I was out looking at the remains, and I think what happened was that the wood on the columns deteriorated due to moisture. So a load that it might have taken ten years ago just separated the wood. The bolts holding the bottom end are still in the metal brackets.
I’m not opposed to a structural ‘fuse’, so that things break at expected points, but in general, I think I’d rather just make sure it stays together.
We have quite a variety of skills in the club, and I doubt I’m the most qualified to design a new building.
I’ve looked at prefabbed steel buildings in the past, but they’re pretty pricey. How that compares with the time/money we’d spend designing/fabricating our own I dunno. They’re generally designed like pole barns, which wouldn’t be bad, giving a large clear span, but they have many posts along each side. That’s not so bad for a barn, or on the windward side, where I want to put a wall anyway, but on the east side I’d like a big free span as well.
If we could get a prefab roof and put it on some big trusses spanning the length of the concrete with only a few support columns, that might be good.
Google “steel carports” to see the kind of thing I was looking at.
Looking at what’s gone, though, if there was a solid wall between the two sets of steps, and we didn’t replace the south sink (since there’s still a sink in the kitchen area), the unobstructed shade area at each end of the container could be much bigger.