The engaging graphics at the street level of the new parking garage at the Franciscan Medical Building at St. Joseph Medical Center in Tacoma, WA provide a warm welcome to arriving patients and visitors. The garage is linked to the new five-story medical office building by a skybridge. The larger-than-life people images and graphics on the exterior of the 819-stall garage were created using Dri-Design’s Perforated Imaging technology.
By varying the size, location and density of the perforations, various areas of light and dark are created to form an image on the Dri-Design panels.
Approximately 3,500 sq. ft. of Dri-Design panels were utilized on the parking structure. The .080 aluminum panels were finished in Clear Anodized, Melon Yellow, MBX Car Orange and Plum Kuchen. Dri-Design’s Perforated Imaging technology uses computer generation to develop a pattern of perforations that vary in size, location and density that when viewed from a distance appear as a chosen image or design. There are virtually no limitations on the image that can be created.
The garage is located along a “pedestrian corridor” as designated by the city of Tacoma. “The city had very specific guidelines for this corridor regarding signage and graphics,” noted Brad Hinthorne, managing principal at Perkins + Will, Seattle, the architect of record. “Several public meetings were held to get input and discuss design alternatives. We wanted imagery that would somewhat mitigate the scale of the garage while speaking to the history of the community and involving local people.”
Perkins + Will reached out to Studio SC, a Seattle-based design studio specializing in environmental graphics and identity, to help craft the “artistic graphic solution.” According to Hinthorne, Studio SC was aware of the Dri-Design system and was “pretty integral to the whole design concept and execution.”
Installation of the Dri-Design panels was done by Aldrich & Associates, Bothell, WA, the general contractor for the garage as well as the medical office building. According to George Ward, senior project manager, “We were on a pretty tight timeline to get the artwork selected. The Dri-Design folks helped the client provide the right resolution files for good reproduction. The actual installation of the panels was pretty straightforward. Dri-Design met all of the deadlines—everything went together like clockwork.”
Dri-Design panels are 100% recyclable and can be made from a variety of materials including zinc, copper, stainless steel and painted and anodized aluminum. Panels are available in any Kynar color and are sized and detailed to meet the specific requirements of each project. This cost effective system is Dade County and AAMA 508-07 approved.