting fans, vendors, and even players. It’s up to stadium owners to ensure quality joint sealing during initial construction, and handle regular maintenance to ensure that stadiums remain watertight during gameday. Water infiltration will cause serious damage, rapidly depreciating the value of your property. 
  • Seating Repair: Each game brings a new crowd of thousands of fans. The wear and tear from a season typically requires that stadium owners spend money repairing the concourse and seating areas. With all the foot traffic and weight passing through the stadium, owners must budget to ensure that their fans have safe and accessible seating arrangements.
  • New Features: Older stadiums often require facelifts or brand-new remodeling projects,  revamping stadiums to include scoreboards, new seating arrangements, accessible bathrooms, pedestrian ramps, and restaurant spaces. New concrete and maintenance are required to ensure these new areas remain safe for pedestrians.

The Varying Needs for Stadium Repairs & Restoration

Stadiums are constantly exposed to wear and tear due to natural weather patterns and everyday foot traffic of fans. The combination wears down the concrete’s strength over time and the structural durability of stadiums in the long run. Stadium maintenance is essential for preventing cracks, breaks, and other maintenance problems. 

Spectators should be able to remain safe while enjoying the game. Here are some of the many services companies can provide to help stadium owners maintain their properties.

Leak Repairs

Storms and high winds are more frequent than ever, and with improper flashing or installation, stadiums can sometimes get leaks. Water infiltration wreaks havoc on any sporting event, so it’s essential to find expert service professionals to prevent the worst before it happens.

Waterproofing Systems

Waterproofing refers to various construction methods to restrict moisture penetration in a structure. When it comes to stadiums, though, building owners need professional installation with premium products to prevent any embarrassing leaks on game day.

Joint Sealant Replacement

Does your stadium have the proper caulking? Probably not. 

Caulking keeps water and moisture out of your building. If caulking is old, your stadium is at risk for damage, turning into large-scale repairs when not addressed. To ensure the long-term protection of your venue, working with experienced professionals who understand the proper ways to seal structures against the elements is critical.

Water Repellent and Penetrating Sealers

Most every region in the United States experiences inclement weather, which adversely affects concrete structures. Waterproofing and sealing are critically important for protecting porous surfaces like walkways, ramps, and seating arrangements. 

Expanding the lifecycle of commercial buildings like stadiums requires adequate waterproofing to guard against temperature change, UV damage, shock and vibration, stains and colorations, and regular foot traffic.

Structural Repairs

The outside façade is the first thing people see when approaching a stadium. That is why building owners must maintain a beautiful exterior free from cracks, rust, and debris when their venue is open to the public. Materials such as concrete, stone, acrylic coatings, brick, and balconies might need structural repairs. Make sure to find an experienced service professional specializing in facade restoration.

Concrete Restoration and Repair

Repairing old and damaged concrete restores your stadium’s integrity and aesthetic beauty and ensures the structure is safe for your fans. Structural damage to concrete primarily occurs on slabs, balconies, walkways, parking garages, and the building’s exterior. If your stadium needs a facelift, get in touch with concrete restoration and repair companies that can restore it to its “structural best”.

Traffic Coatings

Protect pedestrians and cars in high-traffic areas with a specialized seal that prevents moisture and chemical intrusion. This protective sealant helps improve structural durability and the preventative maintenance also helps stadium owners reduce long-term repair and restoration costs.

Parking Structures

Cars add significant weight and contaminants to your building’s structure, causing corrosion, cracking, and staining. Car tires carry salt, oils, dirt, and engines leak oil, grease, and other chemicals. 

When these contaminants mix with your concrete parking structures, they corrode the steel, and cause debonding. Building owners cannot afford to have their parking garage out of service for long, so it’s crucial to partner with a company that knows how to improve the life expectancy of your garage.

Get More out of your Stadium with Valcourt 

Stadiums require constant and consisten maintenance to meet the structural integrity and safety requirements your guests deserve. Whether your venue hosts the next varsity game or the Rolling Stones, it is vital to maintain the long-term health of the structure to ensure it withstands the elements and foot traffic year-round. 

With stadium repair and restoration projects, building owners count on Valcourt Building Services for an array of services like waterproofing, structure repair, and restoration. With over 35 years of industry experience, it’s no wonder why thousands of customers depend on Valcourt each day for their stadium repair and restoration projects. Contact an expert at A1Orange today!

How Custom Elevator Interior Design Can Improve Your Building

People entering a multi-level building typically look for the closest elevator to them to get to their destination. Whether in a commercial building or a residential space, people notice elevators for their interior design, cleanliness, and functionality. 

Everyone has their own “memorable in all the wrong ways” elevator experience, whether it be a slow-running lift or a dirty interior. People notice the conditions of an elevator, in turn shaping their perception of the owners and their commitment to the building and those visiting it. 

An elevator is one of the most used features in a building, other than restrooms- another space judged by its design, cleanliness and function. 

Why Should I do a Custom Elevator Design?

When designing the cab interiors of elevators, building owners should consider the various customizable features and materials available. Custom elevator interiors can include repair, custom fabrication, and new construction. 

Each of these designs offer distinct advantages, and depend upon what option is best for your building and your budget. Prefabricated systems require less cost and elevator downtime, but offer fewer customizable materials and options. Interior decorating often includes customizable engraving services that can really make your elevator shine.

When is Elevator Interior Design or Remodeling Needed?

When prospective tenants, associates, or workers notice that your building’s elevators appear dingy, vandalized, cracked, or worn out, their appearance will leave an undeniable impression on how people conceptualize your building. Elevators set a visual tone of comfort. Just as a decorative window displays the quality of the products available at a store, a newly remodeled elevator showcases your building’s quality and mindfulness for aesthetics and functionality. 

What Services are Available for Custom Elevator Interior Design?

When deciding to partner with a professional elevator cab service provider, you will work with experts who will help design your elevator’s interior. There are many services available for you to choose from, each of which offers an opportunity to transform your elevator cab.

  • New Design: Update old electrical wiring, adhere to municipal building codes, and revamp your elevator cab’s interior. Choose from high-end materials to work with, including metal, glass, plastics, or stone. Consider art or media designs and create a calm and welcoming environment for your building.
  • Renovations: Change out dented wall panels, replace lighting and ceiling panels, and upgrade control paneling. A range of cosmetic changes will make your elevator more user-friendly and attractive.
  • Fabrication: Building owners should consider whether their elevator cabs would benefit the most from custom fabrication or pre-engineered designs. The installation process for elevator interiors depends upon what materials and options you choose. 
  • Custom Engraving: Make your elevator stand out with an engraving service for the lift’s interior walls, doors, floors, call plates, card readers, and floor indicators. There are a variety of options to choose from to give your elevators a distinctive flair!

While a functional elevator is important, consider that design choices should match the style of your building’s tenants and visitors. For example, a high-foot-traffic commercial building benefits from having an elevator display with local advertisements. Or perhaps a quiet residential building in the suburbs would benefit from a more straightforward but welcoming design that could be easier to maintain. 

Give your Elevator a Lift with The Valcourt Group

Building owners looking for help in remodeling or maintaining their elevator cabs turn to the industry experts, and there’s no company more experienced and qualified than The Valcourt Group. Valcourt specializes in providing a range of building services to property owners with office buildings, high-rises, parking garages, stadiums, hospitals, and apartment complexes. Valcourt offers their customers dedicated solutions. With over thirty-five years of industry experience, Valcourt can help bring your elevator’s interior designs to the next level. Contact The A1orange Group today!

What Are Post-Tension Slabs & Why Are They Used?

It’s no secret why builders use post-tensioning systems in their construction; these systems are critical to strengthening concrete used in modern large-scale building projects. The same argument applies to post-tension slabs—a method used when pouring the slab foundation in commercial or residential construction. This article further explores post-tension slabs and some of the advantages and challenges of their usage in construction projects. 

What are Post-Tension Slabs?

The concrete industry started experimenting with strategies and techniques to strengthen and reinforce concrete in the 1950s. The prestressing concept, now a standard in residential and commercial building construction, involves using a steel cable or tendon to squeeze and compress concrete before the concrete endures a structural load. As the construction industry continued refining its techniques to standardize prestressing, most builders eventually began using post-tensioning techniques for reinforced concrete slab foundations. The Federal Housing Administration officially endorsed the use of post-tensioned slabs in 1969, and the building method is now embraced and co-opted as the preferred method for builders.

Post-tensioned slabs contain a tendon, or steel cable, that runs crisscrossed throughout the center of the slab after the concrete has already hardened. As the poured concrete dries, the post-tensioned cables stretch and tighten, which applies a significant force to the concrete slab. This technique strengthens and compresses the concrete, which helps reduce cracking and structural instability caused by unstable soil conditions in marshes, swamps, and lake areas. The process helps residential homes and commercial buildings achieve greater load-bearing strength. Post-tension slabs are more durable and stable than traditional slabs that lack the reinforcement of steel cables.

Why Use Post-Tension Slabs?

Concrete slabs have inherent structural weaknesses; they are especially susceptible to expansion and contraction due to seasonal fluctuations and changing temperatures. Anyone that has experienced winter knows that thawing temperatures usually lead to potholes, broken water mains, and cracks in the pavement. Concrete slabs are no exception. The swelling and contraction of soils based on their contact with water is another element that adversely affects the integrity of concrete slabs. Poor and unstable soils found in Southwestern states and Mexico lead to issues with soil expansion, making it difficult for builders to lay concrete slabs.

Builders depend on post-tension slabs to reduce the risks of cracking, contraction, and soil expansion and strengthen the foundation’s structural integrity.

Post-Tension Slabs: Potential Challenges

Post-tension slabs are stronger than traditional concrete slabs; however, that does not necessarily mean a post-tension slab is without challenges. Read on to learn more about builders’ challenges when using post-tensioned slabs.

Long-Term Planning 

Post-tensioned slabs are an excellent foundation for a new structure, but builders must plan accordingly for proper drainage. Gutters, downspouts, roof pitches, and balconies redirect rainfall. Builders need to be aware of the location of drainage as it can seep into the foundation and lead to cracks.

Good Things Aren’t Cheap & Cheap Things Aren’t Good

Laying the foundation of a post-tension slab requires professional workers, quality materials, and expert knowledge to understand the job’s complexity. In the building and construction industry, it’s essential to research the service provider and contractors you partner with before signing a contract.

Check the Blueprints, Again

Since post-tension slabs require the addition of steel tendons to strengthen and reinforce the concrete, the tendons must precisely align as shown on the blueprints. Improper tendon locations can cause uplifting, as the tendon applies more force than the weight of the concrete. As a result, the concrete might be physically lifting the slab.

The Advantages of Post-Tension Slabs

Aside from producing crack-free tennis courts, smooth parking garages, and a secure foundation for someone’s new home, post-tension slabs offer builders an array of advantages compared to traditional concrete slabs. Here are a few of the major benefits.

Cost Savings

Post-tensioned slabs require less concrete than traditional ones, saving builders money. Post-tensioned slabs are an investment that helps homeowners reduce the risks of concrete contraction and cracks, which inevitably costs money to repair. That’s why post-tensioned slabs are an initial investment worth it in the long run.

Shed Some Weight

A lighter yet stronger slab of concrete allows builders to design their structure with less material and overall surface space, providing more space to build supporting pillars, walls, columns, and beams. Post-tensioned slabs are also thinner, giving builders more creative freedom when designing floors.

Minimize Risks

No matter how much planning goes into a construction project, things happen, and the idea for builders is to minimize risks. Post-tensioned slabs may help prevent cracks from forming, but concrete is not immune to the elements. The good news is that if cracks form on post-tensioned slabs, they are held together and do not spread as quickly as those on traditional foundation slabs. Therefore, post-tensioned slabs are a more durable solution.

Look to the Experts when it comes to Building Repair Services

Commercial and residential structures require rational planning and maintenance. Whether your building has a traditional concrete slab or a reinforced post-tensioned slab, building owners need to maintain the structure’s integrity. That’s why across the United States, owners and property managers rely on Valcourt as their trusted partner to protect their investments. Whether it’s waterproofing, restoration, or other commercial building services, Valcourt offers over 35 years of experience protecting properties from the elements. Contact A1Orange Building Services today!

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