Balcony Construction Methods for MURB’s
Today, there are various balcony construction methods and styles of balconies that can be constructed for MURB’s. You can have them built on-site or offsite. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, but one is more compelling for various reasons. Let’s start by looking at the different types of balconies available in the market today.
Different types of Balconies
There are three kinds of balconies, some of them built using traditional methods and modern methods. Here are the main types:
Concrete balconies can be built in two main ways – Projecting and Inset. A projecting concrete balcony is where the building’s concrete frame forms a projecting platform or cantilever concrete deck and a balustrade is fixed around the exposed perimeter. An Inset concrete balcony is an integrated concrete deck which is recessed into the building façade with the open side guarded by a balustrade.
In Canada, bolt-on balcony are not very common, they create a projection though connecting a steel-framed structure on to the building. Such bolt-on balconies can be cantilever or self-supporting using posts from the ground. These do have benefits over concrete however they are only a marginal improvement when compared to Glide-On balconies.
Glide-On is a newer and modern technique for construction of balconies that is simplistic and innovative. They have fast dominated the UK market because they are rapid, safer, improve sustainability and design out a lot of the common issues of drainage, decking supports etc. used in the traditional methods of balcony construction. The construction process for glide-on balconies is all completed offsite.
The first part includes bracketry which is chosen from a range of cast-in or post-fixed brackets. These are essential to enable the connection of the balcony with the floor slab or main building structure. The bracketry has protruding steel arms from façade. The frame structure and balustrade together are known as the balcony Cassette. This Cassette is a deck construction made of aluminium and the back member is made with oversized holes to receive the steel arms when it is craned into position. Each Cassette® is delivered preassembled and factory finished to a high-quality standard with minimal on-site finishing.
The Glide-On Advantage
- These glide-on cassettes are manufactured offsite saving time, cost and reducing risk.
- They are manufactured in factories, increasing quality and efficiency.
- The cassettes are lightweight as they are made from aluminum. The weight is usually half of that of steel which reduces the number of brackets required to connect them back to the main structure. This brings down the number of façades penetrations and is also great for reducing the risks of damp, cold bridging etc.
- The balconies have been engineered to avoid visible welds so that the fixings are extremely discreet. These balconies come with special soffits which complete the underside.
- The cassettes are developed with special cast-in anchors which are great to increase the strength of the other market alternatives. These can increase the strength and rigidity by about three times and gives the residents the best experience.
- The cassettes are created using cast-in anchors which avoid RC frame casting issues. This ensures that balconies fit the first time, saving time and resources.
Offsite Manufacturing Advantages
Shifting your manufacturing has various advantages for developers and contractors. Read on the find out the benefits:
- Offsite manufacturing is a great way to reduce the time for your projects. The glide-on balconies are delivered fully assembled to your construction site saving installation time on site.
- Offsite manufacturing can be a great way for companies to reduce costs. These glide-on balconies are manufactured in dedicated plants which are pivotal in saving time and cost. Using glide-on balconies can reduce the duration of scaffolding on-site, resulting in cost saving.
- Offsite manufacturing is great for minimizing storage. Pre-finishing the production reduces the need for on-site storage. This is an important benefit for sites in big cities where space is often limited.
- Offsite manufacturing increases quality assurance. These glide-on balconies are manufactured and assembled in factory production line conditions, ensuring a high level of quality control. This is usually impossible to achieve on-site.
- Shifting processes offsite can also be a great way of reducing risk. On-site various factors like safety and health issues, weather conditions, etc., can increase the risk of errors and cause delays.