Universal Forest Products, Inc. has launched a new structural frame system through one of its affiliates that purports to lower costs and provide flexibility to architects and builders.
The Intact Structural Frame combines engineered wood and a full-height anchoring system that connects the roof to the foundation (versus traditional systems that connect the walls to the foundation). This "exoskeleton" is suitable for use in regions that experience heavy snow, wind or seismic activity.
The system is currently being used for the first time in the construction of a 7,000-sq.-ft. commercial building in Longview, Tex.
According to architect Kirk Acheson, the Intact Structural Frame allowed him to avoid load-bearing walls and columns and instead shift the load to the exterior. It also met his limited budget and time constraints.
The company stated that the structrual frame system can lower costs by as much as 15% to 40%, with an up to three-week reduction in construction time.