Ace Hardware of Wautoma, WI
Going against conventional practices can be a difficult decision to make, especially when an organization with thousands of properties has long-established construction and design parameters.
But rules are made to be broken, and that’s just what happened when Ace Hardware chose to take a different path for the first time.
Shirking more conventional methods of construction, Ace Hardware of Wautoma, WI, selected post frame as the material component to rebuild a structure that had been destroyed by fire. Duane Detjens, of TCP Construction and the owner of the construction site, recommended a post-frame building to the new owners.
Duane contacted Leo Souder of MPB Builders in Ripon, WI. Duane and Leo demonstrated the benefits and overall economy of post-frame building. Ultimately, owners Bill and Luann VanLanen, along with Ace Hardware, agreed there was no better choice when it came to speed of construction, esthetic beauty, code conformance, structural integrity, energy efficiency and overall economy. While at first that decision was difficult for the national chain to accept, today Ace Hardware could not be happier.
The new Ace Hardware retail facility fits right into the surrounding landscape. “The building is not only extremely attractive and appealing,” notes Duane, “but the nature of post-frame construction made it far easier, faster and much less costly to install the mechanicals and to insulate. It was the right solution at the right price.” Along with using the existing concrete from the original building, a timber truss at the main entrance provides a decorative look.
According to Bill and Luann, “It quickly became obvious that post-frame construction was the best solution for this commercial project for a lot of reasons, but certainly because of the adaptability to capitalize on existing site conditions to provide the most square footage that could be allowed, as well giving us the architectural style we were after.”
The building uses an engineered roof truss system along with a rafter design to work with the existing foundation. It is completely protected with a sprinkler system. Interior features include a steel sub-ceiling attached to the bottom chord of the roof trusses with a suspended ceiling system to provide plenum space for the HVAC and electrical systems. The exterior of the building is covered with a log veneer siding, cultured stone wainscot and of course pre-finished metal panels where the veneer and wainscot were not used.
Post-frame construction easily incorporated all of these features. The project remained on time and within budget throughout the process.
“Conventional stud-frame construction would have added far more time to the construction process, and time is money,” says Leo. “We had a deadline set for a grand opening and conventional construction – whether stud wall, concrete or steel - just would not have made the deadline. As an added bonus, the building is far more economical to operate over the long-term due to the insulating capabilities of post frame.”
So what’s the bottom line? If you want to get a building erected quickly, on time and on budget, our advice is to take a very close look at post-frame construction. For Ace Hardware, post frame is generating a return on their investment that could not be matched by anything else.