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Part 1: Go Beyond Minimum Requirements To Keep A Roof Resilent
August 2014 -
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"Resilient" in the context of buildings means "capable of withstanding shock without permanent deformation or rupture." For buildings, resiliency is the ability to withstand significant weather events and remain not only habitable and useful, but also optimally functional.
Resiliency is becoming the new performance metric for the built environment in the wake of recent natural disasters. Continued performance after a weather event is now a key objective.
From a roof-system perspective, the term "resiliency" is also becoming the new way to talk about durability and long-term performance. Indeed, it's a term that focuses the traditional notions of sustainability on longevity, functionality, and quality for the roofing industry.
When it comes to defining specifically what makes a resilient roof, one option is the RoofPoint program, from the Center for Environmental Innovation in Roofing. This is a rating system that provides a means for building owners and designers to select nonresidential roof systems based on long-term energy and environmental benefits. The characteristics and components that make up a resilient roof are found in the RoofPoint guidelines. RoofPoint includes guidelines for energy, material, and water management, as well as durability and life cycle management.
Wind resistance, impact resistance, daylighting, insulation, roof color, and rooftop energy productions are all elements of a resilient roof system. And these components and qualities stem from ideas of long-term performance. The roofing industry plays a big part in overall building resiliency because the roof is often the largest part of the building envelope. If the roof is damaged or blows off in a weather event, it's quite likely the building will be uninhabitable and, therefore, unusable after a storm. This is certainly true for single-story and low-rise buildings. And it's very likely true for multi-story buildings, whether office or a residential buildings. It is rather difficult to have a functional building that no longer has its roof.
Wind resistance and impact resistance are necessary for continued weatherproofing during and after a storm. Resilient roofs are often designed "above code." Model codes provide the minimum requirements for building design and construction. Recent events have shown this is not always prudent for resiliency. And, balancing cost and long-term performance is an important consideration as well.
The center for Environmental Innovation in Roofing has launched the RoofPoint Registered Professional (RRP) program to develop an industry-wide group of professionals who have demonstrated competency in the application of RoofPoint to evaluate roofing projects to be submitted for RoofPoint certification. RRPs may evaluate and score roofing projects in accordance with the credit requirements of the RoofPoint guideline and offer suggestions on how to meet or exceed any of the RoofPoint credits. In consideration of their achievement, RRPs will be recognized in a public database at the RoofPoint website and will receive discounts and expedited processing for the submission of RoofPoint projects.
To learn more about the RoofPoint Registered Professional program, go to roofpoint.com, select the "Become a RoofPoint Professional" tab, and download a copy of the RoofPoint professional program manual.
CEIR: Defining Resilience In Roofs
Part 2: Resilient Roof Systems Can Be Designed To Handle Higher Wind Speeds Than Codes Require
Part 3: Daylighting, Energy Production Are Among Energy Possibilities Of Resilient Roofs