Project Profiles: Retail & Mixed Use

Arc’teryx, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Custom panels, installed on a diagonal, along with natural granite to symbolize the nearby mountain horizon, highlight this Canadian store.

Custom panels, installed on a diagonal, along with natural granite to symbolize the nearby mountain horizon, highlight this Canadian store.

Retrofit Team

Architect and Construction Manager: Unison Construction Management Ltd., Vancouver
Zinc Installer: Ace Copper Specialists, Surrey, British Columbia
Zinc Distributor: Alesther Metal Distributors Ltd., Burnaby, British Columbia

Materials

Custom RHEINZINK panels, installed on a diagonal, along with natural granite to symbolize the nearby mountain horizon, highlight the retailer’s largest Canadian store.

Zinc for the exterior was inspired by Arc’teryx itself, according to Ehsan Vali, Unison Construction Management’s lead designer on the project. “A lot of their products rely on metal components,” he says. “I knew I wanted to use metal, and zinc caught my attention early on. I discovered that the nearby mountains contain significant deposits of zinc and copper. And I came across different pictures of actual raw zinc and noticed the very linear, angular, clear lines with a bit of sheen. We quickly settled on RHEINZINK as the right material to deliver the ‘cool’, modern aesthetic to complement the brand.”

Approximately 2,000 square feet of custom RHEINZINK panels were fabricated and installed. “I wanted a fabricator and installer that could do an art piece,” Vali says. “Ace did a fantastic job. We’re very pleased with the outcome.”

Paul Dore, president of Ace Copper Specialists, worked closely with Vali in designing the 24- by 48-inch custom RHEINZINK graphite-gray panels. The mountain-inspired architectural design called for the RHEINZINK panels to be installed on the diagonal and wrapped around a sharp 90-degree corner. “To further complicate the job, the cap line at the roof was at a slightly different angle than the angle of the shingles,” explains Jason Dore, Ace Copper Specialists’ chief operating officer. “We hand-fabricated all of the top shingles onsite. The designer didn’t want seams when we wrapped the panels around the corner. The installation had to be perfect to keep the angles all in place. The job was a challenge but turned out to be really striking.”

RHEINZINK also was used on the interior as infill material for various racks and product display areas.

Zinc Panel Manufacturer: RHEINZINK

The Retrofit

The retail chain, founded by local climbers in 1989, offers high-performance outdoor equipment and clothing. The chosen building for this location previously was two adjoining linear structures that required major renovation to meet design objectives. “We demolished a significant portion of the front of the building and reconstructed it to increase support for the façade height that was added,” Vali explains. “It was a big challenge for our structural engineers. And we had to bring the building up to code in all disciplines—it was quite complicated for what you would expect from a 4,000-square-foot building.”

Photos: RHEINZINK

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