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Lightweight Rooftop SheltersCase Study

Light as a Feather, But Stronger Than Steel

You have no doubt seen hundreds, if not thousands of cellular telephone towers as you drive from town to town across the country. You can’t miss them; tall steel poles with antennas on top and usually a fiberglass equipment shelter at the base. But have you noticed that you never see cell towers in cities?

In cities across America, tall buildings serve as the towers and the equipment is located on the rooftops. Of course, the equipment that services those towers needs to be protected—from tampering as well as from Mother Nature. In addition, the equipment protection structure acts as a shelter for the crew as they provide maintenance services to the tower equipment so high above the ground; it’s no fun to work outside in the wind, rain, snow or cold of winter.

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Verizon is one of America’s largest cellular telephone service providers and in Chicago, as they have been upgrading their systems to 4G, they have called on Shelter Works to protect their equipment with 10’ x 22’ high-quality lightweight telecom shelters with foam core insulation and steel grating floors. The new equipment is quite heavy and the rooftops were not designed to carry it, so it was important to find a shelter that was light weight but still strong.

The building had to withstand brutal Chicago winters, both in terms of snow loads and wind loads as well, and Shelter Works fiberglass buildings are perfect for such an application. Cinder block, steel or other traditional building materials simply cannot do the job, as the weight restrictions are too tough. Shelter Works buildings are light as a feather but tough enough to withstand the rigors of the Windy City.

In addition, the installation is easy and fast. Bob Erpenbach from United Contracting explains, “It’s such a simple process; it can be done in an afternoon. Because these are lightweight structures, it has become a very standard project. We just clip to the stainless steel lifting rings and a crane hoists it up onto the building—easy as can be!”

So the next time you need to put a roof on your roof, call Shelter Works. We’ll custom-design a high-quality structure that protects your critical equipment from all the elements, is stronger than steel but with very little weight.