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Designing An Award Winning Structure with SIPS - Things to Consider

Creating award-winning structures requires meticulous attention to detail and innovative design solutions. When it comes to utilizing Structural Insulated Panels (SIPS) in your projects, there are key considerations that can elevate your design to new heights. Here are several simple things to consider to optimize your structure for SIPS and how SIPS can enhance your architectural vision.  Visit our online Design Resource Library for more helpful information on designing structures with Premier SIPS systems and products.

What Architects Can Do to Enhance Structures with SIPS:

Plate Heights Optimization:  Mindful Sizing: SIPS come in distinct sizes. Opting for standard sizes not only saves costs but also minimizes wastage. For instance, an 11' plate requires a 12' panel plus additional costs for cutting.  Designing with standard panel increment sizes and widths not only facilitates faster production and installation in the field but also maximizes the benefits of SIPS offsite roof, wall, and floor assemblies. While our CNC routers are capable of cutting just about anything designers can dream up, adhering to standard sizes ensures optimal efficiency.

Wall Lengths:  Optimal Lengths: Longer wall lengths pose minimal challenges, while shorter walls just over 4 feet or 8 feet are less favorable. Considerations of wall lengths ensure efficient panel utilization and structural integrity.  Be mindful that part of the benefits of SIP panels is the 24 x 8 ft size per panel. As well as the ability to pre-assembly panels together in larger sections on the ground prior to lifting/tilting into place.

HVAC Integration:  Strategic Planning: Deliberate placement of HVAC ducts within conditioned spaces is essential. Plan for drop ceilings in specific areas to accommodate ductwork and ensure proper airflow throughout the structure. Don't overlook the importance of return vents.

Plumbing and Electrical Considerations:  Efficient Routing - Plumbing lines can be easily accommodated through SIP interior walls, while electrical chases are already integrated into the panels eliminating the requirement for extensive time drilling through wood studs, potentially compromising structural integrity.  For more information, visit our How To: Electrical & SIPS resource page.

Dive deeper into our Premier SIPS Technical Bulletins for exceptions and recommendations for design-specific nuances.

How SIPS Can Amplify Architectural Designs:

Cathedral Ceilings:  Heightened Elegance: SIPS facilitate the creation of cathedral ceilings, adding a sense of grandeur to your design. Achieve tall ceiling aesthetics even with an 8' plate height, eliminating drywall sag and cracking. The strength of SIPs eliminates the need for trusses, allowing for more expansive, soaring spaces and maximizing conditioned living areas.

Long Overhangs and Thick Walls:  Architectural Flourishes: Enjoy the flexibility of long overhangs, which can cantilever up to 12 feet, depending on loading requirements. Thicker walls, contrary to common perception, are not prohibitively expensive and offer opportunities for creative design elements such as deep recesses at openings and corner windows.

Structural Integrity:  Enhanced Stability: SIPS boast superior structural integrity, eliminating the need for headers or backspans when incorporating corner windows. This simplifies the design process and allows for greater architectural freedom.  This strength lends to superior resiliency with increasing natural disasters. Premier SIPS have the highest seismic testing in all zones, and SIPS have also undergone extensive hurricane/coastal testing.

The Power of SIPS in Architectural Innovation

Incorporating SIPs into your design not only enhances structural performance and efficiency but also opens doors to unparalleled architectural creativity. Remember, design is only as good as the products you have to work with. For design professionals who aspire to create buildings that make an impact and a difference, SIPs are the most flexible Type V building envelope solution available.

Premier SIPS helps remove the challenges Architects and Engineers face when trying to create living and working spaces that are beautiful, efficient, healthy, and resilient. A SIP System is the easiest offsite construction system that also exceeds building code requirements for air infiltration, thermal R-values, continuous insulation, as well as easily reaches the standards for sustainable buildings (LEED, NetZero, Passive, Well Buildings, etc.)

By understanding and leveraging the unique advantages of SIPs, architects, and engineers can create award-winning structures that stand as testaments to innovation and sustainability. Make sure to take a look at Premier’s Learning Library featuring a variety of in-person, virtual, and on-demand continuing education courses.  Here's to designing the future with SIPs! Contact your local Premier Rep to learn more about how Premier SIPs can step up your next project.

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As the oldest manufacturer in the SIPs industry, Premier’s SIP system is the proven prefabricated building envelope framing system for your next commercial or residential structure. Faster, stronger, and greener than outdated lumber framing methods, SIPs are the future of framing. Join the other thousands of structures built with SIPs, and contact the expert in your local region to get started.

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