When considering bollard purposes, architects, specifiers, construction managers and property owners must first determine what a particular project needs. Bollards can provide property and perimeter security, can serve as refined architectural accents, or can offer both functions in many cases.
Other types of bollards can be used as warning guides to note areas that are unsafe or under construction, or to divert or direct vehicle and pedestrian traffic. Some bollards are fixed, while others will collapse or retract into the ground, and others are flexible to minimize damage to both the bollards and vehicles should impact occur. Today’s bollards also can do double duty as bike racks along with their primary security function Driveway bollards.
Some bollard styles date from the 17th century and look lovely on period property, while ultramodern stainless steel may be favored for contemporary sites. Metal bollards typically come in black, green and several metallic finishes, including bronze and silvers. Bollard manufacturers work closely with all design and construction professionals to choose the best bollards for functionality, weather comparability and site qualities that factor into planning projects. Between the increasing use of bollards, as well as expanding choices in design, many professionals aren’t fully aware of the functions, materials and selections available today.
Planning Starts with Function
Function should be the first consideration. If you need to protect the doors of facilities like stores from smash-and-grab burglaries, in which the burglars drive through the front door and count on grabbing inventory, computers and cash, then you should consider security bollards. The simplest security bollard is a piece of carbon steel structural pipe that is often filled with concrete. For fixed security bollards, simple pipe bollards may be sufficient when properly mounted.
The biggest disadvantage of a plain steel pipe is aesthetics. A plain metal, painted pipe doesn’t blend into – much less enhance – most architectural schemes. One preferred answer to that problem is to use decorative covers over these steel pipe bollards. Many stand-alone bollards that lack impact-resistance on their own are designed with alternative mountings that equip them to slip over standard pipe bollards, creating an attractive and architecturally appropriate barrier for any site.