A Perfect Match:
Architect and contractor work together to showcase abilities
A decision to relocate from the
suburbs to Chicago led general contractor Sumit Construction Co.
and Skokie, Ill.-based architecture firm Arzoumanian & Co., to
showcase the contractor's knowledge of the trade, says Principal
Raffi Arzoumanian, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP, at Arzoumanian &
Arzoumanian salvaged as much material as possible from the old
vehicle-emissions testing station on the lot, combining traditional
material such as brick, with contemporary metal. The resulting
two-story building features tall, angular planes, and demonstrates
both companies' commitment to sustainability, a desire for the
co-existence of old and new, and a marriage between the fine art of
masonry and the science of modern technology. Arzoumanian & Co.
also handled interior design for the project.
industrial nature of the area and the metal-clad adjacent building,
it seemed only natural to use metal cladding," says Arzoumanian.
"However, it was also important to show how metal cladding
technology has evolved through time. The juxtaposition of the old
metal system with the new told the story of its progression."
The project features 8,000 square feet of metal wall panels from
Kalzip Inc., Michigan City, Ind., chosen for their ability to meet
the architectural design criteria for the building and to be curved
to a very tight radius. Additionally, the panel profiles were
suitable for the scale and detailing the project required.
"We were looking for a combination of materials that would allow
the client to express his expertise in construction and his
commitment to sustain design and progressive thinking," explains
Arzoumanian. "The metal cladding allowed us to easily create a
dynamic, organic shape that is set against traditional brick
material. Each material addressed different elements of the
client's business-brick for its long history in construction and
metal for its flexibility, strength, progressive technology and
sustainability." The two companies have partnered together on
projects before, but this was Sumit's first office project. "The
first time, there are always minor lessons to be learned," says
Pratap Gohil, Sumit president.
The existing 10,921-square-foot single-story facility is used as
a warehouse, field offices and fleet maintenance, while the new
11,694-square-foot, two-story attached building houses the
Certified LEED Gold, the project received points for its
location close to public transportation, reusing of material from
the existing facility, reduced usage of water, green roof and open
space, water-efficient landscaping, geothermal heating and cooling
systems, and daylighting. Additionally, the project used regional
materials within a 500-mile radius, rapidly renewable materials and
materials with recycled content.
Sumit Construction Co. Headquarters,
General contractor: Sumit Construction Co.
Architect/interior design: Arzoumanian &
Co., Skokie, Ill.
Metal wall panels: Kalzip Inc., Michigan City,
2012 (c) Patsy McEnroe Photography