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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Deer Meadow roof remains a concern

Friday, July 1, 2011

While the leaking roof of Deer Meadow Primary School continues to be a problem for the Greencastle School Corporation, the exact solution remains unclear.

Fanning Howey, the architectural firm in charge of Deer Meadow's design, recently dismantled a portion of the roof in an effort to find the root cause of the problem. Principal architect Bill Payne said there are problems in both the roof's valleys and at expansion joints.

"There's a little more movement at the roof membrane level than we anticipated," Payne said.

At Monday's meeting, Payne told the school board the investigation showed tearing of the roof membrane beneath the singles of the valleys. Additionally, the roof's expansion joints lack the rubber membranes needing to cover and protect them.

Payne said there were three main players in the design and installation of the Deer Meadow roof, his architectural firm; Loadmaster, the maker of the roof deck system; and Blackmore & Buckner, the roofing contractor in charge of installation.

"The damage to the joints and the valleys -- our team takes responsibility for that," Payne said.

What remains unclear is to what to attribute the failure of the roof in places besides the valleys and expansion joints. The 40-year shingles are seriously worn despite being just 10 years old.

Hail damage was explored, but a representative of the school's insurance company denied the possibility.

There is also the possibility of a manufacturing problem with the shingles themselves. They were made by the Celotex Corp., which has since declared bankruptcy. Failure of these shingles has been common over the years.

At Payne's suggestion, the board approved the installation of temporary plastic sheeting to cover the problem areas of the roof. Howey and the school's maintenance department will continue to investigate the issue so a long-term solution can be found.

Ideally, a solution will be found before students return to school on Aug. 15.

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