Web Exclusive

Category Archives: Web Exclusive

Web Exclusive

Manufacturers Provide the Key to Coatings Specification

A professional is selecting paint for a project. Photo courtesy Sherwin-Williams

by Joe Kujawski

Today’s coatings are more specialized than ever, meeting the demands of various applications. It can be difficult to navigate product options, keeping in mind performance, substrate, volatile organic compound (VOC) regulations, green certifications, sustainability, and aesthetics. With so many different aspects coming into play, the process is complex.

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More Great Walls of Fire


Fire-rated curtain walls can prevent a fire from traveling to or from neighboring buildings without restricting visibility. Unlike gypsum, masonry, and other opaque fire-rated materials, this multi-functionality can bring fire and life safety goals in line with the aesthetic design intent where building codes deem the threat of fire is significant from adjacent construction.

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Great walls of fire

Fire-rated curtain walls can satisfy life safety requirements without sacrificing transparency. All images courtesy TGP

Glazed curtain walls are best known for their ability to visually integrate two otherwise separate spaces. Less talked about—though, perhaps more important—are curtain walls with the capability to retain visibility and access to daylight while standing guard against fire.

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Geosynthetics for new Chicago downtown park

Lightweight expanded polystyrene (EPS) geofoam forms landscape contours over an underground parking garage at Chicago’s Maggie Daley Park. Photo courtesy Insulfoam

The Chicago Park District will soon open a new 11-ha (28-acre) downtown park to complement its renowned Grant Park and Millennium Park. Visitors to Maggie Daley Park will enjoy a visually varied landscape with rolling hills, berms, and contours. What they might not realize is the park’s earthworks are not made of traditional soil fills, but of a geosynthetic material—expanded polystyrene (EPS) geofoam.

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Grant project follows lifecycle of urban wood

Urban lumber harvesting has emerged as an option for cities like Wisconsin.  Photos courtesy Kubala-Washatko Architects

In the October 2014 issue of The Construction Specifier, an article examined how urban lumber harvesting has emerged as an option for resources otherwise devastated by the emerald ash borer. It takes a particular look at how Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is becoming an important player in finding new opportunities for wood—carpentry, casework, and flooring included. This web piece takes the story further.

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