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9 Best Cable Deck Railing Ideas and Designs

Cable deck railings provide safety and security for elevated decks and walkways while also adding a modern touch with sustainable materials. There are lots of cable deck railing ideas to use for your project that will complete the design and ensure that the space meets building codes — here are 9 cable deck railing ideas for your project:

1. Powder Coating Packs a Punch

The metal posts, top rails, and handrails of our cable railing systems can be powder coated in a variety of colors. At the PGA Headquarters in Frisco, TX, the CUBE™ Cable Metal Railing System’s square posts and monolithic pyramid top caps are powder coated with black for a modern contrast to the wood decking and help the railing stand out against an expansive view.

2. Provide Safety at Great Heights

According to the International Building Code (IBC), walkways that are elevated 30” or more above the floor are required to have a guardrail that has a minimum height of 42” above the walking surface. The IBC also states that guards can’t have openings that are large enough to allow a 4” sphere to pass through. This means that the spacing of cables in a cable deck railing should be close enough to prevent the passage of a 4” diameter sphere. At the Lentz Public Health Center in Nashville, TN, our CIRCA® Cable Railing System allowed them to meet all code requirements and include an elevated walkway with a view of the lower levels without compromising safety.

3. Throw a Curveball…or Just Curve the Railing

Cable railing ideas for the deck include using it on curved balconies, like this one overlooking the Texas Christian University - Lupton Stadium baseball field in Fort Worth, TX. The cable deck railing acts as a guard that is also an aesthetically pleasing way to meet the code requirements. The TEE™ Cable Metal Railing System uses concealed cable mounting hardware to create a nearly seamlessly curved railing.

4. Create Corners with a Multiline System

Because cables are flexible, in order to create a corner, the post must be located directly on the corner, but with the CUBE™ Multiline Railing System, the stainless steel tubing infill rods can turn 90o corners with ease, which means that there is a lot more flexibility in where the posts are located. At the Boeing New Everett Delivery Center in Everett, WA, this system is used to create a clean and streamlined cable deck railing.

5. Incorporate Lighting for Safety

A unique deck railing cable idea is to integrate lighting into the top rail or handrail itself. Our iRail™ LED Linear Illuminate Railings use a specially designed LED that provides full-length coverage of illumination. This was especially important for the UT Austin Moody College Skybridge in Austin, TX that spans 300’ and connects the Bello Center and the Moody College of Communication. The LED lights provide added visibility and safety for students and staff crossing the bridge at night.

6. Include Wood and Metal

Using mixed materials can add more depth to a design and this deck railing idea with cable that mixes matte black powder coated posts with an unfinished maple wood top rail at Dick’s Sporting Goods in Minnetonka, MN adds interest throughout the store. Our BLADE® Multiline Railing System is used as a guard for the balcony areas and is paired with a handrail and used on the stairways.

7. Adapt the Design to the Needs of the Space

At the Grandscape Boardwalk at The Colony, TX, our CIRCA® Picket Railing System turns deck railing ideas with cable 180o with vertical pickets, rather than horizontal cables. This system is especially desirable where the ladder effect — the idea that if something looks like a ladder, someone will climb it — is a concern. With the water being just on the other side of the railing, safety is even more important and vertical pickets allow for a nearly unobstructed view without compromising safety.

8. Create as Much Space as Possible

One of the best things about deck railing ideas with cable is that they preserve the visual connection throughout the space. Another great feature is that you can choose your mounting option — core, top, or fascia mount. At the Ross Perot Offices/Katy Trail in Dallas, TX, the CUBE™ Cable Metal Railing System is fascia mounted, so the walking surface isn’t interrupted by posts. This creates the widest walking surface possible and the cable railing doesn’t obstruct the view.

9. Establish Connections Throughout the Space

To bring stainless steel cable deck railing ideas to life, the TEE™ Cable Metal Railing System used at the Winston Salem State University in Winston Salem, NC creates a central balcony on one of their upper floors. This allows students and staff to view the lower levels to maintain a sense of connectedness throughout the building while also maintaining the highest level of safety.

Achieve Safety and Style with VIVA Railings

Designing a beautiful building that meets all safety regulations and accommodates a wide range of users is no small feat. To help achieve your safety and style goals, VIVA offers four cable railing systems and three multiline systems to bring your cable deck railing ideas to life while maintaining the highest level of safety and meeting all building codes as well as ADA requirements.

Contact the experts at VIVA Railings today to choose the ideal cable deck railing for your deck, balcony, or elevated walkway.