What You Need to Know About Fabric & Eco-Friendly Construction

    April 22, 2019 | Tension Fabric Structures

    Eco-friendly construction is more than just a trend or a marketing tool. When it comes to major assets like a building, focusing on energy efficiency and environmentally friendly construction can mean significant dollars saved over the life of the building, as well as a more pleasant environment.

    Legacy buildings use several energy efficient construction techniques and have long-term environmental advantages that can save energy, time and money throughout the building’s lifecycle.

    Airtight Construction Methods

    Legacy buildings are constructed of individual fabric panels which are welded together. Keder rails keep the panels permanently attached to the building.

    Legacy’s patented attachment system creates a continuous barrier that keeps air and moisture from entering the building. Unlike steel sheets which are held together with bolts and nails, the Legacy system has no tiny fasteners that can cause leaks. These leaks are one of the greatest sources of energy loss in a building – increasing costs and wasting energy throughout the lifespan of the structure.

    Learn more about Legacy's patented attachment system. 

    As a flexible building material, fabric also seals tightly around openings. This reduces or eliminates unnecessary air leakage around doors, windows or vents. Without air leakage, the heating and cooling systems inside the building work more efficiently and use less energy over the lifespan of the building.

    Independent testing confirms what Legacy building owners have already noticed. According to a test by Red Door Energy Auditing:

    “After conducting the blower air test (air infiltration test) on an athletic complex built by Legacy Building Solutions, Inc.

    The result was an impressive 0.92 ACH (air changes per hour).

    The residential energy code requires buildings to be 3.0 ACH or less. The Legacy Building Solutions building is 69% more efficient than what this code is asking for.

    Compared to a steel framed building of the same size the Legacy Building Solutions project was 157% more efficient.”

    Natural Light in Fabric Buildings

    One of the best-known green building features of fabric buildings is their ability to use natural light. Legacy’s ExxoTec™ PVC fabric has up to 16% translucency. This means that on a sunny day there is no need to use electrical lighting inside the building.

    What are the advantages of ExxoTec™ fabric?

    Using natural light is an effective eco building solution, and it can also make your business run more efficiently – the building can contain fewer light fixtures, and there is no need to climb to the roof of the building to change bulbs.

    For example, AGC Automotive, a leading auto glass manufacturer, uses a Legacy building as a warehouse for tooling and machinery. With the natural light inside, the building (pictured above) has only the emergency lighting required to meet building codes inside.


    Unlike steel, which magnifies the outside conditions, fabric has thermally  non-conductive properties. Rather than radiating the heat or cold outside, a fabric building will better maintain a consistent interior temperature.

    While the fabric used on Legacy buildings does not have any insulative R-value, it will help control the interior temperature by providing a sunny, enclosed space without wind or water blowing in. This makes the building more energy efficient, even when the building is not insulated.

    Of course, there are many unique reasons that customers worldwide choose Legacy buildings. See why efficiency isn't the only advantage you can expect when you choose fabric as a building material.