The Customer Experience Center (CEC) at the GE Advanced Manufacturing Works in Greenville, SC not only showcases the history, progression, and manufacturing advancements of the GE brand, but also hosts a multitude of corporate events. As a result, the design team at MCA Architecture in Greenville looked to create a multi-functional open space that was both dynamic and energetic.
To meet the design intention, the team selected Formations™ acoustical clouds from Armstrong® Ceiling Solutions. Available in 19 shapes and sizes, Formations cloud systems consist of 2’x 2’ ceiling panels with factory-finished, pre-cut corners, and a kit containing all the pre-cut-to-length, ready-to-assemble suspension system and perimeter trim components required to create the cloud.
The kits include StrongBack™ carrying channel which eliminates 40% of the cables, minimizing visible hangar wires. As a result, kits assemble and install up to 50% faster than stick-built clouds. In total, 53 circular clouds ranging in diameter from 6 feet to 14 feet were installed in the CEC.
In total, 53 Formations circular acoustical ceiling clouds ranging in diameter from 6 feet to 14 feet were installed in the CEC.
Met Design, Schedule, Budget Requirements
According to project architect, Michael Kissam, the Formations ceiling system was selected for several reasons. “First,” he says, “we were looking for a ceiling treatment that was not static or overbearing but evoked a sense of movement, dynamism, and progression.
“Second, we were under an extremely aggressive schedule that had to be completed in nine months from design start to customer occupancy. The Formations cloud kits provided a unique advantage because the clouds could be fabricated on ground level and raised to their finish elevations at the last possible moment. This installation sequence allowed for the necessary overhead utility work to be completed while mitigating the ceiling grid and tile damage that is a reoccurring problem for typical project close-outs.
“Last, we needed a cost effective ceiling system that could meet the design intent, construction schedule, and budget,” he adds. “The Formations cloud kits delivered on all fronts.”
Aesthetics, Acoustics Key Considerations
Kissam notes that the project aesthetic was an important consideration as well because the space is a showcase for GE and its worldwide customers. “The finished product and function of the Formations acoustical clouds exceeded our design intention and, more importantly, the customer’s expectations,” he states.
He also reports that because the CEC is designed to accommodate a variety of different functions, the acoustics of the space had to be multifarious. “The majority of the surfaces are glass walls and ceramic tile flooring, so the ceiling system was our only opportunity to control the acoustics,” he explains. “By layering and overlapping the clouds, the ceiling system created a baffling effect that proved to be highly effective.”
For additional information on Armstrong Formations Acoustical Clouds, visit armstrongceilings.com/formations.