Friday, August 22, 2008

Finer points...

After reading Mr. Litt’s high praise for the re
cent work at CSU designed by CBLH, a colleague and I decided to share in his joy. I will not comment on the design diarrhea as this is not the forum for discussion of bad taste.

It does preface these curious details over the doors that leave one wondering if anyone was actually paying attention when this project was designed and constructed. Someone obviously took the time to draw this detail somewhere in the documents with no actual thought for how it would be realized in the field.

I am not sure what the intention is, as they do not align with anything, and are resolved quite poorly at the head return. While these will not lead to water infiltration, or a poor thermal seal, they are an insult to the design profession, and gypsum board contractors.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Water flows which way?

Here's a head-scratcher. The new crosswalk from Tower City (Higbee) east across Ontario has an interesting angle to it. The sidewalk in front of Higbee slopes down to the west and the crosswalk ramp is placed at the proper angle to the sidewalk, but not the crosswalk. In short, the ramp is nearly level and when it rains, it fills up with water. Here's a picture during today's deluge. - July 9th, 2008

We have noticed this in quite a few spaces around the city. For some reason the curb cuts for crosswalks are usually the lowest part of the street (because the road is crowned for runoff but also because no attempt is made to pitch away from the cuts) so water and slush collect there, impeding travel for pedestrians. One would think that careful consideration would be made to keep crosswalks dry and clear of standing water, snow, slush, mud, anything that people would not want to step in since, as a general rule, its main purpose if for people to walk in that location.

SBS should also comment that no one on the staff is a professional engineer in any manner however we do know that water goes what way? Downhill. These curb cuts should be either designed or constructed with that in mind.

On a completely unrelated note we at SBS received message that the Key Bank overhangs may be resultant of having a "Key Bank style" that includes the use of overhangs whether needed or not.

When Fire Codes Attack!

again, not really a bad detail but relevant. these photos are taken inside the building and housing department at city hall. both are at the top of a 5 story path of egress. these are not rated doors and the building was built prior to such codes. however, a closed glass door would certainly do more to prevent fire and smoke spread than one propped open creating a stack effect. one would think that the department who enforces the current codes, under the general parameters of protecting its citizens, would adhere to the standards they are enforcing.

They are using blocks to keep the doors open because the doors are on closers to create at least some level of protection? Maybe? Is it better to enforce the codes or is it better to understand why certain ones exist in the first place? Are you supposed to use question marks at the end of rhetorical questions?