Galvanize Your Way Across North America - Part Two, The Midwest
Part one of our road trip adventure began in the western part of North America. We now continue to the Midwest, starting in Texas. The Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth is a great example of the longevity of galvanized steel in a high-performance environment. The fact that the zinc-iron alloys become harder and more scratch-resistant than the substrate steel proved to be an additional benefit of choosing HDG over other methods when considering the millions of spectators that have come in contact with the steel structure. For fun, swing by Galveston Island and take a ride on the Galaxy Wheel, a brightly colored, hot-dip galvanized Ferris wheel.
In Oklahoma City, two downtown parking garages, the 123 Parking Façade and the East Center Parking Garage, both feature hot-dip galvanized steel as a part of their designs. The Arman Hammer Student-Alumni Center at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, OK uses hot-dip galvanizing to protect the structural steel surrounding the center and to plan for the future as well. Up north in Kansas, there are a few interesting galvanized sculptures in the state. The Revival sculpture in Salina stands as an attraction for new guests to the Salina Bicentennial Center, while the Cloud Gates in Leawood uses galvanized steel to create a clean look that blends into the surrounding environment while requiring little to no maintenance.
Continuing north, make a quick stop in Omaha, Nebraska to see a few galvanized projects, including the “Eggs” sculptures at Modern Arts Midtown, the O! Dude at the Omaha Chamber of Commerce Courtyard, and the Bimini Oak at the Henry Doorly Zoo. As you cross into Council Bluffs, Iowa, take a look at the duplex coated Council Bluffs Gateway Sculpture over the Broadway Viaduct. In Jesup, Iowa, the Jesup Bridge is a great example of the use of galvanized steel in a community project, while the Reiman Gardens Conservatory in Ames is a marriage of custom galvanized steel and a delicate glass curtain wall.
The Great Lakes area has many interesting galvanized steel structures as well. The Federal Bank of Minnesota in Minneapolis has a duplex coated pergola, bus shelter, and railings. Hot-dip galvanized steel also provides an aesthetically appealing and cost effective material to the I-35 Mississippi River Observation Park in Minneapolis. The galvanizing process provides an excellent abrasion resistant coating to help protect the structure from the corrosive river mist and road salts used on the bridge during harsh Minnesota winters. Over in Wisconsin, the Harley Davidson Museum in Milwaukee uses hot-dip galvanized steel because of its durability, long-life, and quality – making it the natural selection to serve as an honest representation of the elements of Harley Davidson engineering.
The Michigan/M-102 Bridge Rail Reconstruction Project in Detroit is a fantastic example of the sustainability of hot-dip galvanized steel. MDOT decided to re-galvanize the existing steel guardrail panels because they felt recycling the existing steel was an excellent opportunity to contribute to the "Keep It Green" initiative promoted by the department. Ontario, Canada has many galvanized steel projects to see, however two solar projects stand out, including the Metropolitan Tea 702kW Solar PV Installation project and the Canadaian Solar farm. Hot-dip galvanized steel is very beneficial to the supports of solar projects as it has great corrosion protection performance when embedded in soil.
When you visit Kansas City, Missouri, be sure to stop by the Schlitterbahn Waterpark and ride one of the world’s tallest waterslides, the Verrückt. Galvanizing is critical in preventing corrosion of the steel used in the waterslide in order to provide safety to the guests of the park. Illinois also has many various galvanized projects. In Chicago, stop by the President’s Plaza to see the galvanized outdoor canopy, then swing by Maggie Daley Park to check out the way hot-dip galvanizing protects the light stands artistically placed to look like an insect. In Indiana, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway grandstands are a fine example of the contribution hot-dip galvanized steel provides to sports facilities. Throughout Indiana, various farms including the Hoosier Pride Egg Farm and Fair Oaks Farms employ hot-dip galvanized steel to provide clean, safe, and sustainable corrosion protection in their facilities. Lastly, stop by Holiday World in Santa Claus, IN to take a ride on the Voyage, a galvanized structural steel rollercoaster.
Part three of our series visits the southern states to see how hot-dip galvanizing provides superior corrosion protection in marine environments.
Share your summer road trip pictures of galvanized projects with us by posting them to our Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram accounts, tagging the AGA in your pictures, or using the hashtag #GalvanizeIt. Have fun out there this summer!