Building knowledge and connections

IMPs from Metl-Span deliver energy and worker efficiency

May 04, 2022

Oxford Pallett of Norwich, Ont., prides itself in efficiency. The company is efficient to the point that they repair pallets and recycle pallets that are not reparable.

When Oxford Pallet was looking to expand with a new assembly facility and a new grinding building, the hope was to erect energy efficient buildings. Insulated metal panels from Metl-Span quickly became a selling point for Brouwer Construction of St. Catharine’s, Ont.

“I took them into an existing building on the hottest day of the year, 95 degrees Fahrenheit,” says Ron Brouwer, president of Brouwer Construction. “Everyone inside was wearing sweatshirts. Because of the insulation, the temperature inside the building doesn’t change much. White roofs, white walls, it requires minimal heat and minimal air conditioning. Oxford told us they lose productivity during the hottest times of the year in their wooden buildings because people are sweating from top to bottom. That’s not a problem in these buildings.”

Brouwer Construction, an authorized Nucor Building Systems dealer, erected the steel building frame and installed insulated metal panels from Metl-Span.

Brouwer Construction built two buildings for Oxford Pallet, one a 58,000 square foot facility where pallets are made and a 7,000 square foot grinding building, where unusable pallets are recycled. The Oxford Pallet website says, “Recycling pallets saves hundreds of trees every day. Oxford Pallett is able to save more than 250 trees every day, or more than 91,000 per year.”

Ron Brouwer’s nephew, Jason Brouwer, B.Arch.Sci., M.Arch., OAA, of Brouwer Architecture also in St. Catharine’s, led the design of the new facility.

“Our design goal was to provide the client with a new contemporary corporate identity, primarily through the street-facing façade of the new building,” Jason Brouwer says. “Pragmatically, the intent was to provide an efficiently constructed, non-combustible and easily maintained facility for the company to be able to improve their product output and fabrication efficiency.

“The insulated metal panels were chosen primarily due to the fact that we were constructing a pre-engineered steel building and they work well with that type of construction. They were a cost-effective way to enclose the building and meet and exceed all building code requirements for the building enclosure. However, the panels also allowed us to use a single type of product in a few different colors in order to highlight the front façade in conjunction with the curtain wall glazing.”

Ron Brouwer says this project stands out because he was able to use two colors on the exterior wall panels. It doesn’t look like some of the other ordinary industrial buildings in the vicinity. “I brought a different beast into the area,” Brouwer says. “It’s generating a lot of interest.”

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