BUILDING ENVELOPE SCIENCES
The Building Envelope Sciences (BES) team at Gorman Richardson Lewis Architects was founded in 2003 to focus on the function of architecture. We are experienced engineers, architects, and technicians who are skilled at un-complicating building envelope issues and determining where things went wrong so that we can design practical solutions.
Building Envelope Forensic Services
Building Envelope Commissioning (BECx)
We work closely with our Architecture Studio colleagues to provide a balanced and informed approach to solving building envelope problems. The integration of architecture and building envelope science is a unique strength of GRLA's services.
Our office in Hopkinton, MA is strategically located for convenient access to all of the greater Boston area, Worcester and central Massachusetts, and Metrowest. We also serve clients throughout New England and the United States.
Emergency Services: for rapid response 24/7/365 click the chat bubble at the bottom right of the page. If we're not available, leave your contact information and we will respond within a few hours. We can typically be on-site to help resolve your leak, blow-off, or other building envelope failure within 24 hours. We can help work with your insurer, attorneys, roof warranty provider, contractors, and other parties to protect your investment in your property.
What Is the Building Envelope?
The building envelope is a collective term for roof, wall, window and below-grade systems - all "six sides" of the building. Our services focus on controlling the movement of water, air, heat, and water vapor across this envelope. Read more about building envelope science here.
SERVICES WE PROVIDE
We provide building envelope services related to the investigation, design, and construction phases of projects. Examples of specific services we provide are described below. Simply put: we solve building envelope problems.
Building Envelope forensic services
GRLA evaluates existing buildings, including the causes of building envelope deterioration and failures, to document existing conditions and determine an appropriate course of remedial action. We are restoration experts and our goal is to generate reliable, high-value solutions for existing building problems.
Analysis and reporting on deterioration or failures of building envelope components
Infrared (IR) thermography
Water penetration testing and reporting
Design and construction administration of building envelope repairs to address deterioration or failures
Expert witness and expert consultant services
Emergency response services (click the chat bubble in the corner of the page for rapid response 24/7/365)
GRLA provides a range of building envelope consulting services related to all building envelope components. We often work with architects, owners, and contractors to help improve the results of building envelope construction and repair projects.
Roof consulting, waterproofing consulting, exterior wall consulting
Drawing and specification review and detailing
Systems design and development
Due-diligence, facilities, and capital needs assessments and strategic planning
Inspection and maintenance programs
Expert witness and expert consultant services
Building envelope Commissioning (BECx)
Building Envelope Commissioning (BECx) is a quality-focused process to improve the results of building envelope construction.
Development of Owner's Project Requirements (OPR)
BECx Commissioning Plan
Drawing and specification review
GRLA offers a full range of building envelope testing services to contractors and building owners or managers. Our testing capabilities include ASTM E783, E1105, E331 and more.
We also coordinate with trusted partners to perform building envelope materials testing and evaluation related to our Building Envelope Forensic Services.
Our building envelope sciences team works on buildings of all types and sizes. We have experience in both public and private markets, as well as residential and commercial construction. We highlight some of our practice areas below.
residential and Condominiums
We have helped condominium communities throughout New England to tackle building envelope problems of all types and sizes. We are condominium building envelope replacement experts. Check out our Condominium Building Envelope Services page for more information.
Solving building envelope problems at unique homes is another specialty at GRLA. We work with architects and homeowners to resolve issues related to innovative and complex building envelope designs that "push the envelope" of common practice.
GRLA building envelope staff have extensive experience on higher education campuses in New England and beyond. Our staff have helped solve building envelope problems at institutions such as*:
The State University of New York
University of Massachusetts
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Preserving historic properties for future generations is something we are passionate about. GRLA experts have contributed to preservation projects* at prominent buildings including the Massachusetts State House, the New York State Capitol, Harvard University, Basilica Condominium, 369 Congress Street, Lehigh University, Bethany Hill Place, and The First Church of Christ, Scientist.
GRLA's building envelope specialists work with attorneys throughout the United States to help resolve disputes related to building envelope failures, building envelope material failures and defects, construction issues, and standard of care. GRLA's experts are composed presenters, skilled at clearly explaining complex building envelope topics in simple terms in order to reach a resolution in often-heated disputes.
representative client list
American Properties Team
Bristol Myers Squibb
City of Marlborough
Crowninshield Management Corp.
Dellbrook | JKS
Garrison Square Management, Inc.
Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company
Newton Country Day School
Premier Property Solutions
Private Condominium Associations
Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Boston
St. Mark’s School
Thayer & Associates
The Dartmouth Group
Towns of Ashland, Douglas, Hopkinton, Shrewsbury, and Canton
WCVB-TV Channel 5
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
If you'd like to talk with us about your specific building envelope issue, we'd love to hear from you! Just click on the contact button below or the chat bubble in the bottom right.
*Some projects listed are representative of staff experience while working for other firms.
The quote at the top of the page is taken from this article: M.I.T. Sues Frank Gehry, Citing Flaws in Center He Designed