Since the tightening of restrictions around working at heights Metrapanel has seen its METRAceilings system surge in popularity, says Metrapanel business manager Melissa Savage.
“The panels are delivered by long-reach hiab truck and placed into position. Because the panels are 7.35m by 2.45m this results in a solid ceiling, which acts as a safe platform for builders to walk on to tie down trusses, eliminating the need for bean bags and netting currently been used by some builders, to prevent falls through ceilings during construction. We’ve seen a huge increase in sales in the past two years and we are predicting further significant increases this year,” says Savage.
Other key benefits of the product include quicker installation – in most cases the product is a 30-50% faster to build than with traditional methods, says Savage. Bracing can be removed quickly to allow for ease of access throughout the building.  METRAceiling also covers the frames allowing for quicker drying times. The product results in less joins and no twisting or warping giving straight, true lines easily achieving a superior level four finish. The product is fully BRANZ appraised and when constructed by a Licensed Metrapanel Installer METRAceiling will meet the provisions of the New Zealand Building Code.
Although METRAceiling is not a new product what is new is Metrapanel’s decision to supply the product as a stand alone system rather than just as part of its entire building system which includes walls, extrusions and floors.
Metrapanel is a New Zealand family owned business originally established in 1994 by Les Wykes. It is now owned by Les’ daughter Melissa and her husband Andrew who are today the principal drivers of the business, maintaining a strong focus on business growth and development. Metrapanel builds an average of 350 homes and buildings each year and growing. Savage says that the success of Metrapanel has hinged on the company’s core family values and solid relationship’s they have formed over time.  Metrapanel supplies walls, ceilings, flooring nationwide to 30 trained installers. In 2013 Metrapanel established an onsite Health and Safety training programme for certified installers to use when installing Metrapanel. The initiative secured Metrapanel a spot in the 2014 New Zealand Workplace Health and Safety Awards. With 520 attendees, Metrapanel was selected as a finalist for category 6 - best health and safety initiative by a small business.
Metrapanel has also teamed up with Innovative Ceiling Systems (ICS) who are the company’s main installer of METRAceiling. Savage says the partnership should see the product further infiltrate the market. For the past two years ICS has been a finalist for the Unitec Institute of Technology Safety Innovation Award at the Site Safe Construction Health and Safety Awards also completing a case study with the Department of Labour with a positive response.
“The concept of Metrapanel is simple – solid wall, floor and ceiling panels pre-cut to simplify and speed up construction. Metrapanel is a 25 year proven modular panel system for a robust, durable and energy efficient building and we are ready to meet the strong growth we believe exists in the Auckland and Christchurch market.”

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