Dovetailing the Benefits

Dec. 8, 2020
Ocean City, Md.
Iott Architecture & Engineering

A long-span, “thin slab” floor structure, the Dovetail composite floor deck was used by Iott Architecture & Engineering to build the new Aloft Hotel in Ocean City, Md. Dovetail long-span composite floor deck helped the architect of this hotel project save millions in construction costs and shorten the project timeline by months. The project took 14 months from foundation to certificate of occupancy—2.5 to 3 months quicker than what would have been possible using post-tensioned concrete. Compressing the schedule was important in order for the hotel to book the entire summer tourist season. Along with meeting the opening date, crucial to the project was containing costs and retaining Aloft’s open-air style with common spaces uninterrupted by columns and guest rooms with maximum floor-to-ceiling heights. To complete those objectives, the building design is comprised of a steel podium frame for the ground floor while the guest rooms above feature load-bearing cold-formed steel (CFS) demising walls with a 3.5-in. dovetail long-span composite floor deck with a 2-in. lightweight concrete cover.

The firm leveraged the unique attributes of the Dovetail Composite Floor Deck to achieve multiple benefits, which included: the structure’s decreased weight eliminated the need for foundation piles; quick-curing 2-in. concrete cover over the 3.5-in. dovetail composite floor slab; and minimal shoring required during installation of the dovetail composite floor deck, which resulted in faster construction, reduced costs, lighter weight, reduced floor slab thickness, increased ceiling height and smaller column footprints expanded the amenity level floor area.

The combination of dovetail composite floor deck and CFS panelized walls is a first-of-its kind framing system for Ocean City, where post-tensioned concrete is the prevailing construction method. This project might not have even proceeded without the cost and time savings associated with the dovetail deck-CFS combo.

Judge’s Comment: “The product appears to ease the burden on the project schedule, workers, budget and foundations.”

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