The modern pre-engineered metal building (PEMB) as we know it today began to take shape in the 1980’s, but its roots were founds well over 100 years before. Its history was derived from the agricultural industry and the need for “prefabricated” silos and storage equipment.
The modern pre-engineered metal building (PEMB) as we know it today began to take shape in the 1980’s, but its roots were founds well over 100 years before. Its history was derived from the agricultural industry and the need for “prefabricated” silos and storage equipment. The usefulness and ease of construction made it the perfect avenue for other building types. As the manufacturing of these metal structures evolved, and World War II began, the advantages of weld-less construction began to spark interest of this building type with the military. Barracks and buildings could be designed, fabricated, shipped and assembled to the front lines to provide housing for the soldiers and their equipment. During this era, the ease of onsite building assembly by the use of bolts was an advantage over traditional building methods. As the needs increased throughout the war, the process advanced and many new jobs were created for this “simple” building type. In the 1980’s with the evolution of the PC and CAD software systems PEMB’s became a much more technologically driven building type. Engineers were able to refine the shape and forms of the structure to increase the spans at which the frames could reach. This is was a major benefit to the usefulness of the space, because spans which typically would have a grid of columns through the middle now became completely open.
The thin walled barrel roof barracks have evolved into state of the art building systems with integrated insulation, windows, skylights and doors! The vision of a pre-engineered building has evolved from a strictly industrial building type to buildings which lead the way for energy efficient structures with a modern architecture aesthetic. Advantages of PEMB include the ability to have a single source for construction, lower cost, and the rapid design / delivery of the building compared to traditional steel buildings. The limitations that architects once faced can now be engineered to adjust bracing and frame locations to reasonably accommodate any architectural requirements.
Today, JL Architectsworks with PEMB for many projects from offices to maintenance facilities. Our recently completed Best Line Equipmentused this building type as the base of their shop requirements. The large column free spans allowed their shop to be open; therefore allowing flexibility in the interior. The shop area also benefits from an abundance of natural light permeating into the space from the integrated skylights in the roof system. JL Architect’s vision was to help integrate daylight harvesting techniques into the building to decrease energy consumption. In this case the shop also boasts an insulated panel wall system. This type of system which is unique to PEMB’s, allows the entire wall system to be installed in a few short days with no additional work to clad, or insulate the envelope.
The utilitarian form from which it was derived has become a more interesting and useful construction system. If you have a project that may benefit from this construction type, let JL Architects help develop your project from an idea to reality with our expertise!