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Architectural Design Intent Meets Buildability

 Jamie Howard      In

Polycarbonate products are an ever-developing area and Versatile Structures played a key part in delivering two custom-designed polycarbonate roofing shade structures for Brisbane City Council’s West End Urban Common project.

Polycarbonate roofing was recommended for its lightweight yet strong qualities, high impact and shatterproof resistance and resilient thermoplastic qualities that can withstand extreme low and hot temperatures.

To achieve architectural design intent in the buildability of the structure introduced excessive design and fabrication challenges, so the Brisbane Council Engineering team requested Versatile Structures’ assistance with the engineering detailing of the design.

We provided detailed workshop drawings of all the elements including the polycarbonate and timber works, as well as fabricated and hot dip galvanised all the steelwork, and managed the electrical works integration.

Finally, to overcome site access challenges and the complexity of the steel fabrication requirements, we decided to construct the entire structure at our fabrication facility first to ensure seamless on-site integration on the day of install.

We are honoured to say that the entire build was completed in two weeks and met all the deadlines and standards set by Brisbane City Council.

Client              Brisbane City Council

Timeframe     2 weeks to complete the shade structure

Location         West end Urban Common

Challenges     Short turn around period

The site is publicly accessible

Intricate structural design requiring high level engineering

Materials       Polycarbonate


Fabricated and hot dip galvanised steel

Electrical wiring


  • Versatile Structures Headshots

    Jamie Howard - Director

    Co-founder and Director Jamie has been hands-on in the shade and steel industry since leaving school. With over 15 years’ experience in shade, membrane and steel projects, Jamie is excited about the design opportunities shade structures offer in the commercial and industrial sectors. Jamie’s extensive design skills give him a competitive edge in situations with technical design complexity. He has won two personal industry awards for his designs, alongside many company-won awards.