Hawaiian Shopping Center Gets a Tan
by Brandon Peach, freelance writer for the construction industry
Kapolei, Hawaii is a hub of activity on Oahu, the most densely populated Hawaiian island. Ongoing construction projects throughout the island, from the development of a Disney resort to a growing road system, illustrate what analysts have already determined, that the unincorporated community is an urban center second only to Honolulu.
Although most portions of the country are experiencing stalled construction and limited or negative job growth, Kapolei continues to thrive. According to one study, 40,000 new jobs will arise in Kapolei over the next 20 years, and commercial space will grow to 7.1 million sq.ft., just shy of Honolulu’s 8.4 million. Kapolei Commons is a premier shopping and dining center that exemplifies the community’s growth.
AlCal Hawaii, a division of AlCal/Arcade Contracting, Inc., was awarded the bid for the roofing job at the shopping center in 2008. According to Tai Ai, general manager of AlCal, the facility was designed as a premium retail mall that would feature two shopping mainstays – Hawaii’s very first Target and Petco stores. “The building also houses a Sports Authority®, an Office Max®, and several eateries,” he said.
The 140,000-square-foot roofing job began in early 2008. Single-ply thermoplastic polyolefin roofing membrane, a product AlCal uses often, was specified by the architect. “TPO is easy to work with and it allows the roofing contractor to cover large areas of roofing in a short amount of time,” said Ai. “Completing the roof as quickly as possible was a priority, because it would allow the interior work to start sooner, while keeping the overall schedule on track.”
While TPO was specified for the job, AlCal had the freedom to select its desired manufacturer. It made the decision to go with Carlisle SynTec’s roofing products for a number of reasons. The building owner had specific requirements for wind and fire ratings, which Carlisle’s TPO roofing system fulfilled handily, and also made the environmentally conscious decision of going with reflective but aesthetically pleasing tan TPO. Carlisle’s tan Sure-Weld® TPO membrane is Energy Star®-rated and Cool Roof Rating Council (CRRC)-certified, and has been directly attributed to a reduction in energy use and cooling costs for buildings in warm climates. Because Kapolei has year-round highs between 80˚ and 90˚, the membrane was the perfect choice for the job.
“In a mostly sunny climate with average temperatures hovering around 81˚, a reflective roof was crucial,” said Darren Juliano of Hawaii Supply LLC, the Carlisle manufacturer’s representative on the island. “It was a no-brainer.” Juliano said that AlCal and Carlisle have enjoyed a close working relationship for many years. “We do a lot of business together, and we’ve always tried to be accommodating of their needs,” said Juliano. “They appreciate the level of service that Carlisle provides.”
Crews began the roofing job by overlaying and mechanically attaching Carlisle polyisocyanurate insulation to the galvanized steel deck with HP-fasteners and insulation plates. The 4’ by 8’, R-19 panels provide superb insulating properties. Next, the reinforced 10’ x 100’ rolls of tan Sure-Weld TPO were installed over the insulation and adhered with bonding adhesive. The seams were then welded with a hot-air welder. “Hot air-welded seams are extremely strong since the welding process creates a molecular bond,” said Ai.
The crew then wrapped all walls, equipment curbs, and roof penetrations with a combination of Carlisle’s Certified Fabricated Accessories (CFA’s) and Sure-Weld membrane. “There was a mix of Carlisle prefabricated and field fabricated accessories used on this project,” said Juliano. “There were certain conditions that needed to be field fabricated because of the obstacles that were present.”
The roofers heat-welded walkway pads in high-traffic areas to complete the installation. “The system was extremely easy to install,” said Ai. “The general contractor helped to keep the application running quickly and smoothly through excellent coordination of all trades on the project.”
Kapolei Commons has more than just a beautiful new roof, the facility also enjoys the protection of Carlisle’s 15-year Total System Warranty. “Carlisle’s TPO membrane is one of the most efficient systems for low-slope roofing applications and the warranty is unbeatable,” said Juliano.