According to Nat Stein, project architect for Uihlein-Wilson, the design team wanted to stay true to the setting of the campus, located high on a bluff overlooking the Fox River, by using a great deal of wood in the school’s new campus center. They also wanted to attain LEED® certification.
He explains the design team decided on an open plenum look to maintain a sense of height in the building. However, they knew they also wanted to break up views of the exposed mechanical systems by adding cleaner lines in the ceilings.
Two different styles of WOODWORKS ceiling systems from Armstrong, both of which are FSC-certified and contribute to LEED Materials & Resources Credit 7.0 (Certified Wood), were selected for the center.
WOODWORKS Tegular panels were installed in 6-foot-wide ceiling clouds in the center’s café. “We knew the students wanted something attractive in this space, so we definitely wanted to use wood here,” Stein notes.
The same panels were used in a coffered ceiling in the center’s meeting area. “This is the most finished space in the building,” Stein adds. “As a result, we wanted a more upscale visual and still continue the look of wood.”
To provide sound control, the panels are perforated and backed with an acoustical fleece. When perforated, WOODWORKS panels have a Noise Reduction Coefficient (NRC) of 0.65, meaning they absorb 65% of the sound that strikes them.
WOODWORKS Linear planks were used in the ceiling clouds in the center’s main corridor and great room. “We went with a linear form in these clouds to replicate the tongue-and-groove style of the building’s wood structural system,” Stein notes.
As a result of the design team efforts, the facility was awarded LEED-NC Gold, and is the first higher education building in Wisconsin to achieve this level of recognition