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Healthy buildings, moving forward with scientific progress

Inspiration design invests time and effort in helping clients reach practical solutions for healthy and safe buildings, using today’s construction technologies. We do all this while in staying on a convenient and adequate budget.

We are involved in the construction of most of our projects from conception to completion, sometimes even completing final furnishings. That is why we have the privilege of being able to advise our clients on using modern construction technologies and materials to create a healthier building.

Health is one of main concerns of today’s construction industry, especially in residential and single-family buildings. Specifying building materials which do not compromise our clients’ health and safety is a great concern of ours and that is why we encourage or clients and their contractors to build with materials which do not lead to health issues or hazards in the future. We help them find the right materials and we closely supervise the construction.

Mold is a great concern in housing industry and, so we have invested a lot on finding the best solutions to build mold free houses. Building with lightweight steel structure instead of wood is a great solution to this issue in the construction industry and this is the method we are trying to adopt in housing construction whenever it suits the project.

Lightweight steel structure is the material we promote as a very safe and healthy structural material for residential buildings including single family dwellings.

The first advantage of replacing the structure of a building with steel is to prevent issues related to mold creation, due to moisture. Moisture accumulates on mold-susceptible materials such as wood. In this environment, mold spores can feed on wood, grow, and affect the air we breathe. Mold and mycotoxins can trigger illnesses ranging from allergies to lung cancer among inhabitants.

This means that the construction industry should use materials that limit the sources of food for mold. Moisture does not get into steel framing and steel does not provide a food source for mold to grow. If we build mold-resistant structures, we will live and work in healthier environments.

Another reason why steel framing enjoys a majority of the market share in the construction of commercial buildings is thanks to steel’s non-combustible nature.

And finally, most of the industries directly related to human life today are promoting growing trends such as different sustainability topics including usage of recyclable materials that are not harmful. Steel is a recyclable material and using lightweight steel structure for building is an important step toward using sustainable methods of construction, which is largely in demand for living healthier.

Images are provided by Fifthshire Homes and showing houses built of lightweight steel structure

Lightweight Steel Framing, An Alternative Framing System

Generally speaking, the process of building lightweight steel framed buildings, especially houses, does not differ significantly from the methods used for wood framed construction. Walls, floors and ceilings are built by a repetition of light frame members.

Steel-framed construction began to be adopted in 1940s and continues to gain popularity for many reasons including being durable, stable, mold-proof and recyclable. Using lightweight steel as the structure of a building is well known internationally, and there are large numbers of companies who are involved in manufacturing, supplying and installing this system.

Inspiration Design Ltd. is run by a PhD architect, Parastoo Jafari, who has extensive work experience with using lightweight steel structure in construction. Our company is offering design and construction management of projects with lightweight steel structure in cooperation with experienced manufacturer of lightweight steel framing. Bailey Metal Products limited is one of those suppliers that we have the privilege of cooperating with.

Bailey Metal Products Limited provides cold-formed steel framing solutions that offer design flexibility and add value to the building while improving lifestyle.
Bailey’s products will not rot, and they are 100% non-combustible providing greater safety and lower insurance rates. Walls built with Bailey’s products will stay straight, no warping, shrinking, twisting or nail pops. Steel design allows for larger great rooms with greater sound control.

Images are provided by Fifthshire Homes and showing houses built of lightweight steel structure

Images are provided by Fifthshire Homes and showing houses built of lightweight steel structure

Some of the salient benefits of cold-formed steel structure are:

Strong & Lightweight: An ideal combination that allows for open concept designs, taller walls and thinner floor depths with the potential to lower foundation costs. This high ‘strength: weight’ ratio combined with inherent high ductility (i.e. bend, not break) makes cold-formed steel an ideal, high performance structural element in seismic zones.

Dimensionally Stable: Virtually unaffected by the elements, cold-formed steel structure will not shrink, expand, warp, buckle or rot. This provides builders with greater precision and tighter tolerances, thereby achieving higher build quality making for more comfortable, livable and sustainable homes.

Durable: Produced from zinc coated galvanized steel sheets, cold-formed steel members have a life span well beyond the life expectancies of modern buildings (+150 years). Steel is inorganic and does not provide a food source for mold to grow or termites to feed on. Additionally, it is benign to the indoor air environment with zero VOC’s emitted.

Non-Combustible: Steel is a non-combustible material and does not present a fire hazard during construction, which can lead to significant savings in course-of-construction insurance for builders as well as property insurance for homeowners once occupancy is obtained. In the event of a fire during occupancy, steel frame structure is safer since it won’t add fuel load and intensity to the fire.

Sustainable: Steel is one of the most sustainable construction materials given its strength and durability qualities. Steel’s ability to be recycled, again and again, without ever losing quality make it truly compatible with long-term sustainable development. The recycle content of cold-formed steel framing products produced in Canada can be as high as +90%.

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