Alaska

Alaska

Steel building kits designed just for Alaska

Steel building kits designed for Alaska

From Barrow down to Ketchikan and even up and down the Aleutian Islands, hundreds of customers in Alaska have trusted SteelMaster with their building needs. Our Quonset huts can be shipped to almost anywhere in the 663,268 square miles of the state to be used for different applications like tool sheds, garages, cabins and homes.

Why SteelMaster for Alaska?

Whether you’re a resident or a business, looking for a prefab home in Alaska or an industrial building, if you can dream it, the chances are we can deliver it to you in Alaska.

Quick & easy construction

With consistent cold weather and snowfall, construction time is typically limited to late spring and warmer summer months. SteelMaster’s prefabricated Quonset Hut kits are quick and easy to assemble—you don’t need to have any building experience to put together our structures. Many of our buildings can be shipped within 30 days and put together in just a few days. Buildings can also be easily unbolted, dismantled and moved to a new location to be reinstalled.

Cost-effective shipping

SteelMaster has decades of experience handling shipping and delivery logistics in the state, so we know the most cost-efficient and fastest methods for getting you your building in time for construction season in Alaska. Our building specialists will work with local Alaskan freight forwarders to save you money and time without sacrificing quality.

We have the ability to ship to ports, docks and terminals in Alaska, including major ports like:

  • Anchorage (Port of Alaska)
  • Soldotna/Kenai
  • Fairbanks
  • College Fjord
  • Glacier Bay
  • Haines
  • Hubbard Glacier

Convenient delivery

Your SteelMaster building materials will be shipped either palletized or crated and ship LCL (less than container load). The arches will be stacked on top of each other, similar to a can of Pringles. This provides two key advantages:

  1. Unlike steel buildings with beams and frames, the building can be stacked to save space and therefore shipping costs
  2. Makes loading and offloading the building kit easy.

We will also ship all of the necessary nuts and bolts you need to assemble your steel Quonset hut. If you choose to purchase our optional endwalls or additional accessories, you’ll also receive those items with the arch panels.

I wanted a dome-type structure and something I could do easily myself. My main goal was to have low maintenance.
Anita Tomsha, Alaska resident

Building a Quonset Hut in Alaska

Cold weather, high winds, heavy snow, and frozen ground are all things that residents in Alaska have to consider before building a Quonset Hut. Because of this, the opportunity for delivering and assembling buildings is much shorter compared to other states.

Strong enough for snow

Strong enough for snow

Some of our buildings are located in Valdez, Alaska, where residents can see as much as 551 inches of snowfall during a harsh winter. Snow can start as early as September, but most of the accumulation happens between January and early March so for at least three months of the year (or year-round in the extreme north of Alaska) your building needs to be strong enough to survive accumulated snow weight.

Solutions for frozen ground

Solutions for frozen ground

The frozen ground can also present a unique problem in the building process. To fix this, some customers elevate their buildings on platforms to prevent their structures from sinking during warmer months.

You can take building delivery (almost) anywhere

You’ll be able to decide if you’d like the building delivered for pick up at the dock or delivered right to your property. We’ll contact you once your building is ready for pick-up and/or coordinate the delivery straight to your building site.

  • If delivered to the build site, you must have a way to unload (forklift, front-end loader, etc.) the materials from the tractor-trailer.
  • If you decide to pick up your arches at the dock, the freight company will load the pallets/crates onto your trailer.

David K.’s SteelMaster building was delivered to Beluga, Alaska, where the only way to get large cargo is by a barge a couple of times a year due to the Bore Tide of the waterway between Beluga and mainland Anchorage. Another method of delivery in the area is to wait until the middle of winter when the waterway freezes over so a bulldozer can drag sleds with the cargo across the ice.

To actually have a shop that size delivered to your door—there’s just no way I could say no.
Bob C., Alaska resident

Popular prefab buildings in Alaska

We have an extensive track record in Alaska with hundreds of buildings and happy customers already in the great state of Alaska.

Garages

Garages

McCarthy, Alaska

Equipment Storage

Equipment Storage

Palmer, Alaska

Workshops

Workshops

Girdwood, Alaska

Industrial

Industrial

Middleton Island, Alaska

Cabins

Cabins

Dillingham, Alaska

Sheds

Sheds

Fairbanks, Alaska

Versatile agricultural storage sheds & barns for Anchorage & beyond

Although the state of Alaska has 365 million acres, only 880,000 acres are farmed in the state. Most of the state’s 500 farms are located northeast of Anchorage.

Although greenhouse and nursery crops are the fastest growing industry in Alaska, the state is best known for its seafood industry, which accounts for over 60 percent of commercial seafood harvested in the U.S. Additionally, the timber industry is vital to the local economy and spans over 25 million acres.

All of these agricultural industries benefit from SteelMaster’s collection of versatile buildings. Store large tractors or expensive equipment, keep hay or harvests safe, or even provide shipyards with sturdy alternatives with Quonsets.

Designed to withstand Alaskan winters & natural disasters

If you’re planning to build in Alaska, you better also plan to have a building that can handle blizzards, avalanches, ice jams, wildfires and earthquakes. SteelMaster’s prefabricated steel buildings are designed to withstand some of the most severe weather events no matter where you are in Alaska. This is because of our roofless, arch design and the strength of steel compared to other building materials.

Disaster Event Steel Quonset Building
Blizzard/Snowfall With tensile and yield strength far beyond wood and aluminum, steel buildings with properly arched roofs are the strongest options
Severe Wind Arched steel buildings have wind smoothly glide over it, withstanding winds up to 190 MPH
Wildfires Type II non-combustible material doesn't melt until 4,500 degrees
Earthquakes Category E rated buildings approved by FEMA for building in some of the most seismically active parts of the country
Heavy snow loads in Alaska

Heavy snow loads in Alaska

Alaska is the snowiest state in the union by a wide margin with many cities seeing close to or well over 100 inches of snow a year and places like Thompson Pass and Valdez getting three to five times that.

Alaska’s unique position geographically guarantees large amounts of snowfall. It’s relatively close to the north pole and sees cold air that funnels from the Alaskan snowfields and glaciers mixing with moist air that comes up from the Gulf of Alaska yielding about 74.5 inches of snowfall on average statewide. So the need for a building to be tough enough to handle any snowload is not just a luxury but a necessity.

Building for snow

Building for snow

First, metal Quonset huts can be designed to withstand your area’s snow load requirements, which in some cases can be 300 pounds per square inch. Additionally, SteelMaster’s building experts can design structures that have the optimal 4:12 roof pitch and require no maintenance.

Our design specialists will help you determine the snow loads for your area so your building is delivered with Alaska-stamped engineered blueprints to meet snow load requirements. This includes withstanding the rare but dangerous Alaskan Ice Jams and the spring floods. Even when a building permit is not required, our buildings are still designed to the latest code. All designs and calculations are stamped by a licensed, professional engineer and provide clearly diagrammed drawings of your building.

 


Our models

Any of our models can accommodate heavy snow loads, including the A-Model, S-Model, the classic Q-Model and the X-Model, which is the most popular for heavy snow. We also offer a C-Model that serves as the best carport in snowy climates.

X-Model

X-Model

A-Model

A-Model

S-Model

S-Model

Q-Model

Q-Model

What about wind?

What about wind?

In many places in Alaska, the wind is worse than snow. Some areas require wind loads of up to 175 miles per hour. In addition to Alaska’s local building code requirements, we construct our buildings in accordance with codes determined by the International Building Code and ASCE-7. Both codes ensure that buildings around the country are constructed to meet specific standards.

Risks of a separate roof

Risks of a separate roof

Unlike metal arched buildings, traditional steel or wood-frame buildings are especially vulnerable to wind loads and can suffer extreme damage. If wind finds its way into a wood-frame building, the pressure could cause the roof to disconnect from the structure, increasing the potential for a collapse. This kind of disaster can be costly and possibly deadly under certain conditions

Quonset Huts are secure

Quonset Huts are secure

The design of the Quonset Hut evenly distributes the wind load, transferring the pressure to the bottom of each arch. There is no chance of the roof blowing off in a harsh winter blizzard because there is no separate roof. Each prefabricated, steel arch is bolted together and overlapped to ensure maximum strength when dangerous winds occur.


 

Category E earthquake rated

In a study published by Live Science Alaska, the highest average magnitude earthquakes in the United States is in Alaska, averaging +10% more intense quakes than in California. SteelMaster’s metal prefabricated buildings are strong enough to handle the shaky conditions of an earthquake.

Our earthquake-resistant structures follow building codes maintained by the International Code Council (ICC), which have the best guidance on how structures should be designed and constructed to limit seismic risk. Our buildings can be designed to Seismic Design Category E for areas near a major fault with high seismic vulnerability.

Seismic waves

Seismic waves

The steel arches of Quonset Huts are secured to a sturdy concrete foundation, adding even more strength to the building. During an earthquake, the load is transferred to the foundation through the ceiling and walls. Our steel buildings are constructed as one unit, which evenly distributes the energy caused by seismic waves to its concrete foundation with little chance of damage.

A 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit Anchorage on November 30, 2018. The earthquake brought down phone lines, knocked out power and caused devastating damage. However, Jerry and Jana Gooch’s SteelMaster garage in Palmer, Alaska stayed completely intact. Jana said she and her husband are building a SteelMaster Quonset Hut home because of the frequent earthquakes that hit Alaska.

 

[There was] not a bit of damage. Arches not bent or twisted; bolts still intact. The best part, all of my husband’s tools stayed put on the shelving we built inside.
Jana Gooch, Anchorage

 

Wildfires

For the amount of acreage of dense forest found throughout the state, Alaska sees a surprisingly small amount of wildfires. This is partly due to weather patterns and less human activity in the wild. That said, the chance of a wildfire spreading to your home or community isn’t zero.

Advantages of Steel Buildings

People who own steel buildings have a significant advantage over those who have traditional buildings due to the engineered fire resistance in a Quonset Hut. Steel buildings are considered to be both type 1 and type 2 buildings in fire codes by the IBC. Type 1 categorizes it as fire-resistant and type 2 determines that the structure is non-combustible.

Painted A-model Quonset cabin in the snow covered Alaskan wilderness.

Alaska certified buildings

Talk to a building specialist

"*" indicates required fields

First & Last Name*