Terrazzo: The Colors of Possibility

Devos Children's Hospital terrazzo colors

The Colors of Possibility

Terrazzo offers nearly limitless design possibilities. By customizing colors and aggregate combinations, spaces become one-of-a-kind. Whether you are looking for intricate multi-color designs, or seamless one-color designs, terrazzo offers it all. Take a look at “The Colors of Possibility” as we showcase all the colors of the rainbow.

Terrazzo Provides Renewal

Terrazzo Provides Renewal

Terrazzo Provides Renewal

Presence Resurrection Hospital Chapel, Chicago, IL

After a devastating fire in the Chapel at Presence Resurrection Hospital in December 2014, a full restoration was required. The chapel had provided over 60 years of solace and support. Its destruction was a loss for the whole community. But out of the fire came an opportunity for renewal. It was a chance to create a new environment to provide a comfort to visitors and meet their spiritual needs.

The terrazzo design was crafted to bring unity to the space. The design has elements used throughout the chapel. The stars inlayed around the font match the over 800 stars in the astral pattern on the ceiling. The color palette complements the statuary, furnishings, and original marble used in the reredos and throughout. The straight lines mirror the leadlines of the stained glass. Even the brass divider strips carry elements that augment the gold leafing and lend continuity to the design. This timeless design creates a sanctuary that will bolster the community for years to come.

Click to view larger.

PROJECT NAME: Presence Resurrection Chapel
OWNER/CLIENT: Presence Health Network
ARCHITECT: Domenella Architects
PHOTOGRAPHY: Viken Djaferian, FotoGrafix

Terrazzo Provides Renewal

Best of NCTA 2018

Time-tested terrazzo techniques show breadth, beauty, and versatility.

Best of NCTA 2018

Breadth, Beauty, Versatility

Each year, the North Central Terrazzo Association gathers to discuss advances in technology, to refine industry techniques, and to build camaraderie across our association. We seek to make time-tested terrazzo techniques even better.

We also look back at the projects completed by our association members that show the breadth, beauty, and versatility of terrazzo flooring. Many of these projects are award-winning designs and installations, and they include hospitals, colleges, research centers, sports arenas, transportation hubs, and churches.

Join us as we celebrate some of the finest projects the contractors of the North Central Terrazzo Association have created.

Flowing Design, Welcoming Space

Warm tones and clean lines in the design create an inviting and comfortable environment.

Flowing Design, Welcoming Space

Rush Copley Hospital, Aurora, IL

When it was time for a significant expansion of the Rush Copley Hospital, they turned to terrazzo for a significant and distinct first impression. When you step through the main entrance, you immediately encounter the welcoming flooring design. The flowing lines and curves are in perfect harmony with the natural elements in the lobby. The terrazzo flows up the grand staircase providing continuity in the space. The color palette is classic and professional. The warm tones, along with the clean lines in the design, create an inviting and comfortable environment.

Click to view larger.

PROJECT NAME: Rush Copley Surgery Expansion
OWNER/CLIENT: Rush Copley Medical Centers
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: Amici Terrazzo (Elk Grove Village, IL)
ARCHITECT: Anderson Mikos Architects, Ltd
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: Leopardo Companies, Inc
PRECAST TREADS: Wausau Tile, Inc
PHOTOGRAPHY: Viken Djaferian, FotoGrafix

Flowing Design, Welcoming Space

Terrazzo: The Most Elegant Compass You’ll Ever See

terrazzo floor

Terrazzo: The Most Elegant Compass You’ll Ever See

Adventist Cancer Institute, Hinsdale, IL


When patients and visitors glance at the new terrazzo floor in the Adventist Cancer Institute in Hinsdale, Illinois, they may only notice the rich blue and green hues. But there’s much more to it than a striking design.

Earl Swensson Associates created the first floor’s colorful compass and ribbons for a practical purpose.

“The colors of the ribbons correspond with the colors of the points on the compass, which represent peace, hope, faith and love,” said Abby Weilmuenster, senior interior designer at ESa. “And while they’re decorative, they’re also way-finding (guides) for visitors and patients.”

Weilmuenster said the overall design was inspired by the Institute’s mission statement, which mentions a “compass of meaning” and “ribbons of hope.”

terrazzo floor

In turn, the ribbons flowing from the main lobby serve as guides for patients coming to the center for treatment. Terrazzo was installed in the first floor lobby and the precast treads on the monumental stairs.

“The classic, elegant look (is) something easy to maintain throughout the years,” Weilmuenster said. “It also provided a great opportunity for incorporating some of that branding into the building architecture by being able to incorporate the compass and ribbons.”

Poured in place terrazzo flooring on the first floor and precast terrazzo stair treads on the staircase were both appropriate because of durability and low maintenance.

terrazzo floor

PROJECT NAME: AMITA Health Cancer Institute & Outpatient Center
OWNER/CLIENT: AMITA Health Cancer Institute & Outpatient Center(Hinsdale, IL)
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: John Caretti & Co.(Morton Grove, IL)
(Chicago, IL)
ARCHITECT: Earl Swensson Associates, Inc.(Nashville, TN)
RESIN SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)
CHIP SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)
DIVIDER STRIP SUPPLIER: Manhattan American Terrazzo Strip Company (Staley, NC)
PRECAST SUPPLIER: Wausau Tile (Wausau, WI)
PHOTOGRAPHY: Viken Djaferian, FotoGrafix

Terrazzo Ties Together Hospital’s “Whimsical” Architecture

Terrazzo Ties Together Hospital’s “Whimsical” Architecture

How can terrazzo be installed in a busy hospital and complement its existing architectural design? Ask Kevin Rickman of Missouri Terrazzo.

Missouri Terrazzo’s major challenge on the Mercy Hospital project in St. Louis was to install at 3/8” epoxy terrazzo, in 6 colors, with multiple radius designs, in multiple phases while keeping a very busy hospital open and functioning. The 20,000-plus square-foot project was installed off and on for a three-year period.
Terrazzo Ties Together Hospital’s “Whimsical” Architecture
“Scheduling and phasing were a major part of this project,” Rickman said. “Protection was a key detail as we worked around offices, elevators, escalators, and other types of floor finishes.”

Four of the colors are mixed with a combination of size and various glass and marble aggregates. They’re separated by flowing 1/8” zinc strip that were shaped and set on site. Areas of terrazzo near the chapel had to be poured-in-place in unique shapes and designs.
Terrazzo Ties Together Hospital’s “Whimsical” Architecture
The stairs and stringers on a slight radius were installed along with a 12” high, 1” thick epoxy base throughout the project. Missouri Terrazzo had to be exact in its field templates in order to have 12 existing columns, which included precast caps, fit precisely.

Replacing an existing vinyl floor, terrazzo became the flooring finish of choice due to its longevity and ease of maintenance.

“The strip patterns and color changes flow throughout, encouraging the hospital’s visitor traffic flow and helping to tie together the varied whimsical architectural designs throughout the lobby area,” Rickman said. “The client was really excited about terrazzo and thought it was worth the effort of all involved to make this project a success.”
Terrazzo Ties Together Hospital’s “Whimsical” Architecture

PROJECT NAME: Mercy Hospital

OWNER/CLIENT: Mercy Hospital (St. Louis, MO)

TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: Missouri Terrazzo (St. Louis, MO)

ARCHITECT: Archimages (St. Louis, MO)


RESIN SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)

AGGREGATE SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)

DIVIDER STRIP SUPPLIER: Manhattan American Terrazzo Strip Co.

PRECAST BASE: Wausau Tile (Wausau, Wisconsin)

PHOTOGRAPHY: Bob Holt (St. Louis, MO)

Terrazzo Ignites Warm Atmosphere of Hospital

Terrazzo Ignites Warm Atmosphere of Hospital

Creating a sustainable, yet contemporary addition to an existing hospital requires impeccable design and diligence from architects. Skidmore Owings & Merrill Ohio LLC (SOM) rose to the challenge by enhancing Christ Hospital with a modern Joint and Spine Center that emphasizes wellness.

The 381,000-square-foot addition includes a new main entrance and concourse for the hospital; 87 patient rooms; 12 operating room; and education, outpatient, and support spaces. SOM created a warm and highly functional space, while providing a hospitable approach to the design.

Terrazzo Ignites Warm Atmosphere of Hospital

“The new patient rooms have expansive views of the city and surrounding landscapes. They are designed with the patient’s perspective in mind,” Arthur Cantwell III, associate at SOM, said. “All spaces have access to daylight and nature.”

To continue the light and airy quality of nature on the flooring, SOM’s monolithic design called for terrazzo in the public spaces. “There is no pattern other than the zinc strips that correspond with the structural grid,” Cantwell said. “We put the focus on developing a complex formula of stones, stone sizes, and recycled glass to create a visual depth. We were able to achieve the appearance of Venetian terrazzo with epoxy terrazzo.”

Because Christ Hospital wanted visitors to experience a warm environment at the Joint and Spine Center, a rift cut oak was chosen as the wood species for the addition. The color and character of the terrazzo was chosen to enhance the quality of the wood and the space as a whole.

“Both materials work together in harmony. The floor serves to enhance the continuity of the public space.” Cantwell said. “The terrazzo has a beautiful natural character while being a man-made product. It is timeless.”

Terrazzo Ignites Warm Atmosphere of Hospital

PROJECT NAME: Joint and Spine Center, The Christ Hospital (Cincinnati, OH)

CLIENT: The Christ Hospital (Cincinnati, OH)

TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: Martina Brothers (Lexington, KY)

ARCHITECT: Skidmore Owings & Merrill Ohio LLC (Chicago, IL)

GENERAL CONTRACTOR: Messer (Cincinnati, OH)

TERRAZZO MATERIAL SUPPLIERS: (Epoxy, Chips) Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)

DIVIDER STRIP SUPPLIERS: National Metal Shapes, Inc. (Delaware, OH)

PHOTOGRAPHY: Viken  Djaferian (Wausau, WI)

Terrazzo Breathes Life into New Chicago Children’s Hospital

Lurie Children's Hospital


Terrazzo has many remarkable qualities, but therapeutic is not usually at the top of the list. That might change, thanks to terrazzo’s soothing presence throughout the new Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

On the 11th floor of the 23-story, $855 million hospital, there’s a space where young patients can roam, explore, and connect with nature. Dubbed the Crown Sky Garden, it features live bamboo trees, benches crafted from locally harvested logs, fountains, and the soothing sounds of flowing water. It’s an immersive natural environment that can’t be found inside traditional hospitals.

Guiding children and their parents through the garden is vibrant, flowing terrazzo. Playful arcs of color lead them from the planters of bamboo and past the interactive benches to the southern portion of the garden, where gorgeous views of the Chicago skyline can be soaked up through 45-foot-tall bay windows.“Terrazzo is nice because of the range of material you can use in it,” said Ryan Shubin, project manager for Mikyoung Kim, the interior designer of the Crown Sky Garden. “We could add special granular elements to bring extra life to the garden, and we could also play it down when we wanted to allow the garden to shine.”Shubin also noted that terrazzo allows for dynamic curves and shapes, and it’s still remarkably easy to maintain.The Crown Sky Garden was completed in early June of this year. It has received high praise from designers and medical professionals alike for its union of fun and function. The goal was to create a place where patients can still benefit from the healing effects of nature when going outside is not possible. With the help of lively, sustainable terrazzo, that goal will be fulfilled for generations of children to come.

CLIENT: Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago
PROJECT: Crown Sky Garden and Various Floors
DESIGNER: Mikyoung Kim
ARCHITECTS: Zimmer Gunsul Frasca (ZGF), Solomon Cordwell Buenz (SCB), Anderson Mikos Architects (AMA)
TERRAZZO MATERIALS: Terrazzo and Marble Supply
METAL STRIPS & INLAYS: Manhattan American Terrazzo Strip Company

To view more terrazzo samples, visit the NCTA’s Design Gallery, or view the Terrazzo Color Palette. You can learn more about the NCTA here.

Terrazzo Flooring in Healthcare: Part of a Hospital’s Plan for Patient Healing

DeVos Children's Hospital terrazzo

Art was not an afterthought at the new Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids. It was part of the plan to promote healing its young patients and their parents—and integral to the building as a result.

The 206-bed children’s hospital features more than 600 works of art, many by local children. The building’s colorful terrazzo floors won an honorable mention at the 2011 NTMA Honor Awards.

One of the goals of the hospital was to create “a place where children would feel comfortable, happy, and hopeful, particularly when what they may be feeling as they enter the hospital is far from those emotions.”

Everywhere in the facility, which opened in January 2011, children have something cool to look at, much of it created by children. Images and colors of water, land, sky, and animals combine to create a sense of calm and healing, from the floors to the ceilings.

Terrazzo Contractor: Central Tile & Terrazzo (Kalamazoo, MI)

Architect: Jonathan Bailey & Associates, Rockwell Design  (Dallas, TX)

General Contractor: Turner/Wolverine Construction (Detroit, MI)

Owner: Spectrum Health (Grand Rapids, MI)

Aggregate Supplier: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)