Project Quick Facts

Building Client

Trailside Clubhouse in The Lodge Apartments

Structural Engineer

DHP Engineering P.S.

General Contractor

Windsor Construction

Software Used


Structural Components

Wood Framing, Heavy Timber Trusses

Year Completed


Project Background

The Trailside Clubhouse in The Lodge Apartments houses the amenity spaces for this apartment complex. The complex consists of a three phase complex with apartment units, three clubhouses, and various other amenity areas. Residents can entertain themselves and guests with the clubhouse’s picnic areas and fireside lounges. Thus the Lodge needed to be an architectural feature of the community. This was achieved with the use of heavy timber trusses creating a large vaulted ceiling in the main gathering area. The architect intentionally exposes the supporting heavy timber trusses. The intentional timber exposure fits with the prevalent lodge and timber aesthetic of the northeastern region of the country.

"That’s what (RISA) does best.. You know, really great support.. I can send you a model and have an answer within a day or so."

— Bret Brasher, PE

About the Structure

Beyond the exposed framing, all elements of the structure were designed with wood and wood products to create a structurally cohesive design in all areas of the building. The most striking feature is both architectural and structural. The angled cantilever roof design emphasizes the greatest dimension of the structure. Constructed with architectural grade lumber and accented hardware, the heavy timber trusses need to remain economical. Solution. DHP Engineering held the truss shape the same throughout the roof but instead varied loads. Varying the loads vs the truss layout simplified the heavy timber truss fabrication and simplified the construction placement of the trusses. Pairing these trusses with the circular portion of the clubhouse’s silo was another feat. Adjacent to the main gathering space is a silo structure. The challenge this created was marrying the circular roof mesh with the more rectangular roof structure of the heavy timber trusses. The trusses had to not interfere with the interface of the silo but they still had to be close enough that the loading was supported.

How Were RISA Products Utilized?

For trusses, Brasher quickly turned to RISA-3D for structural design. Utilizing RISA-3D’s quick modeling features, Brasher was able to create and edit several design iterations for the heavy timber trusses. The ease to create a model, then adjust the model, helped Brasher quickly solve and design his heavy timber members. In lieu of time consuming hand calculations and/or spreadsheets, RISA-3D created detailed calculation reports and 3D rendered imagery as well to share with the AEC design team. Another huge benefit for DHP Engineering was having the technical support staff of RISA and the connection support of Woodworks. Many wood projects with roof and/or floor trusses are designed as pre-engineered wood trusses. So for this project it was important to be able to complete the truss design and connections economically. DHP utilized RISA’s technical support to efficiently work through design issues and maintain economical member sizes.

Image 1: Ed Babbitt | Images 2, 3, & 4: Bret Brasher