Commercial roofs present different challenges than their residential counterparts. Contractors must take multiple factors into account while performing a commercial installation, such as the staff and customers in the building, the location of air flow systems and the potential difficulties associated with connecting multiple roofing systems together. When renovating or replacing the roof of a healthcare facility, these factors can become even more complex. Special consideration must be made for these facilities’ occupants and their illnesses or medical conditions. For the Broward County Addiction Recovery Center, a roof replacement would require a special contractor to ensure the job was done properly without disturbing the residents.

The center, located in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., shelters individuals over the age of 18 who struggle with substance abuse or co-occurring disorders in the Broward County area. In 2015, the roof on the center’s Stephen R. Booher Building started experiencing numerous leaks. The county decided the roof was beyond repair and knew it needed to be replaced in order to provide a safe haven for their residents.

Advanced Roofing, Inc., also located in Fort Lauderdale, was hired to undertake the massive roofing project. ARI knew they needed to choose a resilient material that could withstand Florida’s intense weather conditions. Facing annual wind speeds of up to 92 miles per hour and rainfall of almost 50 inches per year, this new roof needed to be able to withstand a serious pounding from the elements. ARI also needed an affordable material that could keep the project under budget. When comparing roofing materials, ARI ultimately chose a modified bitumen roofing system for this project.

Modified bitumen sheets are a versatile, durable and proven to be a reliable roofing material that is easy to install and maintain. They offer a high level of performance as well as fire and up-lift protection.

To remove the main roof section, ARI cut the existing single-ply roof and removed it down to the insulation. A Johns Manville (JM) SBS modified bitumen system was chosen for this project because of their broad product offering, which can be applied through a variety of methods, and their ability to quickly service the complex job with a distribution center nearby. The JM modified bitumen DynaLastic® 180 S sheet was utilized as the base sheet and was mechanically fastened to the structural deck.  The laps were heat-welded for a water tight dry in. An intermediate ply of DynaWeld® Base was heat-welded to the base sheet.  The 3-ply system was completed with the installation of the DynaWeld™ Cap FR CR cap sheet that was heat-welded to the interply membrane. In areas with difficult flashing details, JM PermaFlash, a liquid flashing system, was used as the final element of water resistance for the roofing system. The roof also had several unique sections with a curved radius.  JM PVC single-ply was installed on these sections.  Both mechanically-attached and fully-adhered application methods were utilized on those areas. JM PVC Profiles were also installed to mimic the look of a standing seam metal roof, which added a nice aesthetic detail for the center.

As if installing a 49,955 square foot roof wasn’t difficult enough, ARI also faced the complex task of joining multiple roofing systems together. “The roof shape and size made this project particularly challenging,” said Matt Cooper, project manager at ARI. “The outer walls had lots of angles and jogs, and the architectural features added an extra layer of difficulty for our crew. To conjoin the separate roofing systems, we used several roofing crews specializing in different types of roofing. Transition areas were handled in phases with both crews.”

Broward County wanted a company that could not only deliver high-quality work but one that could also recognize the importance of the project on a humanitarian level as well. ARI and its employees are committed to a quality customer experience as well as philanthropy and charity work. Company employees volunteer their time to build homes for Habitat for Humanity and to teach children from the Boys and Girls Club about the roofing trade. Since 2003, ARI has raised nearly $400,000 to fight against multiple sclerosis. 

“This facility is Broward’s main publically funded addiction treatment center,” said ARI’s Marketing Manager, Bill Arseneau. “The people living there are already going through difficult times in their lives. Having the opportunity to replace the roof and provide a better environment for the residents of this facility is special to our team.”

The facility had to remain fully operational throughout the project, so ARI needed to be especially cognizant of the patients, doctors and other staff members on the premises. Since the building is a secure facility, extra precautions needed to be taken. ARI’s tools and equipment needed to be screened and recorded by staff upon entry to and exit from the facility, and trash and debris needed to be removed on a daily basis since the common areas of the building were in use during the project.  

The project took almost eight months to complete, as ARI had to battle against Florida’s rainy season. ARI cycled through three teams to guarantee the project was completed on time with the high level of quality they’re known for.  For their quality craftsmanship and ability to successfully combine multiple roofing systems, ARI earned the Quality Asphalt Roofing Case-Study (QARC) Silver Award in 2017.

Since 2011, the Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association (ARMA) has awarded roofing projects that feature the beauty, affordability and reliability of asphalt roofing products as well as the creativeness, skill and diligence of the contractors.

ARMA is currently accepting submissions for their 2018 QARC Awards program. There is no fee to enter and contractors can submit as many projects as they like. Past award winners have been chosen for their unique and innovative designs, use of “cool roofing” and other sustainable building practices, and for their ability to overcome difficult challenges in the face of adversity.

ARI is a multiple past QARC award winner, including during its inaugural campaign. When asked if contractors should submit to the awards program, Cooper offered a simple, yet straightforward response: “Yes. If you’re doing quality work, you deserve to be noticed.”

For more information about asphalt roofing, the QARC awards and more, visit