Panel Built Heavy-Duty, Steel Building Types


Panel Built, Inc. is known as a modular construction provider that utilizes a panelized building design to form modular offices, equipment enclosures, cleanrooms, guard shacks, and more.  However, over the past few years, Panel Built has become an increasing presence in the welded-steel building market. While our welded-steel buildings oftentimes have very similar applications to our panelized buildings (offices, security buildings, machine enclosures, etc.), these buildings are required to have special properties due to the end customer's climate, threat level, chemicals in use, and/or even architectural preference.     The majority of these buildings require a welded steel frame to ensure a ballistic rated design.  In this context, a ballistic rated building is one that is fabricated and designed to withstand the impact of a projectile.  Perhaps surprisingly, there can be a very wide variance in the building materials depending on the type of projectile for which the building would be rated. In this post, we will go over the variety of building types that require a Heavy-Duty, Welded Steel Frame, and why that is the best solution for them.

Bullet Resistant Buildings

  The first application for our steel-framed design is bullet-resistant buildings.  Bullet resistant buildings are oftentimes referred to as bulletproof; yet, this name is largely a misnomer as things are only 'bulletproof' relative to the caliber of rounds and the number of rounds fired at it.  Regardless, these bullet-resistant buildings are all fabricated to one of three highly regulated ballistic standards: UL  752, NIJ, and STANAG 4569.  These ballistic standards (above) are highly specific and precise due to the important purpose of the buildings.  In the case of a threat, the person(s) inside the building needs to know exactly how much protection their building will provide them to react properly to their situation.   Panel Built generally fabricates these heavy-duty buildings for military or government applications.  They will often be placed at the access points of military bases, government buildings, or country borders to protect the officers that screen in-coming and out-going traffic. However, more and more companies and organizations are electing to upgrade their guard booths to a bullet-resistant model to provide peace of mind to their officers and provide some additional protection for their facility or campus.

Blast Rated Buildings

  Blast rated buildings are ones that are primarily designed to protect the occupants from an explosion.  Unlike bullet-resistant buildings which will primarily be used for guard houses, blast rated buildings are utilized in a wide range of applications.  These buildings will typically be found in oil/gas industries and many other industries which create combustible dust clouds as a byproduct of their manufacturing process.  Unfortunately, these industries, no matter how many precautions are taken, are susceptible to explosions and blasts due to the hazardous nature of their chemicals and materials. Therefore, if there are breakrooms, offices, control rooms, storage areas, etc. that are required to be within a hazardous area, a blast rated building (also known as a Blast Rated Module or BRM) will be used in order to provide as much protection as possible for the employees inside.   Similar to bullet-resistant buildings, blast rated buildings has a standard by which each of the buildings is rated: PSI ( Pounds per Square Inch). The higher the PSI rating, the greater protection that the building provides.  In order for a building to be blast resistant, more than just the building envelope needs to be able to withstand a blast.  Additional components like windows, doors, HVAC, ventilation, etc. all have to be designed and engineered to meet that specific PSI rating. 

Wind Rated or Hurricane Rated Buildings

  Key West Golf ClubOff the top of your head, high-speed winds may not seem like they would be in the same category as bullet and blast-resistant buildings. But, whenever it comes to the state of Florida and other southeastern coastal regions, buildings have to be able to withstand incredible wind speeds up to 185+ mph in some areas of South Florida.  This can be a difficult challenge for some prefabricated building providers.  Though, as a company located right next to the Sunshine State, Panel Built has had the opportunity to design, fabricate, and install a number of high wind load buildings all over the state of Florida, all the way down to the Florida Keys Like our previous examples, high wind-load buildings require a heavy-duty frame in order to stand up to these high sustained winds. However, what is just as important as the high winds are the objects which the wind carries.  Like our other examples, Hurricane Rated Buildings have to be equipped with specialty glass in order to meet its specific requirements. (It is important to note that not all of these specialty glasses are the same.  The windows used for high wind loads would likely not work to provide bullet/blast resistance.) In this case, these buildings have to be outfitted with impact-rated windows and doors in order to absorb a collision with any debris carried by the storm. 

Architectural Buildings

  UL-752-Ballistic-Rated-BuildingAnother unique and well-fitting application for our steel-framed buildings are highly custom, architectural buildings.  These are projects in which our buildings do not necessarily require ballistic walls and components, yet still benefits from our heavy-duty steel design because it allows us exceptional design flexibility. You can see some of these Panel Built buildings at company headquarters, sports stadiums, and even theme parks all across the United States! With our steel frame, Panel Built, Inc. is able to include custom windows, doors, roofs, walls, sidings, and more to ensure the new prefabricated building perfectly fits the customer's vision.  Additionally, our architectural building designs are capable of incorporating other ballistic elements as well, including bullet-resistant walls, bullet-resistant windows, impact windows, etc.  Oftentimes, these buildings are being installed into an existing facility.  In this case, the company or organization will want a building that has the same aesthetics and design as its surrounding buildings.  
Overall, Panel Built's line of Heavy-Duty Welded Steel Buildings will often be utilized in the harshest & most high threat level environments in order to ensure protection for the people inside.  The buildings' walls, windows, doors, roof, etc. are all designed to withstand great forces ranging from.308 caliber bullets to random projectiles carried via hurricane-force winds.  However, the buildings can also be used to provide a contemporary, modern design to modular offices, guard buildings, equipment enclosures, and more.  If you have any questions about Panel Built's line of welded steel-framed buildings, give us a call at 800.636.3873, send us an email to, or let us know in our LiveChat in the bottom-right of the page.  We're more than happy to help with any questions or concerns that you may have.  Every day our main goal is, "To Solve Our Customers' Space Needs With Excellence and Great Customer Service."