June 02, 2006 |

An illusion of nature

Fiber cement product lines give the appearance of quarry stone, canyon brick, and field stone in a variety of natural tones. Panels are 5/8×18×72 inches, and incorporate a thin layer of silica that self cleans the panels when it rains, or when they are sprayed with water. The silica protects the natural finish from staining, smog, smoke, and exhaust fumes.


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Trendy lighting for hotels, restaurants

Square aperture downlights, wall washers, and adjustable accent lights offer a variety of trendy design options for hospitality establishments. Electronically controlled metal halide lamps are energy efficient. Fixtures can operate at 26, 32, or 42 watts with input voltages ranging from 120 to 277 volts.

Juno Lighting Group

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Looks and feels like stucco

Stuc-O-Flex elastomeric acrylic finish is a highly resilient 100% acrylic polymer compound that looks and feels like traditional stucco. Its thermoplastic and elastomeric nature allows enhanced crack bridging ability over brown coats in traditional stucco applications. Stuc-O-Flex is available in four aggregate choices and unlimited color selection.

Stuc-O-Flex International Inc.

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For extra protection

Water-based urethane floor enamel lends a high-gloss, wet-look finish while protecting from abrasion and chemicals, as well as preserving color. Resistant to "hot tire pick up," coating maintains its adhesion and appearance in high-traffic areas.


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Ohio State sports center to open its doors

Anticipating 5,500 daily users, Ohio State University's new recreational facility, Larkins Hall, required heavy-duty door hardware to withstand the brutal pedestrian traffic. The technical solution: a variety of Dorma architectural hardware products, such as its 900 series exit devices, 8900 series surface door closers, and ED800 low-energy power operators.

Designed for high-impact applications, the exit devices feature a heavy-duty cast chassis and a reduced projection touchbar assembly to minimize catch hazards.

The 8900 surface door closers take into consideration various air flow patterns caused by separating the warm, moist air of the pool environments from cooler, drier areas, thus requiring higher spring power levels to account for added air flow. The surface door closers allowed for the spring power to be customized at each entryway.

Dorma's low-energy power operators were installed to meet barrier-free requirements for the needs of the physically challenged.

When its Dorma-equipped doors open in 2007, the new sports center will feature fitness conditioning spaces, gymnasiums, racquetball courts, swimming pools, classrooms, an adventure recreation center, and a student wellness center.


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Flooring may lead to LEED credit

Commercial flooring, manufactured from recycled rubber, provides a trendy, sandy look in a variety of color schemes, including light neutrals, rich wood tones, soft blues, and vibrant corals. Possibly qualifying for LEED credits, this flooring comes in four-foot-wide rolls, and 18×18-inch or 3×3-foot square cut tiles.


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Recycled masonry unit features terrazzo look

Trenwyth's newest sustainable, recycled masonry unit is polished and covered with a clear satin acrylic gloss to provide moisture and mold resistance and accentuate its smooth terrazzo look. The seal resists staining, abrasion, impact and chemicals. Verastone Plus units contain a significant amount of recycled content that may earn LEED Green Building Points, and they last the life of the building.


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CrossingGard balances safety and security

The CrossingGard Emergency Response Grille model ERG-IBC provides secure access control for public buildings with an auto-lock, anti-lift device, along with providing a fail-safe automatic opening response for emergency conditions. It satisfies building code requirements and is available in built-to-order configurations, materials, and finishes to meet a variety of aesthetic preferences. Push-button and annunciator alternatives are available.

Cornell Iron Works Inc.

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Fully integrated flashing system

Fully integrated flashing system combines every modern moisture control method into one five-foot flashing panel that sets into place. The TotalFlash cavity-wall drainage system by Mortar Net USA features integrated flexible flashing, stainless steel drip-edge, end dams, no-clog weep tabs, a termination bar, drainage matte, and precisely defined lap joints.

Mortar Net USA Ltd.

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Insulated panels enhance school façade

As a school committed to serving both its students and the community, Manistee (Mich.) High School was looking to achieve a dramatic architectural effect on the façade of its new building. By specifying Metl-Span's CF-36 polyurethane foam insulated panels for the building's canopy overhangs and soffits, this goal was accomplished.

Consequently, 17,000 sf of two-inch embossed, 22-gauge panels, finished in a green patina, provided a striking complement to the building's brick exterior.

"We knew we wanted an insulated panel with structural span capability specifically for the sloping soffit detail," said Dennis Bekken, VP with Design Works A/E, Grand Rapids, Mich., the architectural firm on the project. "It was a perfect application."


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You wear it well

Both durable and stylish, this new line of commercial tile is recommended for highly trafficked areas, such as healthcare facilities. Available in 16×16-inch sizes with a 1/8-inch gauge for fewer floor seams, the tiles have a high vinyl content, adjust to sub-flooring irregularities, and have a coating of wearlayer to resist against abrasions, scuffs, and scrapes. The tiles come in 20 colors within a palette of design choices, including urban, contemporary, natural, and cosmopolitan.

Tarkett Commercial

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Custom-fabricated roofing systems

Duro-Last's custom-fabricated single-ply roofing systems are designed to fit building specifications exactly. After measuring the roof surface, rooftop projections, and perimeters, contractors use Duro-Last design resources to determine the best plan for roofing the building. Roof systems are manufactured in sections up to 2,500 sf and delivered with all accessories to the job site, offering several advantages for building owners, such as reducing the likelihood of installation errors and leak problems.

Duro-Last Roofing Inc.

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Stylish soap dispenser

Luxury soap dispensers, great for casinos, hotels, restaurants, other hospitality facilities, feature a specialized stainless steel pump mechanism and solid brass construction for clog-free performance and durability. Dispensers come in six styles, including three deck-mounted, two free-standing, and one wall-mounted version.


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Clean and fresh odor control

Batteryless odor control system delivers a precise dose of fragrance and odor neutralizer without losing its intensity for a period of 60 days. With a built-in fuel cell, hydrogen is created within the fragrance chamber, thereby pushing out the appropriate amount of fragrance. The fragrance is then distributed throughout the room via natural air flow.

Technical Concepts

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Zinc and copper lend a unique look to art center

Seeking to present the new Rochester (Minn.) Art Center as a work of art itself, the center's designer called for two gallery wings—one enclosed in zinc, the other in copper—joined together by a three-story glass atrium.

The zinc-encased cantilevered gallery gives the appearance of floating atop the glass lobby while extending over a neighboring river. The copper gallery wing presents its own stylish look.

According to project architect Kara Hill, of Hammel, Green and Abrahamson, Minneapolis, zinc and copper were chosen due to their changing responses to natural light, which adds a vibrant quality to the art center.

"We selected Rheinzink [zinc] because of the relationship with the river," said Hill. "The shimmering surface of the material and the shimmering surface of the river become almost as one. Also, the zinc will darken naturally over time, and the copper will patina and lighten, the reverse of what is there now."

In all, more than 14,000 sf of titanium zinc wall panels were utilized for this $7 million, 36,000-sf project.


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Snap and click overhead

Acoustical ceiling panels, a convenient application for schools and hospitals, can be installed without removing the existing ceiling system. The patented clip, metal, or acoustical ceiling panels can be snapped onto any standard 15/16-inch metal suspension system in high-profile areas to enhance the ceiling's acoustical performance without adding a new ceiling grid.

USG Corp.

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Just click and twist with this CFL

Compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) base, appropriate for hospitality applications, deters light bulb theft via its pin-based socket. Safe socket design also prevents fingers from entering the base. The unit can accommodate 9-, 13-, 18-, 23-, and 27-watt CFLs, providing comparable light quality to incandescent bulbs from 45 to 100 watts. With a life span of 10,000 hours, this energy-efficient option can assist building owners in meeting stringent energy codes.


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Wall base allows for easy change

Demountable wall base is replaceable, reusable, and recyclable, enabling quick interior changeouts. Well suited for healthcare and educational facilities, the wall base is hung on a track without adhesives, enabling easier installation and longer life.


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Top task light in four finishes

T5 fluorescent task light fixture utilizes highly specular

reflectors for excellent light control, putting the light where it's needed. Available in white, anodized aluminum, black, and bronze, the fixture is made from extruded aluminum with die-case ends for easy installation, modularity, and a nice appearance.


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Natural light used to promote healing

Conforming to reports by the Center for Health Design that an abundance of sunlight helps reduce the average hospital stay and the amount of dispensed pain medication, the new patient tower at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Mich., chose Wausau windows and curtain wall to maximize daylight.

"The hospital was looking for a product that was triple glazed and appreciated the integral blind option [offered by Wausau's Visuline windows]," said Jennifer Macks, senior project manager for Southfield, Mich.-based Barton Malow, the general contractor. "Wausau's windows also provided large openings—bigger than what is typical of patient rooms in other hospitals—maximizing the amount of daylight each room receives."

The new six-story tower features private and semi-private patient rooms, installed with 6×6-foot operable windows, as well as 16 operating rooms. A three-story glass atrium overlooking an indoor garden brings in plenty of sunshine to the concourse below.

Wausau Window and Wall Systems

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Luminaires can add to branding

Luminaires can be utilized for up, down, or simultaneous up/down lighting in outdoor or large indoor spaces where area lighting optics are required for perimeter, egress, security, or wayfinding. Luminaires can also be used for accent lighting for branding, building identity, or landmarking purposes, in addition to achieving a nice architectural effect. Fixtures are available in 14- and 18-inch scale housings and can be specified for metal halide, high-pressure sodium, or compact fluorescents.

Kim Lighting

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Ceiling panels for hospitals, schools

Fine-textured ceiling offers good acoustics, light reflectance, and surface scratch resistance. Useful in healthcare and educational applications, these ceiling panels, which come in 2×2-foot and 2×4-foot sizes, absorb 60% of sound and 85% of light. The product resists sag, can be installed before a building is enclosed, and inhibits the growth of mildew and mold, according to the maker.

Armstrong World Industries

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CBRN rapid-responders use steel joists for new facility

The Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Responders Training Facility at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., used 253 tons of Canam midspans and top-chord single-pitched joists. The military facility provides state-of-the-art disaster training.

Canam Steel Corp.

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A touch of style, opalescently speaking

Suspension lamp with ribbed glass diffuser, a nice touch for hospitality establishments, features a patented blend of colors on an opalescent base. Opal glass is available in blue, green, and white, along with a metal canopy in polished chrome. The lamp offers an adjustable length, with a diameter of 17¾ inches at its lowest point.

Leucos USA

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Full-coverage shower

Shower panel can be adjusted for height, providing greater coverage and comfort for users of varying height. A great hospitality application, the shower system incorporates a seven-inch downpour showerhead, a two-spray hand shower, and six adjustable body sprays, plus an accessory shelf.


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Obey your thirst

Vandal-resistant water coolers, well suited for educational and healthcare applications, feature a chrome-plated, one-piece bubbler; a self-closing, single-action mechanical push button; pinned torx screws; and a satin finish that resists stains and corrosion. Fountains come in a 16-gauge galvanized frame and a 20-gauge stainless steel cabinet.


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Exterior cladding panels complement Georgia Aquarium

Not looking to build an ordinary aquarium, the architectural mission statement of the new Georgia Aquarium in downtown Atlanta was to create the engaging sensation of actually visiting an underwater world. Alcan Composites' Alucobond exterior cladding panels were chosen to create the look of a ship's hull at the aquarium's entrance.

About 50,000 sf of four-mm-thick panels were installed. The panels themselves are two sheets of 0.02-inch aluminum, thermobonded to a plastic core. Finished in platinum, silver metallic, and a custom, three-coat blue metallic, the panels offer long-term durability and easy maintenance, according to the manufacturer.

Alcan Composites

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No more slipping

Slip-retardant resilient tile has both an embossed surface to help channel away moisture and embedded quartz aggregate for better traction. Suggested for environments where the presence of moisture or foreign materials may present a slippage hazard, such as hospitals, schools, or university facilities. Tiles come in 12 different colors.

Mannington Commercial

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Almost like sunlight

Pulse-start metal halide lamp and ballast lighting systems provide crisp, accurate light output with a high color rendering index of 90+. Best for use in schools and universities, the lamps offer 90%+ lumen maintenance, are rated for 20,000+ hours, and protect against UV rays. Available in sizes from 235 watts to 775 watts.

Venture Lighting

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Nice curves

Customized curved ceiling systems, available in both one- and two-directional systems, can be specified as waved ceilings, island, vaults, and transitions between ceiling heights. System can be installed without crimping to achieve a smooth, even finish, with its perimeter revealing crisp splices and cap-free miters. Made from 90–100% recycled materials, this 100% recyclable product comes in a dozen perforation patterns in standard or custom colors, or can be installed plain for an open-plenum look.

Chicago Metallic

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Roll out the tufted carpet

By means of its tufted, textured loop, micro-engineered construction, carpeting is a great choice for highly trafficked areas, such as schools and hospitals. In addition, stain-resistant dye technology provides permanent stain and fade resistance for greater color and style options. The carpet's backing system offers a bond three times stronger than conventional latex backing, and its thermoplastic coating prevents delamination, shrinking, stretching, cupping, dishing, and doming.

Lees Carpets

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Shower trays have central, covered drain

Conoplan enamel shower trays, part of Kaldewei's Avantgarde line, are now available in 90×90×2.5-, 100×100×2.5-, and 90×120×2.5-centimeter sizes, and, on request, with shaped paneling. The drain is covered and centrally located to represent the cubist Cono design. Shower trays can be installed flush with the floor or—with shaped paneling—mounted directly onto tiled floors. They can be equipped with a self-cleaning finish by request.


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Dry hands in no time

High-speed air hand dryer dries hands in just five to six seconds—eight times faster than conventional hand dryers. A welcome addition to hospitality establishments, the machine offers improved customer and employee hygiene and reduced trash waste. With its U-shaped drying port, hands are simultaneously dried, front and back, via front and rear horizontal air jets.

Mitsubishi Electric Co.

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Fine flooring

Vinyl-enhanced tile flooring is durable, wear-resistant, stain-resistant, and anti-bacterial, and promises easy installation and low maintenance. Available in 18×18-inch color chip tiles with a three-mm gauge, the product, which comes in 16 colors, can be laid in one direction or quarter-turned.

Innovision Flooring Corp.

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Trendy tacking for the classroom

Tackable wall panels deaden sound from classroom to classroom and allow teachers to utilize the entire wall for tacking up artwork or education materials. Available in a variety of colors, panels can be attached directly to blocks or brick and contain no formaldehydes.


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