In Iowa, the new Cedar Rapids Public Library is a vibrant, multipurpose destination with spaces for the community to mix and collaborate. Commissioned to replace the previous library lost in flooding that devastated the city in 2008, the resilient structure was designed to withstand such an event. The unique architecture makes a statement that heightens the building’s presence while being easily identifiable as a library. Helping to distingush the building is Reynobond ACM cladding from Arconic Architectural Products.
OPN Architects, Inc. of Cedar Rapids layered irregularly sized panels of Reynobond ACM, finished with the Design Line Zinc Patina paint coating, in random patterns on the exterior walls of the library’s three-story wing to create a sense of depth and contrast to the smooth surface materials used on other portions of the building. “The irregularly sized zinc-colored metal panels provide an interesting visual counterpoint to the smooth, mocha-colored cement composite panels used for a portion of the library skin,” said Bruce Hamous, AIA, recently retired from OPN Architects, Inc.
According to Matt Rechkemmer of Metal Design Systems, Inc. (MDS), the project featured a non-repeating pattern of high- and low-panel projections with each panel having its own specific location. A large 5-foot panel was required for the base and smaller variations were then layered and applied in a random pattern. Lighting panels were also integrated into the panel system.
The panels were more or less a unitized assembly, which greatly reduced the number of individual panels to be installed. Architectural Wall Systems installed the Reynobond ACM in a MDSI Series 72 high-performance pressure-equalized rainscreen system. The system is non-progressive so that individual panels or lighting panels can be easily removed or replaced.
Metal Design Systems Inc. of Cedar Rapids fabricated the panel system while Architectural Wall Systems of West Des Moines, IA handled the installation. The general contractor was Knutson Construction of Cedar Rapids.
A large portion of the 14,000 sq. ft. of 4mm-thick Reynobond cladding material is accessible to library patrons enjoying the green roof garden. The use of Reynobond composite panels with the Design Line Zinc Patina finish alleviated the architects’ concern about the potential for “fingerprinting” if the project had used natural zinc. An advanced coil-coated paint finish, Design Line natural patterns and textured coatings are formulated with high-tech polymer-based resin and highly durable inorganic pigments that are ideal for all types of indoor and outdoor applications and a wide range of specialty uses.
Reynobond ACM with the Design Line Zinc Patina coating delivered exactly what the design/build team was looking for: a crisp, clean, sophisticated look and a durable and easy-to-work-with material that could accommodate a 5-foot base panel and achieve their objective of an articulated surface.
The LEED Platinum project has received numerous awards since its completion including: 2014 AIA Central States Region – Architecture Merit Award; 2014 “Best Curb Appeal” Honorable Mention – GALE “Libraries are Beautiful” Photo Contest; 2014 ASHRAE Technology Award (Midwest region); 2014 Commercial New Construction – Excellence in Energy Efficiency Design Award, Alliant Energy; 2014 Merit Award, Illuminating Engineering Society First Place; and 2014 ALA/IIDA Library Interior Design Awards – Public Libraries over 30,000 square feet – Honorable Mention.
Mark Kempf Photography, St. Louis, MO