Building A Self Storage Complex

As the self-storage industry has matured, multistory projects have increased in popularity. This is the result of many factors: decreasing availability of land, increasing land costs, the rise of climate-control space, and planning and zoning requirements, to name a few. Whatever the reasons, multistory projects have become an integral part of the industry. This article addresses important considerations for new-build, multistory self-storage.

One of the first things to consider is the layout of the site. As with all development, it is necessary to determine the requirements for building setbacks, green space, landscaping, impervious coverage, etc. These factors can greatly affect land use. If they are not an issue, you can build a square or rectangular multistory building with a 25-foot wide driveway around it, preferably using one-way traffic flow; but in most cases, things will not be this simple.

Building A Self Storage Complex

This is always an important issue, even with single-story structures. It is much more so with multistory buildings because of the added weight and wind loading being imposed on them. The weight of multiple levels and horizontal pressures from wind forces are transferred to the foundation of the building. The ability of the soil to withstand these forces must be carefully considered. If the soil has expansive properties, ensure it is properly treated to minimize its ability to swell and push up on the structure. Any reaction to movement in the soil is exaggerated in a multistory building.

Depending on the soil type and its condition, preparing the site can involve excavation of rock, removal and replacement of bad soils, chemical stabilization of soils, installation of piling systems, installation of retaining walls, sub-grade special drainage systems, and a host of other considerations. Although these items can be expensive, the ability to develop a project in an otherwise unproductive area can offset the costs costs.


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