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WEEK 7 - STUDIO JOURNAL The site visit this week took place on a construction site on the corner of Lygon St and Edward St. The construction site was a set of residential apartments under development, managed under Little Projects. Many of the primary structural elements were already built in place and the project was in the phase of starting on the secondary structure and decorative elements. In one of the buildings, the floor joists were made from hollow box beams made from steel. These joists were held up with steel I-beams placed perpendicular to the floor joists. The floor system shown here is very different from the floor systems in the other buildings under construction, which typically used a concrete slab for flooring.

Bontek metal beams are used in the construction as they are lightweight and interlocks securely for roofing and flooring. Formwork is used to hold it up while the other strucural members are put in place. On the roof, the bondek is covered with metal sheet before concrete is poured to make the flat roof.

In this building, it can be seen that level one is lightweight timber floor. Concrete wall panels have been used for the interior and exterior of the ground floor. The ground floor has a very high ceiling, which is to allow for ventilation. The wall panels are all precast in the factory and assembled on site.

This is one of the more developed buildings on site. It can be seen that all the primary structure has already been built and the secondary structure, such as window framing, has started to be built. Here, the flooring system uses a concrete slab as a floor. Each slab would be precast in pieces and assembled on site. The slab acts as the horizontal component of the primary structure as no beams can be seen. Concrete columns are also used as the primary structure.

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In one of the buildings, the structure utilizes an existing brick masonry wall. It uses a steel post with angled members that attached to the wall for stabilisation. Plates are used to attach steel columns to the existing brick wall as the wall is starting to become loose from age and wear.

The roof of one of the buildings was intended to be a flat concrete roof. Therefore, the steel mesh formwork can be seen on the roof. The concrete is to be layed over the steel bars. The steel bars act to provide the roof with tensile strength, as a concrete roof alone can only resist compression forces but no tensile forces. The wood on the edges are to provide a boundary for the concrete when it is poured. The black metal sheeting that can be seen acts as a waterproof membrane to keeps the underside dry before the roof is put in place.

The basement houses many drainage pipes. Drainage pipes are placed to evacuate water and prevent flooding. Most of time, these pipes go through concrete, so holes are drilled in the concrete before pipes are threaded through the holes.

One of buildings has a basement, which is supported by thick concrete columns to transfer live and dead loads into the ground. The concrete columns are arranged in a grid pattern.

constructing environments


Boarding or building felt fixed over the rafters of a roof before the tiles or slates are added. It is a layer of boards or bituminous felt placed beneath tiles or other roofing to provide thermal insulation or to prevent ingress of water. Background Information By definition, sarking is an impervious barrier comprising of foils and films of diverse materials which is used to prevent water from penetrating the building envelope beyond the exterior roof (and wall) cladding. On tiled roofs, full sarking over the entire roof is compulsory whenever the wind classification exceeds N3. In lower wind classifications, partial sarking on long roof slopes is necessary to divert accumulated water that penetrates the tile roof. The shingles or slates are nailed directly to the sarking boards without timber battens, providing a strong, wind-resistant roof.

References 1. Oxford Dictionary 2013, Oxford University Press, viewed 15 September 2013, < definition/english/sarking> 2.Grandon, P 2012, Sarking - When to Use It, MiTek, viewed 15 September 2013, < brochures/guidelines180.pdf > 3. Icopal 2013, Boarded or Sarked Pitched Roofs, viewed 15 September 2013, < Products/Pitched_Roofing_Underlay/ Design_Guide/Boarded_Sarked_ Pitched_Roofs.aspx >

constructing environments

Week 7 - Studio Journal  

Constructing Environments