Have you ever walked down Manhattan’s busy streets, Chicago’s frigid avenues, or Philadelphia’s wide boulevards and given more than a passing glance to the concrete or stainless steel pillars that appoint the perimeters of skyscrapers? These pillars are innocuous, bland objects that seem nothing more than an annoyance. But, these are unheralded safety measures that blend in with the city’s copious amounts of stainless steel and concrete. Meet the bollard. A staple of the metropolitan, bollards are reinforced concrete or stainless steel that restrict the movement of vehicles around large buildings or highly trafficked pedestrian areas. In 2019, in the post-9/11 United States, bollards are commonplace in cities to prevent terrorist attacks.
The bollard was not always a safety measure. The earliest bollards were used to moor ships at ports. The muzzles of cannons were inserted into the ground leaving the cannon’s rear as a fixture for the ships lines. Eventually, bollards became a way to direct and manage traffic as they kept pedestrians and horses on the city’s thoroughfares. With the advent of automobiles, the use of bollards expanded to delineate the road from pedestrian walkways. In the age of terrorism, the prevalence of bollards in cities across the world increased to prevent vehicles laden with explosives from detonating at the base of towering skyscrapers or in the midst of pedestrians. In 2018, the Mayor of New York City, Bill de Blasio, announced a sweeping $150 million investment in bollards throughout the city to safeguard buildings and pedestrians. Most bollards are simply comprised of reinforced concrete or steel covered with a polished stainless steel sleeve. To increase the bollard’s aesthetics, Mayor de Blasio budgeted for polished stainless steel sleeves to cover the sunken cement. This means substantial stainless steel polishing.
Although Diamond Brite Metals (“DBM”) is an architectural and commercial metals polishing facility, DBM’s commercial division prides itself on its unique ability not only to polish stainless steel bollards but also to fabricate bollards. The process begins with DBM receiving stock 20’ lengths of stainless steel pipe or round tube from master distributors or service centers and polishing them to the customer’s requested finish. DBM can produce all industry finishes #4-#8 mirror as well as non-industry finishes such as non-directional and longitudinal scratch patterns. DBM will also polish the cap of the bollard to match the finish produced on the pipe or tube. Next, DBM cuts to length the pipe or round tube. Then, DBM will weld the cap onto the tube and polish out the weld lines to match the finish on the pipe or tube whether #4, #6, #8, non-directional, or longitudinal.
DBM’s bollards can be seen throughout New York City, Philadelphia, and Chicago. Our work consistently meets strict city standards and codes. We welcome all bollard polishing and fabrication inquiries regardless of size. We will work with your team throughout each stage of the process from design to installation to ensure that your project’s specifications are met. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact our Sales Department at Sales@diamondbritemetals.com.