Designing for Long-Term Performance and Durability of Traditional Clay Tile and Slate Roofing

Designing for Long-Term Performance and Durability of Traditional Clay Tile and Slate Roofing

Traditional clay tile and slate roofing combine time-proven materials with old-world craftsmanship to produce durable, reliable, beautiful, and architecturally distinctive steep-slope roofing systems. Designing, specifying, and constructing these roofing systems for maximum performance, durability, and reliability against leakage, wind uplift, breakage, ice dam formation, and other factors is not simple, however. It involves a complicated combination of art and science, architecture and engineering, laboratory testing and mock-ups, and craft and tradition. In this webinar, we will explore the specific design, specification, and construction considerations that are crucial to achieving long-term performance, reliability, and durability of clay tile and slate roofing systems, illustrated with examples from our own projects.


After attending this seminar, participants will be able to:

  • Understand specific conditions causing deterioration on traditional clay tile and slate roofs.
  • Learn how to select and specify durable materials for traditional clay tile and slate roofs.
  • Understand roof detailing and construction principles that maximize roof service life.
  • Understand practical and logistical considerations of roof investigation, design, material procurement, and construction.

Participants will earn 1.0 AIA CES Learning Unit (LU/HSW) for attending the live webinar. Registration is free. Please note that space is limited – email events@sgh.com to join our waitlist if the session is closed when you register.

About the Speaker

Niklas Vigener
Niklas Vigener | Chief Technical Officer

Niklas Vigener is Head of Building Technology at Simpson Gumpertz & Heger. He has led many of the firm’s most notable building technology and historic preservation projects. Niklas specializes in incorporating high-performance building enclosures for innovative design of new structures and careful rehabilitation of historic buildings. He worked on the rehabilitation of Columbia University’s Butler Library, the multi-phase restoration of the New York State Capitol Building, and a number of museums on the National Mall in Washington, DC. He has lectured at Johns Hopkins University’s Department of Civil Engineering and the University of Maryland’s School of Architecture, and is a member of the advisory board for the Architectural Engineering program at Worcester Polytechnic Institute and the Civil Engineering program at Johns Hopkins.

Matthew Bronski
Matthew Bronski | Senior Principal

Matthew Bronski is the SGH Preservation Technology Practice Leader and has led projects on many iconic buildings, including National Historic Landmarks. He has published technical papers and served as a guest lecturer or critic at numerous universities, including Harvard, MIT, and Yale. He also serves as an instructor in the Getty Conservation Institute’s annual international course on conserving modern architecture. In 2009, he became only the second engineer in 113 years to receive the prestigious Rome Prize, which he received in the field of Historic Preservation and Conservation.