September 28, 2020

LBM Bar Expands for Safe Reopening

The City of Lakewood has approved the first parklet for our friends at LBM Bar and we couldn’t be happier to see it materialize! The pandemic has presented small businesses, restaurants & bars with many challenges to enable social distancing while maintaining service, and we are thankful to have assisted LBM with their expanded seating proposals and navigating the public approval process. Our goal was to help LBM reach Pre-Covid seating numbers to ensure the return of full wait staff in a safe and healthy manner illustrating phased plans that enable a full return to service in a manner that helped working with the City. The collaborative effort between Eric Ho of LBM, building owner/developer Frank Scalish, Bialosky Cleveland, and public officials exemplifies how positive outcomes come from working together and celebrating our unique skill sets.

July 2, 2019

InfoComm 2019 Recap

The modern practice of architecture involves a blend of art, design, engineering, building science, sustainability, and technology. When touring our office for the first time, visitors may assume that the “technology” side of architecture is about utilizing a well-thought-out mix of the latest design, visualization and presentation software, keeping abreast of mobile technologies, implementing “maker” tools and hardware, and the like. However, our team feels that technology “tools” are just one part of the equation. Technology in architecture is more encompassing. As we strive to design buildings and spaces that are inspiring, welcoming, beautiful, and functional, we often incorporate technology to foster such experiences. The development of audio-visual technologies, augmented and virtual reality systems, Artificial Intelligence (AI), distance learning technologies, E-sports broadcasting and presentation systems, as well as collaboration and conferencing platforms, continues to move ahead quickly. This year’s InfoComm show, attended by over 44,000 people from the U.S. and abroad, was proof of that. The Audiovisual and Integrated Experience show was held at the Orange County Convention Center, in Orlando, Florida, and had over 150 educational sessions and about 930 exhibits for Design Creatives and AV pros to consider. I've highlighted just a few technologies & an educational session to provide you with a brief glimpse of this year's show.

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LG, Sony, Epson, and many others manufacturers had eye catching booths to show off their impressive technologies. My guess is that LG’s Transparent OLED signage will capture the attention of Retail and Hospitality clientele.

Crystal LED Display System by Sony Electronics, Inc.

Close-up view of a curved modular framing system for LED displays, by beMatrix. LED displays that appear to be bending along a modular system's radii.....does that spark your creativity?

Looking for a large curved display, but need it to show vivid color and deep contrast? Then your eyes may have focused on LG's Fine Pitch LED Curved Display

....or LG's Curves of Nature OLED Display

Multi-View 4K 3-D Simulation Projector, by Digital Projection. Each participant's view of the imagery is adjusted to match his perspective, as the participant changes position.

Multiple projectors + Sculpture + Projection Mapping + Video Content = Eye Catching Display

 

Exhibit Hall:  Technologies for Huddle Spaces

Several Exhibitors showcased collaboration and presentation solutions for corporate and educational use.  Will you see the latest round of these technologies incorporated into your workplace?

Session: AV/IT Design with LEED - How Sustainability and AV Design Can Contribute to Successful Projects

Sustainability and AV?  Yes!  Legrand AV presented an informative course on how the AV Industry is focusing on sustainability.  If you were wondering how this is possible, then visit LeGrand AV’s website for information about AV installations and LEED v4.0 certification.

As current technologies continue to develop and gain appeal, you can be sure that creative Architects, Engineers, AV Pros, and Designers will collaborate to incorporate these trends into the buildings we visit, read about, work in, and enjoy.

 Cliff is a Registered Architect, a LEED BD+C accredited professional, and is Director of Technology at Bialosky Cleveland

April 1, 2019

Graffiti: How a Vibrant Facade Came to Bring a Sense of Place

Constraints often create the best opportunities for design. When the owners of Graffiti and Legend asked us to re-design their Midtown storefront, the constraints were fairly evident. Some were typical, like budget and constructability, while others were more unique, like providing daylight to a retail store that requires a high level of security. Ultimately, these constraints drove the design and allowed us to create a unique storefront that brings a vibrant flash to the Midtown neighborhood while remaining true to the identity of its owners.

An Opportunity for Design

Existing Physical Conditions

The façade consisted of original brick masonry partially covered over as part of a renovation made up of tile and fiber-reinforced panels done in the 1980s. These renovated materials would be difficult to remove without potentially destroying the underlying brickwork, so we made the decision to simply leave them in place and paint all existing materials a single color to help unite them. We then covered them further with a perforated metal panel supported by an aluminum frame. The form is thus directly influenced by the existing constraints.

In Process South Elevation

Property Lines

The storefront sits directly adjacent to the city-owned sidewalk, meaning the aluminum support frame for the metal panel cannot engage the ground since it would cause potential issues for sidewalk replacement and plowing. Because of the existing facade materials, the frame had to be light enough to carry the new additional weight. The solution was to create smaller individual frames that could be installed independently and tied together laterally. The majority of these frames ended up being four feet wide, which precisely matched the dimensions of the perforated metal panels, meaning less material had to be wasted which is always a bonus.

Frame Attachment Detail:  A. Overview  B. Frame to Existing Wall  C. Frame to Frame

Security

Prior to our design, motorized grilles covered all of the windows and were rarely opened up during the day, meaning minimal daylight was reaching the offices and showroom. The perforated panels offer a unique solution as they cover the windows completely, allowing the security grilles can remain open at all times, while the perforations are sized in a way that permits ample daylight to fill the interior. Tamper-proof screws add an additional level of security, ensuring the panels can’t be removed without specialized tools.

Visual Interest

Physical conditions, property lines, and security concerns are contributing factors to the design process, but the aesthetic of the finished product must still stand out and support the vibrant brands. After all, the name of the business is Graffiti!

 

In Process South Elevation with Metal Frame Detail

The concept was to integrate a city-themed graphic that would evoke the very heart of the business’s ethos: provide great product and service, right here in Cleveland.

We considered several options for painting or coating the metal panels. Printing directly onto the metal was an early idea, but the process proved too difficult as the perforations and size of the panels would make it hard to achieve a clean finished product that can withstand weather and time. We ultimately decided it would be interesting to treat the perforations as pixels and layer something colorful and vibrant behind the metal panel. We printed a graphic onto a vinyl material that was then wrapped over a thin aluminum composite panel. Prior to being wrapped, the aluminum panel was CNC routed to match the shape of our choice, the Cleveland skyline. These colorful panels were then “sandwiched” between the perforated metal panels and the aluminum frame, holding them in place. This method ensures longevity compared to printing directly onto the perforated metal panel while the layering provides further protection from UV light.

 

A Vibrant Solution

The solution to our constraints ended up providing more than we could have hoped for, as it allows the appearance of the façade to change as light hits the surface. At times, the grittiness of the metal panel stands out, while at others the graphic shines brighter.

Small projects can be challenging to find design inspiration, but by listening to the client’s needs, and understanding the design constraints, we realized that simple solutions have a huge impact.

For more information about the project, visit the project page.

February 11, 2019

Future Offices – Winter Event Recap From NYC

A few weeks ago I visited New York City while attending the Future Offices Winter Event to learn about the drivers influencing the workplace.  We know that workplace design matters and can positively impact the level of engagement employees exhibit through my article in Smart Business Magazine. Through my few days there, a number of common themes arose.

Panel Discussion Hosted During the Event.

Employee Experience:

The word, “experience” is all the buzz across a variety of sectors. Retailers are focusing on how to create a memorable experience for shoppers, to incentivize them to shop in store rather than online. Universities are focusing on enhancing the college experience to attract students. The modern office is no different. Understanding the value of human capital when it comes to the costs of doing business, employers are focusing on improving the experiences of their employees in order to attract and retain the top talent. Employers are prioritizing food offerings, wellness activities, training, and professional development.  Additionally, companies are looking for ways other than amenities to engage employees.

Internet of Things:

With the evolution of connected devices in our homes, employees now expect to see these products at work too. Mobile phone apps will remind us when to adjust sit-to-stand desks. Automated package delivery systems will send messages when packages arrive, minimizing or eliminating the need for a staffer to deliver packages to your desk. Meeting rooms will be assigned based on appointment criteria, rather than scouring our calendars for open rooms. Plants will notify us when they need water with sensors. The possibilities are endless with the goal of minimizing administrative work allowing us to do our jobs more efficiently.

Coworking vs. Flexible Office Space:

Coworking space started out as a way for solo entrepreneurs and start-ups to have a professional environment to work and meet. While this need still exists, flexible office space has entered the market from traditional coworking providers and new providers. Flexible office space is personalized and branded within a building with shared amenities, facilities management, and shorter lease terms.

While this type of space is becoming the norm in larger cities for both small organizations and as an enterprise solution, it’s unclear to me at this time how prevalent it might become in the Cleveland market. If you have experience with this model, I’d love to talk to you for a future blog/article I am writing.

Brooklyn Bridge - New York, NY

Oculus at the World Trade Center - New York, NY

The event was thought-provoking and inspiring in many ways.  As was the city of New York itself.  I extended my visit for a short retreat with my husband and was awed once again by this amazing city! My favorite new stops were the Oculus and One World Trade Center as well as walking across the Brooklyn Bridge.

February 23, 2018

Volunteering With Coworkers Brings Benefits Back to the Workplace

Curious how sharing your donated time with coworkers can impact your community, workplace, and overall wellbeing? Jen Brennan tackles this topic in her article for Crain's Cleveland Business magazine.

Read the whole article here:
http://www.crainscleveland.com/article/20180223/blogs05/152901/volunteering-coworkers-brings-benefits-back-workplace