Located at Camp Southern Ground in Fayetteville, Georgia, USA, the evocatively named Space Crab designed by Jefferson Browne Greham Architects is a treehouse that has been designed to cater for children of all abilities with a special emphasis on those with neurodevelopmental disorders as well as social or emotional challenges. The treehouse earned its name from a resemblance to a horseshoe crab with a curved body formed to fit within an existing grove of trees and a long tail that forms a 200-foot-long accessible ramp.
The design brief was to create a building with a projected life of over 100 years. This criterion lead to the use of a steel structure, metal cladding and PVC decking material to create a sturdy and durable structure.
Zinc Slate from MetalTech Global was used for the external cladding of the Space Crab and was selected for its properties as a ‘living material’. When exposed to the elements, zinc naturally develops a thin protective layer referred to as patina. The patina creates resistance to the weathering and corrosion processes that many other metals are subject to. Zinc cladding is a highly durable material well suited to meet and exceed the 100+ year design life of the Space Crab.
Zinc zinc coils and sheets may be purchased directly through MetalTech. They are available in the natural finish as well as two pre-weathered finishes and 6 Rainbow colors. The advantages of using zinc as a building material are numerous:
Durability: Zinc has a very long life and is highly resistant to atmospheric corrosion. The patina that appears on the surface after exposure has a self-protecting effect giving the material a beautiful appearance that lasts for decades.
Environment: Zinc is one of the few materials used in construction that can be recycled indefinitely without losing its physical and chemical characteristics.
Malleability: Zinc conforms to practically any shape including bends and complex geometric forms.
Style: Zinc is a contemporary material that is perfectly suited for all types of construction both in classical and modern architecture.
Variety: Zinc offers a huge variety of surface finishes, allowing vast application possibilities.
Zinc sheets and coils are distinguished by:
- Malleability, irrespective of the rolling direction
- High stability once formed
- Electrofusion optimal performance due to low surface oil.
- Limited low-temperature brittleness
All rolled products by Zinc exceed the requirements set by the ASTM B69-13 standard for rolled architectural zinc and the EN988 standard.