A building height restriction presented commercial builder APM Group with real problems over where to place mechanical plant in Epping Gardens, a $30 million retirement village complex the company is building at 25 Willandra Drive, Epping – until Pryda fabricator Sunbury Wall Frames and Trusses (SWFT) came up with an effective solution.
The fabricator had already been awarded the contract for the prefabricated timber wall frames and roof trusses on the first level of the two-storey 10,000 square-metre 148-bed facility begun in October last year and scheduled for completion in February 2018.
“The builder initially looked at reducing wall heights to achieve the desired outcome of placing mechanical plant in the roof,” explained SWFT managing director Danny Schneider. “However, the overall specifications were unable to be changed.”
In consultation with the architect, Point Health Architects and project engineer, Irwin Consult, SWFT wall frame manager Jason Judd and truss manager and engineer Brendan Schneider used the designer software Pryda Build – which enables a three-dimensional rotational computer image of the project – to solve the problem by moving a load bearing wall so the plant could be accommodated in the roof structure.
The company is well placed to deal with such issues because of the extensive in-house engineering expertise it can bring to bear on the problems.
Epping Gardens is a substantial project involving some 2000 lineal metres of wall frames and 1000 mono roof trusses (with box gutters at one end and parapet truss attachments at the other) of up to 10-metre spans and steel beams above the concrete ground floor construction.
Because of the application and customer expectations involved, SWFT has used GL10 glue laminated studs – possessing similar very stable characteristics to steel framing – imported from Europe for the 2.7-metre high wall frames.
Mr Schneider said APM Group was looking for stability and straightness in the frame and GL10 glue laminated product met these requirements.
For the higher raking wall sections on the Epping Gardens project (up to 4.8 metres), SWFT has used solid section MGP12 to provide greater strength and stability.
These solid section studs extend to the roof profile thereby creating fire rated walls throughout the building.
Mr Schneider said because of its competitive cost and strength benefits MGP12 was increasingly being used in multi-storey commercial construction in Victoria.
All structural scantling used to manufacture trusses at SWFT is imported MGP12 material because of its straightness, mechanical attributes and timber exhibiting full section (with no missing face or edge).