Raslouw Hospital

April 15, 2024
Raslouw roof - flat section
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Long life, architectural appeal and sustainability: Healthcare sector roofing

Safal Steel Colorplus® AZ100 in colour Raincloud and was supplied in Macsteel’s profile Novotexi 440 to a new hospital built near Centurion.

South Africa’s healthcare sector is an industry that relies on long life and sustainability within its fleet of public or private hospitals. When it comes to choosing the right materials to use in a new building or a refurbishment, applying the principles of energy efficiency, low maintenance and long life are of paramount importance.

Says Ignatius Maree of VDO Consulting, the architectural lead on the project in a published interview for a supplier: “Any product we choose is for its quality and durability, especially in a hospital environment.

“As the healthcare sector is a very fluid industry with constant movement of public, patients, medical staff and cleaning personnel, long lasting material with minimal maintenance is critical. Areas cannot be closed or evacuated for maintenance work. This is even more true for the roof finish as patients cannot be exposed to unnecessary noise or even the elements due to bad performing material and / or constant maintenance of replacement of these materials.”

So when it came to the design and build of a new private hospital near Centurion operated by the Africa Health Care Group (RH Bophelo subsidiary), each and every material specified for that building was given high levels of design and engineering scrutiny.



Hence the Raslouw Private Hospital, a 2-level building located along the R55 in Monavoni, Extension 20 demanded the use of aluminium/zinc steel coated steel roofing technology for a lightweight steel roof of 6700 m2. After a one-year build process, the project achieved practical completion in February 2022 and was handed over to the client to commence healthcare operations.

The building being inland in an urban area meant that the roof substrate could be supplied in AZ100 technology, which offers more than enough performance to qualify for a 10 year warranty from Safal Steel. It is backed by research and years of testing in the field that AZ100, made using an exclusive licenced BIEC International process, will outlast the ubiquitous standard galvanized steel in Z200, while offering considerably less loading on the roof structure.

According to Dave Reid, the National Product Specialist for Novotexi 440 at Macsteel: ”Raincloud it was chosen because we received warranty for 15 yrs to perforation. The product offers great wind lift performance as well as the aesthetic look the architects were looking for. So, the product specification satisfied the professional team”.

Consequently, Colorplus AZ100 was factory rolled in various lengths up to 18.3m.

Long life in service

In general, steel’s most valuable sustainability property is its ability to be recycled multiple times without loss to its inherent characteristics.

With global recovery rates (recycling) of 83% or more, steel is one of the most sustainable and environmentally appropriate building materials available.

In addition, the correct type of steel, coated with an aluminium/zinc alloy, provides a much longer life in service than most roofing materials. This means that for a given weight of steel roofing, a much higher m2 coverage can be obtained per unit mass. This has major implications for transportation costs, fossil fuels burned and manufacturing energy costs of the roofing material. Hence it contributes to a building’s carbon footprints as built in a highly beneficial way.

Once in place, the fact that it can easily outlast commonly used pre-painted galvanized steel roofing by a factor of four of higher, It truly is a roofing product that can be fitted and forgotten, subject to the building owner following the inspection and cleaning procedures forming part of their product warranty.

Chosen due to its application and location of the hospital, AZ100 is indicated in cases of Zones C1, C2 and C3 in the table below.


Sustainability and energy efficiency

Considering that 30-40% of heat enters the building due to incoming solar radiation on hot days, and the reverse in winter, a roof’s ability to emit heat is paramount to the concept of a cool roof.

Hence, even the relatively dark color used at the Raslouw Hospital, Raincloud, offers a reasonable thermal emittance characteristic, especially when compared with galvanised steel,, a property that endures for many years, owing to a paint system that does not chalk, retain dirt or fade.

Rigorous testing is undertaken during which the Colorplus material iIs exposed for a predetermined time periods to UV and UVB rays at fixed temperatures.Live test stations were installed at various locations for monitoring the visual performance of Colorplus under everyday weathering conditions in various regions.

Raincloud colour offers a total solar reflectance of 32% with a thermal emittance of 0.83, meaning that much of the absorbed solar heat does not remain in the roof and is instead radiated away. This has good implications for cool buildings overnight after a hot day, a key element of building lightweight. By comparison, ordinary galvanised steel roofing has a thermal emittance of 0.30..

“Macsteel enjoys good service and quality from Safal Steel” adds Dave Reid.

But the final word belongs to the project architects, VDO: “It’s always a privilege to be involved in a green fields project, where you are involved from the very first stroke of the pencil to the last laying of the bricks. Even more so if it is a hospital, as the complexity is such that to complete a hospital project successfully, makes it special. Raslouw Private Hospital was one of those special projects for VDO Architects” concludes Ignatius.


Project team:

Project name: Raslouw Private Hospital, Pretoria
Project architects: VDO Architects
Main contractor: GVK Siyazama
Consulting engineers: Aspire Consulting Engineers
Structural steelwork: B&T Steel
Roofing contractor: Tate and Nicholson
Profile former and supplier: Macsteel, Brakpan
Profile: Novotexi 440
Steel roofing supplier: Safal Steel
Photos copyright: VDO Architects/ SJC

Products used:

  • Colorplus AZ100 TCT 0.53
  • Novotexi 440 by Macsteel – rollformed in the factory


Zincal®, the non-painted substrate for Colorplus®, uses a patented metallic coating which provides long lasting corrosion protection to the underlying mild steel core. The aluminium-zinc coating alloy acts in a dual-action nature to provide optimal protection to the core steel layer.

Safal Steel warrants its Zincal® and Colorplus® (colour coated steel) to have a service life (prior to perforation by weathering in the natural elements) from date of installation. Warranty periods are determined by Safal Steel and may vary according to project design and location. A Provisional Warranty may be applied for at project design stage; this warranty serves as a guideline as to the final warranty Safal Steel may issue on project completion. A Final Warranty application form may be submitted to Safal Steel by the roll former on project completion, requesting Safal Steel to issue a warranty for the specific material used on a specific project.

Look for the trademark. All Safal Steel prime material is branded on the backing coat – insist on Safal Steel material.

For any technical queries please contact Safal Steel and ask for the representative in your area.

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