Tag Archives: custom buildings

Building Permit Questions

A question that we are asked regularly is “Do I need a building permit for this building?” The simple answer is “Generally, yes”. The frustrating and unfortunate part is that there seldom is a month where we do not hear a strange interpretation of some rule which we have not heard before. There continues to be a huge variation in the interpretation of the rules. This goes beyond the fact that certain areas get more snow and wind then others and therefore require sturdier buildings. Our focus will continue to be getting an understanding of what it is that you are dealing with so that we can put together a structure package that will serve your needs for years to come. Educating our customers on weather dynamics on these buildings continues to be a valuable component of that process.

Many of our customers, who are putting their new building out of sight and they get along with their neighbours, will put up the building without asking questions. This is certainly not a practice we recommend or encourage but acknowledge as a reaction to officials who do not understand these buildings or how they work. It is difficult to understand why identically fabricated building, installed on nearby locations, can run into a problem simply because of what they are using the building for. Just last week we received calls from two prospective customers, the first had been given a 10 page form to fill out and the other was ready to order his building since he had been specifically told “you do not need a permit for a tent”.

In most municipalities these buildings are classified as low human occupancy, temporary buildings. We have engineer approved drawings for a number of our standard buildings as governed by the Farm Building Code. With the large amount of variations that we offer, we are sometimes in a situation where the building is somewhere between two approved units. It is quite easy for us to upgrade the building to a higher wind or snow rating but that does not mean it will be automatically acceptable without a specific set of engineer evaluated drawings for your site. Please do not hesitate to contact us for clarification on any point of confusion. It is your responsibility to verify these things before building.

Please also see our building permit page for more updates

Greenhouses 101: Shapes & Configurations

There are many choices for shapes, styles and sizes of structures. These choices, more then any other, will force you to strike a balance between strength and cost or return and cost. There are many variables that will affect the cost per square foot of your building. Only by careful research and evaluation will you determine if a particular choice is a valid consideration for your application. Our planning checklist can also help to ensure you have all your bases covered.

The focus of Multi Shelter Solutions structures are those that are ground to ground with a gothic shape due their versatility, strength and economy. Gothic refers to a shape that is slightly rounded coming up from the base going up to a peak to maximize snow shedding and wind deflection. By modifying the shape and reducing or expanding the hoop spacing, we can accommodate interior space requirements while achieving ruggedness to deal with the elements for years to come.

Ground to ground style refers to individual units as opposed to multiple units that share a common base. Individual structures deal with snow more effectively and will allow someone to easily customize a building for different applications or uses. Ground to ground units still have the inherent flexibility of being mounted on various bases as the specific application requires. This includes mounting the building on concrete blocks or a short wall. The width of a ground to ground structure can easily be modified or the length increased to create and area to suit a required need.

From our perspective, when we understand what it is that you are trying to accomplish and what you are dealing with, we can best advise the shape and size that would best get the job done in the context of your budget. Feel free to give us a call and discuss the planning of your project. We are happy to help.

Check out the presentation video and the rest of the series Norm spoke on Greenhouses 101 here. Stay tuned for the end of  January 2016 when he presents Greenhouses 202!

MSS 38′ Wide Structure

The standard way that MSS goes both wider and higher with structure profiles is to add to the length of the steel tubing which is used. We have a total of 8 various lengths in our inventory starting with 1”x2”x11’. As the structures get taller and wider the wind and snow loads increase exponentially. This means that we will switch to larger steel and/or reduce the hoop spacing.

The largest structure we do with engineered drawings is 30’ wide which is fabricated with 1”x3”x23’ galvanized tubing. We do occasionally bring in 1”x3”x27’ tubing to make a tall 30’ wide or up to 36’ wide. In the case of what we are using as our work area, we have mounted this structure on the 2’x2’x4’ concrete blocks which weigh approximately one ton each.

Going 2’ higher allowed us also to go a little wider so that we could capture both of the overhead doors to the shop. This structure is 38’ wide and approximately 19’ at the peak. This configuration made it necessary to build the structure with 2’ hoop spacing, 3 rows of purlins (lateral spacers), cross ties and diagonal bracing.

Normally covering this size of structure with plastic is not a practical option since 56’ wide cover is required and the maximum width available is 48’. In this particular application, since the structure is only 30’ long we could use a 32’x60’ sheet installed sideways.

The end will be fabricated in a way that is both functional and to displays some of the options which our customers may want to use. We also took special care to use scaffolding for putting up such a large structure. Please call to have us help you customize your shelter solution!

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