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Industry Trends6 min

Choosing Durable Building Materials for Distinct Coastal Design

As an architect, putting your stamp of approval on building materials that stand the test of time is one of your top priorities. Multifamily builds when located on the coast, bring their own challenges from the start.  With coastal weather conditions, you have unique durability challenges to consider. Coastal weather conditions include increased moisture, heat, humidity, and inclement weather—and your building materials must withstand them all. 

SAGA Construction, Inc., located on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, is no stranger to the coast’s weather. When they embarked on a recent multifamily project, Cambridge Cove, SAGA executed a design with building materials that would appeal across demographics (homeowners and vacationers alike) while emphasizing durability. Let’s see how they did it.

Advanced Durability

SAGA prioritizes protecting the integrity of its multifamily builds over time. Dependable siding materials that weather moisture, heat, humidity and storms help avoid costly repairs and maintenance issues. “LP® SmartSide® Trim & Siding stands up to the stress of our coastal environment,” says Amit Gupta, Co-founder, Principal Partner and President of SAGA. “While no product is hurricane-proof, I’ve seen firsthand how LP® SmartSide® siding products combat high-impact storms in comparison to competitive products.”

Chris Gardner of Kempsville Building Materials, who’s worked alongside Gupta for a decade, agrees. “Given the coast’s wet environment, it’s important that the siding material used does not absorb water and lead to swelling,” says Gardner. “If installed correctly, swelling should not occur, and in my 15 years working with LP SmartSide siding products, I’ve never seen an issue.”

Distinct Design

While durability is of top importance, SAGA also needed a product versatile enough to achieve a multifamily aesthetic fit for coastal architecture. “LP SmartSide Trim & Siding is extremely flexible; for example, it holds up to custom colors for unique designs like Cambridge Cove,” says Gupta. “It not only allows us to create durable builds but provides versatility so we can achieve the coastal aesthetic residents crave on the Outer Banks.”

SAGA made the switch to LP SmartSide Trim & Siding 10 years ago and hasn’t looked back since. Gupta recalls that when they first made the change, they were met with some hesitancy simply by going in a new direction. “We quickly saw the benefits of LP SmartSide siding products, though, especially in terms of its strength, that the cementitious-based products did not offer,” says Gupta. “Soon, other builders in the area followed suit by switching, and now it’s become mainstream in the Outer Banks.” 

As an architect, your designs for unique regions like the Outer Banks must withstand weather elements and align with the look of coastal architecture. Choosing the right coastal building supplies is key, and those decisions will help you give homeowners and vacationers alike a place to enjoy their time on the coast.

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