Prior to Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the Louisiana Army National Guard Readiness Center was based at the New Orleans Lakefront Airport. But in the aftermath of the storm, which caused damage to many structures there, the Guard decided to seek higher ground. Choosing the Northshore Regional Airport in Hammond as a suitable new site, it commissioned the Broadmoor Design Group of Metairie, Louisiana, to design a new readiness center with the capacity to serve as the main Army National Guard aviation hub for emergencies occurring anywhere in the southeast part of the state.
Completed in August 2008, the key element of the new $35 million facility is a three-story, 97,611 sq. ft. administration building. It and its adjacent support buildings cover about a fifth of the 56-acre Guard campus.
The readiness center combines strength with sustainable qualities and good looks. Utilizing precast and cast-in-place concrete construction, it is designed to resist progressive collapse and meet ATFP standards. It also was assigned the U.S. Army’s SPiRiT Gold rating, which is comparable to LEED certification. Used in conjunction with the concrete was Reynobond ACM (aluminum composite material) from Alcoa Architectural Products of Eastman, Georgia.
NOW Specialties of Carrollton, TX fabricated and installed the 24,827 sq. ft. of 4mm-thick Reynobond material. The Bright Silver Metallic Colorweld® 300XL finished-panels were used on the building’s soffits, facades, column covers and eyebrows.
The main building serves as the administrative headquarters for the 244th Command Aviation Battalion and the 204th Air Traffic Services Group. It houses administrative and recruiting offices, classrooms, a full kitchen, assembly area, locker rooms and a 5,000 square foot fitness center and jogging track. It also includes concrete vaults for the storage of ammunition and weapons, a work bay building, a vehicle wash facility, storage facility and a 10,000-gallon fuel point operations area.
Broadmoor Design Group of Metairie, LA, also served as the general contractor for the project.
Alcoa Architectural Products’ wide span of products offers a complete range of exterior and interior cladding and corporate identity solutions. The company’s family of products includes innovative materials such as new Anodized Reynobond ACM, Reynobond Wood Grain ACM and Reynobond with KEVLAR®, in addition to classic Reynobond ACM, Reynobond Natural Metals, and Reynolux® profiled panels, flat sheet and coil. Al Architectural Products is a business unit of Alcoa, the world’s leading producer of aluminum products.