The ease with which Citadel panels can be installed was clearly demonstrated on the new Jehovah’s Witnesses Assembly Hall in Colorado. Construction of the 50,000 sq. ft. facility relied on trained volunteers to install 24,000 sq. ft. of Citadel’s Envelope 2000® Rain Screen (RS) metal composite material panel system.
“Almost all of the construction was performed by volunteers,” said Ken Ross, president of James Kenneth Ross Architects, Johnson City, TN. Ross, a member of the church, designed the project. “It wasn’t unusual to have 300 to 400 workers from a multi-state area there at one time. Some of the volunteers had construction experience and some even had contractor licenses. However, most were trained on the job for specific tasks and to be helpers in all of the trades. We used the experienced people to be overseers and trainers. It’s amazing how fast people can learn to do quality work,” according to Ross.
The initial training of volunteer leaders was provided by the Citadel panel fabricator, Douglass Colony Group, at the company’s office in Commerce City, CO. According to division manager Jeb Morgenegg, “We brought the leaders into our shop and reviewed the details digitally and then trained using a system mock-up. Once the installation was underway, we fabricated a lot of panels very quickly. It was a pre-engineered building so once it hit the site, it went up fast. We kept pace with their army of installers pretty well.”
Ken Ross also commented on the efficiency of the panel system. “There was almost no waste material,” Ross said. Morgenegg attributes this to the shop drawing process. “We spent a good deal of time carefully preparing the drawings in order to optimize the panels based on the Citadel sheet size,” Morgenegg said.
Before selecting the Citadel system, Ross attended an industry trade show where he thoroughly researched the various cladding options. “We considered masonry and EIFS and several other metal systems,” recalled Ross. “We wanted something that would not only make a nice impression but would be easy to install by our volunteers. We recommended Citadel because it provided the whole ball of wax—good variety of panels, overall appearance, watertightness, competitive cost and, of course, ease of installation.”
The Citadel panels were finished in Medium Bronze and Sierra Tan and interfaced with a stonework veneer and heavy timbers at the entrances in order to complement the Colorado landscape.
The Citadel system is also being used on a similar project in South Carolina. That building too is being constructed primarily by a volunteer workforce. In fact, some of the installers on the Colorado project were sent to South Carolina to function as trainers.
There are approximately 50 Jehovah’s Witnesses Assembly Halls throughout the country. The Assembly Halls are utilized for weekend events. The Colorado Assembly Hall seats nearly 3,000 people.