Sam Houston Race Park

Architectural Building Components

When Hurricane Ike hit the Texas Gulf Coast on September 13, 2008, its tropical storm-force winds and heavy rainfall caused a complete roof system failure at the Sam Houston Race Park. The damage to the facility—located in the northwest section of Houston—was extensive enough to trigger the suspension of the remainder of the racing season, and the cancellation of two of the track’s premier events—the 2008 American Quarter Horse meet, and the 65-day 2008/2009 Thoroughbred meet.

Before the storm, the facility’s grandstand and enclosed areas were topped with an end-lapped, 24”-wide trapezoidal standing seam metal roof system. The system was installed over open framing on 5’ centers. Chosen to replace the old system was a 238T structural standing seam metal roof system from Architectural Building Components. The 18”-wide x 24-gauge Alum-Zinc-coated steel panels—finished with an Evergreen Kynar 500-based paint—were field-formed in lengths to 90’ using Architectural Building Components' one-of-a-kind Archzilla® jobsite rollforming platform truck.

Charlie Smith, president of Architectural Building Components, said that under normal circumstances, a replacement project like the one at the race park would have been tackled in wide sections. And once the panels of a given section had been completely removed, the roof structure would be reinforced with additional purlins to help it better withstand high wind conditions. But by selecting the 238T metal roof system as a replacement, the reinforcement of the roof’s edges and corner zones was unnecessary. And by not having to peel large areas of roofing at once, the replacement project was able to commence without significant disruption of track activities.

To ensure the system had the necessary degree of holding power, 238T panels installed in the edge zones were attached with continuous clips. For the remainder of the roof standard fixed clips were used. And while the majority of the roof’s components—panels and trim—were formed in the field, some, including special offset valleys, were formed on a 32’-long brake at the Architectural Building Components plant.

The 238T panel was introduced in 2008, and combines the attributes of snap-lock and mechanically seamed panels into one product. Benefits of the two-piece, mechanically seamed structural panel include: individual panel replaceability; unlimited thermal movement and symmetrical panel design for reduced waste.

About Architectural Building Components

Architectural Building Components, a division of McElroy Metal, is one of the country’s leading innovators and manufacturers of metal roofing and siding solutions. For more than 20 years, Architectural Building Components has provided low-slope and steep-slope roofing, metal re-roofing, retro-fitting and new metal roof construction designed to save money and minimize upkeep. Headquartered in Houston, Architectural Building Components has developed products such as the uniquely designed 238T & new 138T symmetrical standing seam panel systems, as well as Archzilla® - jobsite manufacturing truck- to serve the complex roofing needs in the educational, healthcare, government, liturgical, entertainment, retail and service industries. For more information about the company, visit

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