In today’s increasingly complex architectural landscape – one with many different project delivery methods and new standards for project performance – architects must manage risk and uncertainty, in many different forms, every day.

While the design and construction process will never be an exact science, there is more pressure than ever on today’s architects to eliminate uncertainty from their projects; and when there is uncertainty, to manage it better. It all starts with the owner-architect relationship and managing expectations, and from there it funnels down to every building component.

One of those components is the design of storage spaces. While it is not the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of crucial building components, it does exist in every building, and in fact is quite crucial, especially in multi-housing developments where it is highly sought-after by prospective tenants and is an important consideration for them when choosing a place to live. Therefore, to effectively manage the expectations of an owner of a multi-housing development, it is key to design and deliver storage solutions and options that help them sell or rent units.

In order to ‘design and deliver,’ an architect must specify storage products that will be consistent in design, installation, and performance throughout a multi-housing development, and potentially across a number of developments. As such, these products must be easy to design-in, easy to install on-site, and be covered by a manufacturer warranty. One example of this type of product is the new ExpressShelf™ system from ClosetMaid®.

ExpressShelf is a finished shelf and rod system that provides a fast and affordable alternative to traditional, painted-MDF plank and pole systems. It can also be configured as a shelf system without a rod for other storage applications. Traditional systems require the work of several trades and do not always offer a consistent look because they are “built” on-site. But ExpressShelf is a completely finished shelf and rod that goes up quickly and simply with basic tools or an optional drill template with no caulking and painting required. This allows it to produce a guaranteed design aesthetic and consistent quality of installation, that will look exactly the same regardless of who is installing it. It is also easy to manage on the job site with fewer parts, can be designed-in to fit and match almost any space or room style, and carries a free replacement warranty.

Ultimately, new products like ExpressShelf offer architects storage solutions that are beautiful, reliable, and easily repeatable. And as a result, they can be specified in large-scale applications like multi-housing developments with little risk of deviation in design or quality – earning the architect’s full confidence and the owner’s stamp of approval.

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