As you probably already know, Mezzanines allow you to increase the usable space of your facility without having to expand your building’s footprint. This allows you to increase your capacity without wasting money on unnecessary construction. 

But, before you request a quote, here are some key considerations you should keep in mind during the decision-making process.

How will you use your mezzanine?

This may seem pretty obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people add extra capacity without really knowing how they plan to use it. Is it going to be primarily for storage? Or, will it be integrated into your day-to-day workflows? Do you need to accommodate additional future growth requirements?

Why are these key questions important? Well, storage typically requires less personnel to move between up and down. This will define your material moving needs. Also, the types of material you plan to store will determine the amount of weight you need the mezzanine to support. And future growth may impact the design of placement of stairs and VRC material lifts.

Research and know the structural specs of your floor and foundation.

A mezzanine is supported by a series of steel columns that connect from your ground floor to the floor of the mezzanine. You need to know that your floor and slab will support the additional weight of a fully loaded mezzanine.  Our modular mezzanines support 125 pounds per square-foot, which means a 10 foot X 10 foot mezzanine will support 12,500 pounds. And, you can assume that while you’ve moved material from the ground floor to a second level, the floor underneath should provide the same structural support it did prior to the mezzanine. Be sure your facility can structurally accommodate.

This can be determined by a slab analysis, which is measured in PSI, or pounds per square-inch. The slab analysis can also indicate design features that may need to be designed into your mezzanine. If you are unsure how to determine this, an expert from CIP can help.

Know your local codes and safety requirements

Before we begin here, it should be noted that the modular mezzanines produced and installed by CIP are safe working platforms that come as a complete system or kit. They are designed to meet all OSHA safety requirements and include the appropriate number of stairs, safety and access gates, guard rails, and non-skid walking platforms to meet all applicable building codes. That being said, you should investigate that there aren’t any additional codes in your specific area that may be applicable. 

The modular mezzanine system from CIP

The CIP mezzanine system is based on square, 10 foot x 10 foot, industrial steel platforms. Each platform is supported by four steel columns (corners) that bolt into your floor or foundation. This “corner” column position allows for superior access underneath the mezzanine for optimized usable ground-floor space for operational workflow. 

The other pieces, including stairs, railings, and safety gates are all interchangeable. In other words, if you are looking for a single unit, 10 foot X 10 foot mezzanine, you need, at a minimum, a set of stairs, and the minimum number of safety railing to protect against falls. There is one design of railing, you just need to know how many you need. And, if you plan on incorporating a VRC material lift, again, you need to know where so that it sits flush to the mezzanine.

Additional Options

As stated in the previous section, CIP also provides guard rails, safety gates, and industrial stairs. We even make bollards that can be used on the ground floor to prohibit heavy machinery from going into areas that could be hazardous to the mezzanine. 

And of course, as the leader in modular VRC material lifts, you can easily include a VRC lift into your modular mezzanine design.

Get your permits prior to installation.

The permitting process varies according to the city, county and state of installation. It is beneficial to have PE-stamped mezzanine drawings available to facilitate the permit approval process for you, your architect or general contractor.

How long will installation take?

While some of our competitors claim they can install a custom mezzanine in a “matter of weeks,” our modular mezzanines are designed to be installed in just a few days.

Know your tax codes.

Typically, mezzanines qualify for accelerated 7-year capital equipment depreciation, as opposed to the 39 years normally associated with permanent building improvements. 

Conclusion

Knowing these few things will ensure the process goes smoothly and your decisions will serve all of your future needs. CIP, the material VRC lift pioneer, fabricates all of its steel products right here in the USA. Our team of experts have the experience and know-how to see your project through from concept to completion.