The importance of bollards has dramatically increased in the past decade because of heightened concerns about security. They may be a simple, practical, and cost-effective way of erecting anti-ram perimeter defense without developing a visual feeling of a fortified bunker. Bollards are popular for traffic direction and control, and in purely decorative applications. However, bollards can serve many functions beyond security. They can be used as purely artistic purposes, functioning as landscaping elements. Bollards can create visible boundaries of a property, or separate areas within sites. They can control traffic and are often arranged to permit pedestrian access while preventing entry of vehicles.
Removable and retractable bollards can allow different levels of access restriction for a variety of circumstances. They frequently tell us where we can and cannot drive, park, bike, or walk, protect us from crime, shield vehicles and property from accidents, and add aesthetic features to our own building exteriors and surrounding areas. Bollards can incorporate other functions including lighting, surveillance cameras, bicycle parking or perhaps seating. Decorative bollards are created in a selection of patterns to harmonize with a wide range of architectural styles. The prevalence of the very most common form of security bollard, the concrete-filled steel pipe, has encouraged the manufacturing of decorative bollards made to fit as covers over standard steel pipe sizes, adding pleasing form towards the required function.
What Exactly Is A Bollard?
A bollard is actually a short vertical post. Early bollards were for mooring large ships at dock, and they are still used today. An average marine bollard is produced in cast iron or steel and shaped somewhat just like a mushroom; the enlarged top is made to prevent mooring ropes from slipping off.
Today, the word bollard also describes many different structures used on streets, around buildings, and in landscaping. In accordance with legend, the initial street bollards were actually cannons – sometimes reported to be captured enemy weapons – planted in the ground as boundary posts and town markers. If the supply of former cannons was used up, similarly shaped iron castings were created to match the same functions. Bollards have since evolved into many varieties which can be widely employed on roads, particularly in urban areas, in addition to outside supermarkets, restaurants, hotels, shops, government buildings and stadiums.
The most typical form of bollard is fixed. The simplest is surely an unaesthetic steel post, about 914 to 1219 mm (36 to 48 in.) above-grade. Specially manufactured bollards include not only simple posts, but additionally numerous decorative designs. Some feature square or rectangular cross-sections, but most are cylindrical, sometimes using a domed, angled, or flat cap. They are available in a number of metallic, painted, and sturdy powder coat finishes.
Removable bollards are employed where the requirement to limit access or direct traffic changes occasionally. Both retractable and fold-down styles are employed where selective entry is frequently needed, and they are designed so the bollard can be easily collapsed to ground level and quickly re-erected. Both retractable units could be manually operated or automated with hydraulic movements. Movable bollards are large, heavy objects – frequently stone or concrete – that count on how much they weigh rather than structural anchoring in which to stay place. They are made to be moved rarely, and then simply with heavy machinery like a fork-lift.
Bollards generally fall under three varieties of applications:
Decorative Bollards – decorative bollards for architectural and/or landscaping highlights;
Traffic and Safety Bollards – bollards that provide asset and pedestrian safety, as well as traffic direction; and
Security Bollards and Post Covers – decorative, impact-resistant bollard enhancements
Some bollards are intended purely to get an ornament. As standalone architectural or landscaping features, they can border, divide, or define a space. They can also be accents, sentries, or supporting players to larger, more dramatic architectural gesture.
Decorative bollards are produced to harmonize with both traditional and contemporary architectural styles. The second lean toward visual simplicity – often straight-sided posts with one or more reveals near the top. Styles designed to match various historic periods will often have more elaborate shapes and surface details. These include flutes, bands, scrolls and other ornamentation.The post-top is really a distinctive feature; traditional bollard design often includes elaborate decorative finials, whereas contemporary versions frequently feature a simple rounded or slanted top to deter passersby from leaving trash or utilizing them for impromptu seating. On the other hand, these are sometimes made flat and broad specifically to encourage seating. Common decorative bollard materials include iron, aluminum, stainless-steel, and concrete.
Ornamental designs with elaborate detail are frequently manufactured from iron or aluminum casting. Aluminum bollards are desirable for applications where weight is an issue, for instance a removable bollard. Aluminum units tend to be slightly more expensive than iron. For applications in which a decorative bollard might be subjected to destructive impact, ductile iron is really a safer choice than more brittle metals, as force will deform the metal instead of shatter and transforming it into possible hazardous flying projectiles.
Iron and aluminum bollards are frequently manufactured by sand-casting – a conventional foundry technique which is economical and well-suited to objects this size. However, sand-cast objects frequently bear surface irregularities that have a tendency to leave the finished product less appealing to the eye. If high-finish consistency is desired, seek a manufacturer that will machine 100% from the surface after casting to create units using a uniform surface for optimum looks.
Finish is an important consideration in a decorative bollard, from functional in addition to aesthetic standpoints. Bollards are, by their nature, susceptible to being scratched or nicked by pedestrians and vehicles. Those located near roadways are in contact with a reasonably aggressive environment; petrochemical residues and splashes of diluted road de-icing salts may compromise wygcgg painted finishes. Factory-applied powder coating – that is on iron, aluminum, and steel – is surely an especially durable form of painted finish. The application form process builds a coating with very consistent coverage. During coating, any bare metal has a tendency to attract the powder, eliminating pinholes in coverage. The baking method that completes the finish gives it additional toughness and abuse resistance.
In applications where greater physical abuse is predictable, decorative bollards manufactured from aluminum might be a better option than iron. If the finish coat is damaged, aluminum oxidizes to some color which is generally more acceptable compared to red rust made by iron. Aluminum and stainless steel are also offered in a number of bare metal finishes. Functionality can be added to the otherwise decorative bollard. As an example, common choice is the chain eye – linking several bollards with chain, making a simple traffic direction system. A large metal loop or arm on the side of the post allows parking and locking of bicycles, an extremely popular choice as more people seek alternative green transportation. Bollards may also contain lighting units or security devices, including motion sensors or cameras.