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  Function Meets Design Using Iron Bollards As Architectural Elements
Incorporating iron bollards into architectural design enhances the building's overall presence and appeal.

Architectural design has changed dramatically throughout history. The curved buildings of the Baroque period, English-inspired colonial architecture, Gothic style, Modern/Post-Modern architecture, and other era-specific designs have their own unique elements of beauty and style. However, beginning with the Industrial Revolution, one thing that has been consistent is the use of iron in decorative and design elements of many buildings.

There has been tremendous interest in the preservation of historic architecture over the past two to three decades, coupled with a resurgence of interest in early iron and metal's preservation, it's restoration, and it's reproduction as an art form worth sharing with future generations. This appreciation generated early ironwork restorations, and today it stimulates new works that incorporate the quality in design and workmanship typical of the craftsmanship of the past. Both domestic and offshore foundries with production experience in custom iron castings can reproduce architectural iron castings from drawings or as re-productions salvaged from original pieces. Today, a wide range of architectural metalwork is available from small iron details and features to large architectural works of steel, ductile iron or aluminum. Bollards, tree grates, lamp standards, bike racks, and even park benches are all examples of architectural ironwork and metalwork that is widely seen throughout the architecture of most towns and cities today.

Since the 17th century, iron bollards have been used within towns and cities for a variety of purposes. These approximately 3-foot-high posts provide barriers, define boundaries, increase safety and direct traffic flow. Iron bollards are not simply functional, but they can actually improve the overall architectural appeal of a building.

Here are three examples of how iron bollards can work in your architectural project:

Provide Authenticity:
When restoring or giving a facelift to a building with historical significance, iron bollards can be constructed to reflect the time period in which the building was originally designed. The bollards will support the overall look and feel of the restoration project, whether they are situated close to the actual builidng, or as a surrounding landscape element.

Give Visual Appeal:
There are many bollard colors, sizes and decorative options to choose from in the market, so architects can select bollards that are cohesive to the design qualities of the building. Bollards don't have to appear as an after-thought to the architecture, instead they can provide enhancement.

Define the Landscape:
The land surrounding the building is as critical to design as the building itself. Iron bollards can play a critical role in defining the landscape and the flow of traffic around it. Gardens, common areas, and pathways can easily be identified and protected, without seeming intrusive, using decorative iron bollards.

Whether your building is contemporary, traditional or period-specific, bollards allow you to make selections that boost the overall impression of the architecture. Bollards can provide functional opportunities as well; whether they are removable, retractable, flexible or permanent - the variety of bollard options available today provide a limitless array of decorative and functional property enhancements.

Reliance Foundry has been a family-owned business since 1927. Iron bollards are one of its main product lines, along with industrial wheels, bike parking products and investment castings. Reliance sources products globally and offers quick and convenient delivery in the United States and Canada from its Vancouver location. Visit Reliance Foundry's bollard product gallery to see their entire selection of bollard products.

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