Integrated Architecture, Grand Rapids, Mich.
A derelict printing plant has been transformed into Integrated Architecture’s new headquarters. Of particular note is the care installers of the building’s exterior metal cladding took in creating the structure’s bespoke corners. Of course, when the client is also the designer, close attention to such finishing touches is an expected part of the job.
Integrated Architecture previously had been located on the outskirts of Grand Rapids but found a need for a more central location. “While our previous location was a unique piece of architecture and served us well for many years, we found ourselves needing a more efficient and flexible workplace closer to the clients and community we serve,” explains Randy Pease, AIA, director of design and a principal with the firm.
The 97-year-old former printing plant had sat empty for a decade. Design work began by targeting elements of the structure the architects wanted to retain. “The building had evolved with a collection of additions and renovations,” Pease notes. “The goal was to preserve many of its architectural elements, including large window openings, some of which had been infilled.”
The building also needed a more distinctive entry to give it a presence on the street, and the designers opted for a metal wall system for its visual appeal and the possibility its attachment system offered increased insulation. “The ribbed metal-panel system over a deep furring system created an efficient, insulated wrapper for the existing masonry building,” Pease says. “The ribbed metal wall panels were used to create texture and shadow for the façade while subtly reinforcing the horizontality of the building.”
Working with Action Roofing & Sheet Metal, the designers opted for corrugated PAC-CLAD HWP wall panels from Petersen. The job posed some challenges for Action Roofing & Sheet Metal’s team, starting with those corners.
“There was a lot of learning there because the corners were epoxy-welded,” says Dave Metcalf, Action Roofing & Sheet Metal’s owner, noting those elements started out as flat pieces that had to be fabricated in the company’s shop. “The real trick was to get the corners to look good at eye level.”
However, Metcalf had confidence in the panels. “We install a lot of Petersen products,” he notes. “PAC-CLAD is a great product. They’ve set up a great distribution network and they’re known as a premium brand. They make it easy; that’s how I want it.”
The designers and installers are enthusiastic about the finished job. “It’s a great example for our clients of adaptive reuse of a building to create a simple, modern workplace,” Pease says.
METAL WALL PANELS: Petersen