Cover Story

When Erik Peterson got the call that his company was needed to help oversee the selection of a new 
roofing product for a townhome community in Colorado, his thoughts immediately turned to the 
creation of a comparative analysis and cash model.  Peterson, owner and president of OAC 
Management, Edwards, Colorado, knew that a financial assessment would have to be levied on the 
community homeowners, and that whichever roofing product was chosen would need to offer an extremely high return on investment.
"We typically do a comparative analysis whenever asked to coordinate replacement products for a 
community," says Peterson.  "We list out all the attributes of each product, evaluate the manufacturers, look at product costs, and then determine which product rises to the top.  This is similar to a Total Cost of Ownership study that many project managers do to evaluate different products and make recommendations of the products that will have the most likelihood of being a strong, positive long-term investment for a community."
For the Buckhorn - Bachelor Gulch project in Avon, Colorado, Peterson and his team were asked to recommend new roofing for a neighborhood of townhomes built between 1999 and 2004.  Although not necessarily old by roofing standards, the community decided it was time to improve their roofs overhead and wanted to look at fire-resistant roofing options to replace the original cedar wood shakes on their homes.
"We're seeing many homes and commercial projects in our area move toward non-flammable products for exteriors," says Peterson.  "In this case, they liked the look of the natural cedar shakes, but the maintenance headaches were compounded by the fear of fire spread and the hassles of insect penetration.  "Those concerns immediately led us to consider composite roofing as an option for the two-phase reroofing project of these two dozen townhomes."
As the OAC Management group put together their comparative analysis, they drilled down in their focus on synthetic roofing choices in the marketplace.  Due to strong November to April freeze/thaw swings, the team sought out manufacturers with proven products that could handle the extreme Colorado weather conditions.
"As any architect or specifier knows, it's paramount to select exterior products that can handle the specific weather conditions of a geographic region for the project," says Peterson.  "We were really fortunate to find one sales resource who had connections to both a great polymer roofing company and a snow guard company.  From the time we met this person, and then the recommended roofer, we were really sold."
Which synthetic roofing product made such a positive impact on Peterson and his team?  It was the Multi-Width Shake product from DaVinci Roofscapes.  Made to withstand impact, fire, insects, and high winds, the polymer shakes became the front-runner in the comparative analysis underway.  "This was the first time we had researched this company's roofing product and we were tremendously impressed," says Peterson.  "The warranty, along with the product's certification and testing were all outstanding.  The look of the composite roofing in the autumn blend of colors so perfectly duplicates real cedar shakes that it's hard to tell the difference when looking at the installed roofs."
Thanks in large part to the expertise of the roofing installation team at Umbrella Roofing, Carbondale, Colorado, more than 77,000 sq.ft. of roofing was installed on the townhomes between August 2013 and October 2014.  "Our team has installed more than 100 DaVinci roofs in the Aspen and Vail areas," says Trevor H. Cannon, owner of Umbrella Roofing.  "Quite simply, this is the only synthetic roof we install.  The track record we have with this polymer roofing product is very impressive."
Cannon's positive experiences with DaVinci products are due, in part, to the company's rigorous testing of all their products by outside testing agencies that ensure the polymer roofing tiles comply or exceed building code and industry standards and certifications.  The certifications relate to product performance features such as impact resistance, fire retardance, and the ability to withstand freeze-thaw and extreme winds.  "In our geographic market, people are moving away from real cedar shake shingles due to their deterioration and susceptibility to fire," says Cannon.  "Anytime we have a new customer looking for a simulated shake product we discuss the cost, insurance, appearance, and maintenance-saving aspects of the DaVinci product.  These are features that immediately win over the client."
A DaVinci Masterpiece Contractor program member, Umbrella Roofing has 35 employees.  Many of those team members worked on the reroofing project at Buckhorn - Bachelor Gulch to install the synthetic shakes, along with custom copper flat seam roofs and a full snow-retention plan designed by Rocky Mountain Snow Guards, Denver, Colorado, on the multi-story townhomes.
"This project had a great number of steep slopes, was very cut up and had many transitions from custom flat seam copper to the composite shake roofing tiles," says Cannon.  "Our quality installers embraced the challenges of this project and produced a superior finished roofing product."
Peace of mind also comes to homeowners in snow-saturated areas when the product specification team takes the right steps to require reliable snow retention systems when roofs are installed.  For the Buckhorn - Bachelor Gulch project, this included both snow guards and snow fences to create a customized snow retention system.
"Due to the steep slope and higher pitch of several of the areas on each roof, we helped the project leaders design a snow retention system specifically engineered for this project," says Lars Walberg, president of Rocky Mountain Snow Guards Inc.  "We started with our Snowtrapper ST 18 Snow Guards that are made of copper, aluminum, and Kynar-coated aluminum.  These are specifically designed for use with synthetic roofing products.
"The 18" length of the snow guards allows them to be fastened directly to the roof deck under each roofing tile as it's installed with each course of shingles.  This is one of the most popular snow guards in our mountainous area, and there are several hundred buildings throughout the Colorado area with this system."
A snow fence system was also added to each townhome's roof to handle the threat of snow release in sensitive areas.  The horizontal structures were added near eaves to create a barrier to snow and ice movement.  The design and layout services team at Rocky Mountain Snow Guards, which supplies snow retention systems for projects across North America, worked closely with Umbrella Roofing to finalize all details for a successful installation of the complete snow retention system.
"Our snow guards and snow fences are designed to hold static snow and ice loads," says Walberg.  "Moving snow is a dynamic load that cannot be calculated.  Because these were two-story townhomes there's the potential for snow to drop off the second level and onto first level, and then onto the driveway.  That's a recipe for a combination of snow guards and snow fences."
The combined efforts of OAC Management, Umbrella Roofing, and Rocky Mountain Snow Guards made the reroofing of Buckhorn - Bachelor Gulch a complete success.  "From start to finish, this was one of our best success stories," says Peterson with OAC Management.  "We'd gladly recommend this polymer roofing product and the great snow retention system to other communities in our area and across the country.
Fire-Resistant Roofing
Shaking Up Townhome Community in 
Avon, Colorado with Polymer Roofing
by Kathy Ziprik, public relations representative, DaVinci Roofscapes
Architectural West Magazine
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