This article appeared in Western Roofing magazine January/February 2008.
Clay Tile Project Towers Over the Streets of Houston, Texas
by Marc Dodson, editor
It isn’t often that you see a high-rise building sporting a clay tile roof. This is an area normally reserved for more traditional low-slope roofing materials. But there it was, a clay tile roof towering nine stories above the streets of Houston, Texas. The Memorial Hermann Heart and Vascular Institute had chosen to do something out of the ordinary when designing their new facility.
Two architectural firms collaborated on the project: P&W Architects, Houston; and Odell Associates, Charlotte, North Carolina. The roofing contractor for the tile portion of the project was R.B. Hash & Associates, Houston.
The 198 squares of clay roof tile had a pitch of 21:12. The low-slope area was installed by Chamberlin Roofing & Waterproofing, Houston, and was approximately 150 squares of TPO. The main portion of the roof was six stories with the tower rising to nine stories.
The clay tile chosen for the project was from MCA. The one-piece “S” mission tile in Canyon Red is a large tile with only 75 pieces to the square (ASTM C 1167 Grade 1 tile). Yoshi Suzuki of MCA noted, “At only 75 pieces per square, there’s less labor involved, making installation faster and easier.”
R. Bryan Hash, president of R.B. Hash & Associates, states that clay tile was applied over a fire-treated plywood deck that was attached to 18 gauge corrugated steel. “We used two stainless steel screws in the pan, one stainless steel wind clip with two stainless steel screws in the clip, and put a bead of Geocel 3500 tile adhesive on every tile.”
Despite the high-rise installation and the steep pitch of the roof, the R.B. Hash crew experienced no safety issues. “John DeJesus, our Safety Coordinator, and all of our crew members did a great job of making sure we did not have problems,” stated Hash.
Hash noted that they have installed MCA clay tile roofing for many years and find it to be a very high quality tile that is easy to install. “The quality of MCA products is excellent. Our crews enjoy working with their tile because it is easy to install and the end result is very nice. We have a very good working relationship with MCA. They produce a high quality product, are very professional and do what they say they will do. I was fortunate enough to meet Yoshi Suzuki several years ago and was given a personal tour of their California manufacturing plant. It was enlightening to see the process from start to finish, and it gave me a true appreciation of the work MCA puts into their product,” he added.
“Since this was a high-rise installation, any roof repairs down the road would be difficult. The project required a high-quality tile that could stand up to the elements and last a long time, and MCA fit the bill. We’re pleased MCA Tile was chosen and confident in the long-lasting performance and beauty of our tile,” stated Suzuki.
Hash concluded, “We feel very fortunate to have such a professional group of employees and believe our work is second to none in the industry. Juventino Trevizo, operations manager and Martin Valdez, jobsite superintendent were invaluable to the success of this job. The successful end result is due to their commitment and the hard work of our dedicated crew. This job was a challenge due to the building height and extreme slope of the roof and we were thrilled with the final product. We have found that the more difficult the job, the more rewarding the experience. We enjoy a strong working relationship with the general contractor, Tellepsen Builders, LP. It was a wellrun job and went very smoothly for us.”