Although attendance was expectedly down at the 2021 International Roofing Expo held in Las Vegas, it’s evident that rooftop paving systems are gaining in popularity for multiple reasons. By converting a rooftop into a plaza or terrace, the space can be used for outdoor living, traffic areas, or a variety of income-producing commercial usage. Traffic to the Belgard Commercial / Westile booth at the expo was strong. The following trends are being noticed both in the marketplace and at the tradeshow itself.
Increase in Rooftop Utilization
With the rise in construction costs, entities continue to look for more creative ways to utilize existing space versus increasing footprint. Rooftop decks and terraces provide practical solutions for optimizing underutilized space. There is a rise in the use of technologies like pedestal systems that allow pavers to be installed over sloping, difficult or uneven surfaces. Pedestal installations also allow continued access to utilities, versus a system that is adhered to the structure. This type of rooftop conversion is increasing in use across various industries including schools and universities, retail and office buildings, hotels and restaurants, government centers, and multi-family or custom homes.
Porcelain is gaining in popularity as a premier rooftop paving option, not only for its aesthetics but also for its performance. Belgard Commercial offers a superior line of porcelain pavers that can be used for both on-grade and rooftop applications. The broad range of trend-forward colors, textures and sizes allow for a great deal of design flexibility. Additionally, the high level of resistance to stains, scratches, fading, mold and freeze-thaw cycles makes porcelain pavers an ideal option for commercial rooftop applications.
High-strength wood rooftop pavers continue to be a popular choice due to the timeless look and versatility. Booth visitors at IRE 2021 continued to show a great deal of interest in coordinating Cubes and Cube Tops that can be used for planters, storage or bench seating.
Protecting Roof Systems
In addition to creating a welcoming space, rooftop pavers protect the roof system from damaging factors such as impact, thermal shock and UV degradation. These factors can lead to pre-mature failure to the roof system resulting in costly repairs or replacement. By utilizing pavers on roof decks, not only are these factors mitigated, but the paving units also create a durable and attractive area.