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Can You Customize Pre-Engineered Steel Structures?

Pre-Engineered Steel Structures

If you want to erect a steel building, or if you have not decided what kind of building you want or need, you may wonder if pre-engineered steel is the right choice for your project.

This is especially true if you hope to make specific design choices to create a unique aesthetic or fulfill a particular function. What you may not realize is that pre-engineered means you have unlimited options for your project. At Norsteel Building Systems Ltd, we pride ourselves on tailoring each building we erect to the distinct needs of our clients. We can do this in many ways including variations for:

  • The climate

  • Visual appeal

  • Municipal compliance

  • Energy efficiency

  • Design features

  • And much more

Here are some details of how we can—and do—custom tailor our steel building projects: Climate A commercial construction project in Kelowna, BC understandably has a different set of building constraints than one located in Richmond, BC or one in Williams Lake, BC. Each building location and its design must consider its known seismic activity, precipitation, snow loads, temperature extremes, coastal conditions and so much more. The beauty of our pre-engineered steel buildings, however, is that we take all the guess-work and variables out of the equation for you when we work with you on your design and construction. Our designers know and understand the needs of our customers and their buildings. For example, we can recommend snow guards as part of the planned building in climates where there is heavy snowfall, and we can avoid them where snow fall is not a big consideration. What this means for our customers is that their buildings are unique to them and their circumstances. Our pre-engineered structures are designed for the local environment, ensuring functionality and durability over the long haul. Visual Appeal Different customers have different expectations for the visual look and feel of their buildings. Traditionally utilitarian buildings are plain, but with steel structures, they don’t have to be. From basic equipment storage shed with few additional details or finishes to a retail or office space with fine design details inside and out, steel buildings offer great flexibility and versatility. We are based in Kelowna in the Okanagan, but with over 500 builds across BC, we are your local BC source to know and plan your needs in any BC area. In many municipalities, even warehouses and other industrial buildings will have design requirements and details to achieve a cohesive look for a commercial district. In other cases, if you are building a commercial space such as a winery in the Okanagan or a retail store in Victoria, aesthetics become critical to set the mood and tone for the shopping or customer experience. Our designers work with you to come up with just the perfect custom look for your building. Pre-engineered structures can be as elaborate or as simple as you require. Bylaws & Compliance Whether a Lower Mainland city like Coquitlam, or an Interior one like Penticton, each municipality has bylaws that regulate what types of structures can be built and where. Even different commercial buildings can have different rules depending on whether they are in an industrial area, a light industrial area, or a retail district, for example. In addition to these zoning type requirements, owners are often surprised to find out that what they planned and expected for the result for their building is not the same as what the city or municipality has in mind. In those cases, having a general contractor like Norsteel Building Systems who already knows these and is familiar with working with the municipalities to meet their design requirements can make the project go a lot smoother and faster. Basic regulations can dictate things like building height, finishes, appearance, colour, minimum and maximum number of windows, doors, and many other factors. Our steel structures are designed to comply with bylaws and regulations. Energy Efficiency Every owner is concerned about operational costs including power consumption for their building. Energy efficiency is not only desired, but in many cases, building and energy code requirements work towards improved energy efficiencies of buildings. Because of these codes as well as general interest in reducing power consumption by building owners, planning for increased energy efficiency for a building is critical! There is no “one-size-fits-all” solution to achieving energy efficiency in a commercial building. It can start at ground level of the construction with the foundation, and continue with considerations for “R-values” (the degree of insulation) for both walls and roofs. Keeping heat in and cool out on a ski hill or cool in and heat out in a fruit packing plant can be key considerations for your pre-engineered steel buildings. In addition, considerations for the people who are working in them daily also bring about some design and element choices. Want more natural light? Add skylights to your building, and more windows or glass doors. Maybe even a whole wall of windows. These techniques for “daylighting” your building can result in increased brightness in your space with reduced power consumption. A win-win! The present cost of these add-ons can be weighed against the future energy savings over the lifetime of the building. Unique Features Some commercial buildings simply have unique designs or configurations that are easily managed in a pre-engineered steel building. Whether you need large overhead doors for loading and unloading goods, or you need the whole side of the building to open to allow large equipment or even aircraft to fit inside a steel hangar, anything is possible. We can even build a separate little door the size of an airplane tail right at the top of the large sliding doors to ensure that the entire plane can go in our buildings for maintenance and repair. Some industrial customers require one or more cranes to be inside their building and we design and build for those too. Finally, some structures require mixed-use space, such as in some warehouses that incorporate both industrial workspace and finished, comfortable office and staff spaces. Whatever features your structure needs, Norsteel Building Systems can design and erect it with pre-fabricated steel. When you choose us for your commercial, industrial, aviation or other steel construction project, you gain a partner committed to your ongoing success. We’ll work closely with you to design and build a structure that meets your needs for today, while making sure it can grow with your expanding needs tomorrow. Located in Kelowna and servicing all of BC and Western Canada for over 25 years, our 500+ pre-engineered buildings speak for themselves! Contact us today to get a free quote for your upcoming project.


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