In 2010, the Western Dubuque County Community School District began work on a new elementary school to serve approximately 300 students, faculty, and staff.
The Dyersville Elementary School would utilize advanced design, materials and construction techniques to be more cost effective to build and efficient to operate, while maintaining a pleasing and inspirational aesthetic appropriate for a place of learning.
At an early stage, architect Jesse Bulman of Neumann Monson Architects specified TrusSteel® CFS trusses. His design called for a unique exposed truss layout above the classrooms, necessitating a product that not only met load requirements but helped to enhance the space visually. After reviewing other available products, Bulman became a strong proponent of the TrusSteel product.
The project carried three unique design challenges:
- 6′ on center truss spacing
- Exposed trusses must have a clean appearance
- Minimize or eliminate lateral bracing within the system
Cascade Manufacturing, Neumann Monson Architects, Select Structural Engineering and contractor Conlon Construction collaborated and developed a solution that addressed all requirements without sacrificing aesthetics, including a unique steel tension rod system utilized to eliminate bottom chord bracing. The school opened in August 2011 and all parties could not be more pleased with the end result. The building is projected to exceed energy code by 65%, with a payback period of less than 10 years.