Mezzanine systems are systems used in factories, warehouses, and other high ceiling spaces, typically used in order to create more workspace and storage. In addition to these types of spaces, mezzanine systems can be installed in wineries, automobile dealerships, food processing plants, distribution centers, archives, and auto repair centers. In essence, they are temporary or semi-permanent intermediate floors that consist of open, raised platforms and columns and beams that support them. Note that, while they are similar to full stories or floors, they are not the same, as they are often grated, they have a much smaller area than regular floors and they are not typically walled.
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Design of Mezzanine Systems
Mezzanine systems may be custom made or prefabricated or partially assembled and portable, depending on the application's needs. In addition, they can be free-standing, meaning they do not rely on another structure for support, or they can be structural, meaning that they are built into the structure of a building. They can be built into various differently shaped configurations, including rectangular, square, or irregular, that can be arranged around a factory perimeter, in the middle of a warehouse floor, or, assuming it can support the extra weight above existing shelving. In these ways, they can be built to accommodate long term storage applications, short term storage applications, light machinery applications, and office space applications alike.
Constructing a Mezzanine System
Though it is not a very common choice, mezzanine systems may be designed with the capacity to support office space on their upper levels. If this is the case, they can also be customized with outlets, windows, doors, lights, paneling, etc. Typically, regardless of their exact application, mezzanine structures are made from structural steel, while mezzanine decks may be made from a number of different materials, such as resin board, corrugated decking, diamond grip flooring, open bar grating, concrete, and open steel planking. Mezzanine systems may also be equipped with staircases, handrails, gates, and ladders. Staircases can be made using different configurations offering different maximum rises, minimum runs, angle sizes, handrail styles, and railings. Railings may be extendable or they may be factory welded and stationary. Handrails are typically available in one, two, three, or wire mesh configurations. Standard gate configurations include single swing, double swing, sliding, safety pivot, and safety lift out gates, which are completely removable. Most commonly, mezzanine gates are constructed from hollow structural tubing. Ladders are commonly installed as fire escape route tools and generally help users meet the standards of building codes and fire regulations. They may be installed at various access points, depending on the layout of the mezzanine.
Mezzanine System’s Standards and Specifications
Mezzanine systems effectively double the practical capacity of the areas in which they are built, and thus they are highly valuable. To make sure that they retain this value and do pose a threat to health and safety of those working around them, mezzanine systems are made to meet the standards of not only individual building codes and fire regulations. They must also meet the standards of organizations like OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) and the ICC (International Code Council), which dictate IBC (International Building Code). In order to plan out the details of your next mezzanine systems, we recommend that you discuss your specifications with an experienced mezzanine and platform system provider today. Find the very best providers by browsing the mezzanine construction companies listed on this page.
Things to Consider When Choosing Mezzanine Systems
In order to create mezzanine systems that provide the most effective space utilization, manufacturers must first decide whether an application requires prefabricated mezzanines or custom made mezzanines. If there is enough free space and it can be cleared easily for construction, prefabricated mezzanine systems are usually the way to go. Offering simple and effective storage expansion, prefab mezzanine systems can be bolted together around or on top of existing structures, and they may incorporate other equipment into their structure. Electrical conduits, for example, can be integrated into a prefab mezzanine system by being run through web bar joists. On the other hand, manufacturers must create custom designed systems if a workspace layout is too complicated or irregular to accommodate prefabricated mezzanines. If this is the case, an architect from a mezzanine construction company may come on site to study the space in which the system or systems are to be installed. Then, based on their findings, they should develop a plan of action to effectively incorporate the new systems into the space without creating a counterproductive disruption.