Project: NOAA National Logistics and Reconditioning Center
Location: Grandview, MO
Architect: Burns & McDonnell, Kansas City, MO
The NOAA National Logistics and Reconditioning Center is responsible for the repair of all the radar systems and other forecasting equipment used by the National Weather Service’s stations around the world. Originally located in a facility built in the 1930s, the Center is now housed in a newly constructed 238,000 sq. ft. building.
At the new facility, the main conference room is used to host everything from briefings and training sessions to tour groups and national meetings. As a result, the design team felt it was important to create a space that would not only embody the Center’s mission but also provide the staff with a space they could be proud of.
“We wanted to create a space that would leave a lasting impression of the facility,” states senior interior designer, Rhonda Hulkill, “and the best opportunity for making an impression is the ceiling.”
Working in collaboration with the YOU INSPIRE Solution Center at Armstrong Ceiling Solutions, the design team achieved its goal by creating a ceiling featuring custom 2' x 4' Armstrong METALWORKS RH215 ceiling panels with METALWORKS trim installed diagonally across the room in a herringbone type of pattern. The result is a visual reminiscent of lightning bolts coming down from the sky. A six-inch gap separates each of the lightning bolts, while soft blue fluorescent lighting behind the ceiling panels symbolizes the sky and adds even more interest to the ceiling visual.
All of the panels are perforated and backed with an acoustical fleece to provide sound absorption in the room. “Considering the multiple uses of the space, acoustical performance was a key consideration,” Hulkill states.
The METALWORKS ceiling panels were chosen because of their durability and reflectivity. “We wanted a certain amount of reflectance to extend the blue light into the room and give the space more life. This effect would not have been possible with standard acoustical ceiling tile,” explains associate architect, Vicky Borchers. “Because the panels are floating, we also wanted sharp, crisp edges since they are visible.”
And as far as making an impression, Borchers says the conference room has become the facility’s signature space. “It is definitely the space everybody remembers and also the first place the staff takes everyone.”
“The finished product and function exceeded our design intention and, more importantly, the customer’s expectations,” he states.