Story | 08/24/2017 11:36:00

Designed for living: UPM ProFi Decking

The setting up of outdoor decking at cafés and restaurants is one of the first signs of summer. At home, getting out the barbecue and inviting friends for long lazy summer days and evenings on the deck is what summer holidays are all about. Sunbathing, reading, exercising or just drinking a morning coffee in peace, all are part of life on a deck. When summer turns to autumn, when the light fades and an evening chill sets in, there is no better way to live the last of summer, than wrapped in a blanket in a comfortable chair: a deck chair. Decking and summer and free time: inseparable!

Since its launch in 2007, UPM ProFi has been making summer life even better. The weather may not actually have improved, and yet outdoor decking has never looked so good. Fresh and modern in style, UPM ProFi decking is almost maintenance free, allowing more time for all the fun things in summer.

During the past ten years, UPM ProFi composite decks have been installed throughout Europe, from the Mediterranean coast to Lapland, and beyond. As part of the 10th anniversary, the UPM ProFi team has revisited some of the decks installed during the early years, and has been delighted to see how well the decks have performed.

“Our decking boards are designed to survive the most demanding weather conditions. For example, the decks installed ten years ago at Saariselkä in Lapland, Finland, still look great, even though each year the temperature can vary from -40°C to +30°C,” describes Aleksandra Hämäläinen, International Sales Manager at UPM Biocomposites.

“Although seldom needed for most decks, UPM ProFi decking boards have an ultra-durable core that will remain structurally sound whether built on the ground, in the ground or even under water,” Hämäläinen says.

Saariselkä Saariselkä

Design decking from side streams

At least 60% of the materials used in manufacturing UPM ProFi decking boards are recycled. Cellulose fibres and polymers from self-adhesive label material waste are given a fresh new life. Traditionally these materials would be sent to land-fill or incinerated, as there was no way to separate the paper, plastic, glue, silicon and ink.

UPM ProFi decking boards are really a sustainable solution: recycled, recyclable, having a low carbon footprint, and are toxin and pvc free. UPM ProFi boards are PEFC certified and compliant with EN 71-3, the standard for safe materials used in childrens’ toys.

Furthermore, the lignin free nature of the cellulose fibres used, means that UPM ProFi deckings won’t turn grey over time like wood and traditional WPC decks made from sawdust, bamboo or rice fibres. UPM ProFi Deck boards are available in seven stylish and fresh colours which have been inspired by Finnish nature.

Another deck revisited was the 200m2 Piano Pavilion in Lahti harbor. Built in 2008, the special colour Marble White was created after a specific request from the architect. Although as anyone with a white kitchen floor knows, white is a hard colour to keep clean. None the less, UPM ProFi Deck has stood the test of time at the Piano Pavilion where coffee, art and nature are brought together in a stunning building made from Nordic timber and innovative sustainable materials.

“The composite decking in the Pavilion has endured the harbour weather conditions well: there’s snow, ice and wind from the facing lake, and over the summer while the human visitors leave coffee spills, the birds leave their own presents on the open deck: neither have resulted in permanent marks,” says Hämäläinen. UPM ProFi decking’s non-brushed closed surface means that food and drink spills are easy to clean, and yet at the same time, the surface is tough enough to survive the busy life of a cafe or restaurant.

Matmut rugby stadium

When it comes to a challenging environment for a deck surface, the next deck revisited is one of the toughest. In the sunny weather of Lyon, Southern France, Matmut rugby stadium has a 350m2 Autumn Brown UPM ProFi Deck. Built in 2011, the deck has withstood trampling, and beer drinking of tens of thousands of rugby fans. This temporary home of the LOU rugby club has a capacity to host up to 12 000 spectators.

New decks are being installed around Europe also during the anniversary. “In addition to design, performance and recycling, our UPM ProFi deck owners appreciate the low maintenance of the deck. A regular wash is all you need to do to maintain your deck, so you’ll have more time to actually enjoy it,” concludes Aleksandra Hämäläinen.

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