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    Agriculture is becoming more and more specialised over the years. Small farms are rapidly being absorbed by larger farming businesses. Bigger fields mean bigger harvests and more cattle to feed. Additional area for storage or livestock is then required. This used to involve a long-term investment in masonry facilities. Today, modern technology allows the swift erection of steel buildings or industrial tents. It is only up to the client which type of building will be chosen.

    Functions of agricultural buildings

    The most fundamental function of agricultural buildings is storage. Farmers who cultivate the land need space to store their crops, which are disposed of in batches over time. The more the farm grows, the more storage space is needed to store cereals or vegetables in suitable conditions. Steel agricultural buildings are also great storage space for agricultural equipment. Every machine is a valuable working tool for the farmer, so it needs to be effectively protected from the weather. Protection from frost or rain will make field equipment last longer. Yet another use of such a steel building is to raise cattle or poultry. An ever-expanding herd requires the right conditions. Adequate space, lighting or air conditioning is necessary. Therefore, erecting a sufficiently large building will be a very good solution.

    Types of agricultural buildings

    Agricultural buildings can be categorised according to the material they are made of. These include:

    • conventional masonry buildings,
    • steel buildings,
    • industrial tents.

    Steel buildings and industrial tents are a good alternative to masonry structures, which are costly to build and require larger legal documentation. Modern steel structures, when compliant with their design, serve the same function as utility buildings. Their big advantage is that they are much cheaper. In some cases clients even don’t have to follow any special legal procedures for the erection of a steel building or industrial tent.

    Does erecting a building require a planning decision?

    The erection of new buildings, even on one’s own plot of land, requires the relevant permits. As it would be with the erection of masonry buildings, clients must apply for a planning decision from the municipal department. You must also be the owner of the property on which such construction would take place. It can take up to 65 days from the date of application for a permit to be issued. This differs when the facility is needed for a single season.

    The construction law stipulates that a structure that will be sited for no more than 180 days in a year needs no planning decision. The only obligation incumbent on the building owner is to notify the relevant municipal department. So, if you need a single-season agricultural steel building to be built on the farm, opt for an industrial tent. It is a lightweight structure that can easily be installed for a specific period of time, like for storing crops.

    How to design an agricultural building?

    Designing an agricultural building is a multi-stage process, during which several factors must be taken into account. Firstly, the function of the building to be designed. Will it be used to store crops, as a garage for machinery and vehicles or as a place to raise livestock? Each of these sites has its own requirements in terms of construction and general conditions within it. In addition, it must be determined whether the newly erected facility will be year-round or seasonal. Appropriate permits will be required for a year-round building. Nowadays, industrial tents, steelwork or masonry buildings are erected for farming purposes. The final choice of structure is influenced by factors such as the expectations of the client or the specific features of the livestock. To start work on a design of a new building, it must be consulted with professionals in the field. This is when engineers think over the possible implementation of potential technological solutions. The client’s concept is also assessed in terms of its feasibility in the location. The principal aim of the consultation is to develop a building design that is most suited to the client’s expectations and needs.

    Designing a proper ventilation system is crucial for agricultural buildings to be used for crop storage or animal husbandry. Likewise with the heating layout drawing. Details of the necessary equipment is also required at the outset. This involves adjusting the size of the building to suit the planned connections and systems. When you’ve decided to build a steel building, you will need to choose the suitable contractor. Farmers who earn their living from crops or livestock must look after their property with great care. For a building to be safe for its environment, its design has to take many factors into account. Only experienced engineering professionals can ensure these conditions. Therefore, when choosing a contractor for your project, go for the one with experience in similar projects.

    Advantages of steel buildings

    The short timeframe within which we can erect a steel building is one of the biggest advantages of this type of facility. There is no need to wait for the render to dry or the mortar to set before carrying out further work. Our steel buildings for agriculture use steel systems that can be erected at any time of the year, regardless of the temperature. The project delivery lasts much shorter than building a structure with bricks or hollow blocks. In many respects, such a building is perhaps much simpler to erect for logistical reasons. The individual components are relatively lighter, making them easier to transport, which is also much cheaper. This also cuts clients’ costs. Once the work is completed, the steel building is ready for use right away and farmers can immediately start making profits from its use. Other advantages of steel include:

    • relatively low specific weight,
    • the effect of dynamic forces is low,
    • high loads are transferred at relatively small dimensions,
    • tensile strength. Good design is of paramount importance when it comes to possibilities to develop the farm.

    Possible modifications to the building to adapt the facility to a specific service or production activity is a great asset. Current engineering standards admit designs of even a large building without additional supporting pillars. Worthy of note is the fact of aesthetics. A modern steel agricultural building looks way better than it did just a few years ago. The architectural solutions used today make the buildings blend in with their surroundings, enriching it with a modern industrial character. Despite its many advantages, it is necessary to use an appropriate level of building maintenance. Even the best steelwork materials exposed to the weather can become deformed or corroded over time. It is also worth thinking about appropriate thermal protection. Heat or cold in a steel building is not a pleasant experience. It can also adversely affect ventilation and heating systems.

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