Longevity Meets Beauty

Longevity Meets Beauty

Longevity Meets Beauty

If a project’s ideal floor is long-lasting and aesthetically pleasing, the traditional craftsmanship and artistry of the design offered by terrazzo fills the bill. Terrazzo can be used to render gorgeous designs that can outlast the buildings themselves.

The intricate and elegant construction in the convent of the Sisters of St. Francis of Perpetual Adoration, for instance, shows how a beautiful floor can stand the test of time.

Longevity Meets Beauty

Six Decades Later, Terrazzo Still Inspires

The sisters of St. Francis Convent in Mishawaka, Indiana, have been singing, congregating, and praying on the same terrazzo floors since the convent’s construction in 1950. Even with minimal maintenance, the terrazzo floors in the lobby, corridors, convent chapel, and main chapel are as awe-inspiring today as they were more than 60 years ago when they were first installed.

Designed in the tradition of the old cathedrals found in Assisi, Italy, the architecture and terrazzo flooring of St. Francis unite in a harmony of strength and beauty. The installation was a cement matrix in lieu of epoxy, and the vibrant colors—not often achieved with cement—are a testament to the many possibilities terrazzo has to offer. Within the main chapel, terrazzo continues to lead sisters along the pews and to the altar over a soft color palette accentuated with precise right angles.

Longevity Meets Beauty

Reflecting our DNA with Design

Reflecting our DNA with Design

Reflecting our DNA with Design

Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

There is no design more pure and beautiful than that of the human body. When Michigan State University looked to build their new bio-engineering facility terrazzo flooring was a natural choice – like the human body it provides perfect form and function. The project won a 2017 Honor Award from the National Terrazzo and Mosaic Association (NTMA), as well as a 2017 AIA Michigan Interiors Award.

The new 130,000-square-foot installation spans over four floors, including a stairwell that resembles an immense, colorful DNA strand. The floor design incorporates a total of 10,000 square feet of epoxy terrazzo with a starburst node pattern in five sizes scattered in a two-color pallet. The staircase, the focal point of the open atrium, consists of 168 sections of pre-cast terrazzo tread-and-riser combinations.

The artistic nature of the facility, particularly showcased in the DNA-like staircase, is designed to attract the next generation of biomedical scientists and help cultivate them into leading researchers. The building is purposefully open to inspire students to collaborate and conduct research that could change the world.

Reflecting our DNA with Design
Reflecting our DNA with Design

PROJECT NAME: Michigan State University Bio-Engineering Facility
OWNER/CLIENT: Michigan State University (Lansing, MI)
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: Michielutti Bros, Inc. (Eastpointe, MI)
ARCHITECT: Integrated Design Solutions (Troy, MI)
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: Clark Construction Company (Lansing, MI)
TERRAZZO MATERIAL SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Co. (Wheeling, IL)
DIVIDER STRIP SUPPLIER: Manhattan American (Staley, NC)
PRECAST TREADS: Wausau Tile (Rothschild, WI)
PHOTOGRAPHY: Zack Reed

Updating, while honoring the past

terrazzo flooring design joliet central high school

It’s the time of year when we reflect on the past and charge ahead into the future. With that in mind, we’ve chosen to feature the historic Joliet Central High School’s new student center. While the school’s central campus was added to the National Register of Historic places in August 1982, its student center features inspired terrazzo designs that pay homage to the original gothic architecture.

The student center is a 43,000-square-foot addition to the school’s main building and adds a new main entrance to the school. Given that marble and terrazzo were used in the original building and the later additions, using terrazzo in the student center not only offers durability and a wider color selection, it also fit in with the school’s overall design elements, said Justin Illg, the Wight & Co. architect who oversaw the project.

Notice the floor’s cross designs? They mirror columns stretching across the ceiling. The shades of gray are similar to those in the existing original building. The matrix also reflects the original building’s floors, offering a smooth transition between the old and new spaces.

“We thought carrying terrazzo into the new space would help with continuity,” Illg added. “We tried to stay true to the collegiate gothic architecture and in some ways modernize it. Terrazzo is one of the few materials where you can have the durability but also the freedom of expression.”

terrazzo flooring design joliet central high school
terrazzo flooring design joliet central high school

This project is a recipient of a 2017 NTMA Honor Award and has been recognized as Engineering News Record’s Best K-12 Education Project in the Midwest for 2016. Details of the project and the award were published in the November ENR Midwest edition.

PROJECT NAME: Joliet Central High School
OWNER/CLIENT: Joliet Township High School District 204 (Joliet, IL)
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: Menconi Terrazzo (Bensenville, IL)
ARCHITECT: Wight and Company (Chicago, IL)
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: Gilbane (Chicago, IL)
TERRAZZO MATERIAL SUPPLIER: Terrazzo and Marble Supply Co (Wheeling, IL)
DIVIDER STRIP SUPPLIER: Manhattan American (Staley, NC)
PRECAST TREADS: Wausau Tile (Rothschild, WI)
PHOTOGRAPHY: Mike Fetro, Terrazzo and Marble supply

Planes, Trains, and Terrazzo

terrazzo floor

Planes, Trains, and Terrazzo

 

Where there’s travel, there’s great terrazzo!

With its easy clean up and time-tested durability, terrazzo is the perfect material for airports and train stations. The wide color selection and material flexibility of terrazzo give designers the freedom to craft the best designs to welcome passengers as they board and exit. Not to mention that the smoothness of gleaming, polished terrazzo floors makes pulling luggage a whole lot easier.

From the rich, multi-colored nature designs at the Cleveland airport to the iconic storytelling designs of the Uptown train station in Normal, Illinois, to the vibrant, colorful flooring at the Lambert-St. Louis international airport, we’ve rounded-up some of the most captivating terrazzo travel creations that the Midwest has to offer. We hope our video will spark ideas for your next airport or train station design. We wish you happy holiday season!

Design Versatility at Your Feet: A Walking Tour

terrazzo floor

Design Versatility at Your Feet:
A Walking Tour

 

While terrazzo is often associated with durability and timeless design, its versatility makes it perfect for creating works of art at your feet.

Designers and architects have the freedom to experiment with terrazzo’s vast color palette and create any pattern they choose. Want to create bold letters in a funky font? Or direct a path by the lines laid out? Or create a mosaic look using a variety of aggregate and hues? Terrazzo does it all!

Join us and be inspired by our Walking Tour throughout the Midwest. Notice amazing art from one building to the next as you look down at your feet (and see ours too!).

Make The Right First Impression with a Crisp Entryway Design

terrazzo floor

Make The Right First Impression with a Crisp Entryway Design

 

It’s always important to make a good first impression. In a social or business situation, it starts with a smile or handshake. For a building, it starts with the entrance.

The precision of an entryway design communicates an institution’s standards, pride and culture. It lets visitors know they’re in the right place.

This month, we’ve selected sharp designs from various schools and universities that exemplify the impact of a crisp entryway design. From the bold maize at University of Michigan’s Crisler Center to the regal emblem of Notre Dame’s Eck Hall of Law, terrazzo takes detailed designs from imagination to reality.

More flexible than other flooring materials, terrazzo offers a wide color palette that can accommodate such elaborate designs while withstanding the test of time. Take a look at these gems from our gallery. We hope they spark ideas for your next entryway design.

Terrazzo Provides Pathways to Creative, Timeless Design

terrazzo floor

Terrazzo Provides Pathways to Creative, Timeless Design

 

A corridor isn’t merely a space. It’s a path between where you’re coming from and where you’re going.

For this NCTA terrazzo blog, we highlighted some of our best hallway and corridor designs to illustrate some well-designed possibilities. As you’ll see in the video, these designers and architects used color-rich terrazzo to turn the foundations of schools, hospitals and other structures into works of art beneath our feet.

“(Terrazzo) certainly offers you more freedom in terms of design options,” said Martin Wolf, SCB’s design lead on the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital. Martin pointed out that terrazzo can take numerous forms, including organic, flowing shapes.

Be inspired and take a look at the video :

Terrazzo Provides Eye-Catching Looks with Durability

Terrazzo Provides Eye-Catching Looks with Durability

 
With more than 16,000 credit and noncredit students
roaming its facilities, Malcolm X College wanted to install
flooring that would be easy to maintain despite the burden
of heavy foot traffic.

Terrazzo, offering a combination of longevity, color choices
and easy maintenance, turned out to be the ideal choice.
The higher education institution near Chicago’s West Side
liked that it can withstand heavy usage and the test of time.

Drew Deering, a project manager for Moody Nolan who
worked on the site, said the school was very specific in
what it wanted. “Durability and reduced operations,” he
said. “How easy it is to clean and maintain over time in a
school facility that’s very well used.”

While the strength and resilience of the floor is a major
selling point, the look is sure to catch your eye first. The
college selected grey and white terrazzo with a sharplooking
aggregate.

“One of our clients favored the mother of pearl aggregate,”
Deering said. “That gives it the [sparkle].”

Pre-manufactured terrazzo was used for the vertical
installations on the grand stairs to maintain the terrazzo
look, but the rest of the terrazzo was installed in the first
floor lobby, near the college’s elevators and in an upper
level seating area.

Though the colors are muted, they work in terms of
longevity, and the use of terrazzo within the long hallways
and corridors created a clean, uniform look.

“We had very long hallways,” Deering said. “Some are
100 feet long, so it gave a great visual effect of having one
solid material going along those corridors. You can always
repaint walls, but you can’t always redo floors.”

Terrazzo Provides Eye-Catching Looks with Durability

PROJECT NAME: Malcolm X College
OWNER/CLIENT: City Colleges of Chicago
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: Menconi Terrazzo (Bensenville, IL)
ARCHITECT: Moody Nolan (Chicago, IL)
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: CMO Joint Venture – Clark Construction, McKissack & McKissack, and Old Veteran Construction
TERRAZZO MATERIAL SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)
DIVIDER STRIP SUPPLIER: Manhattan American Divider Strip Company (Staley, NC)
PRECAST TREADS AND CUSTOM BASE: Wausau Tile (Wausau, WI)
PRECAST BASE: Terrazzo and Concrete, Inc. (Chicago, IL)
PHOTOGRAPHY: Mike Fetro, Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)

Terrazzo Provides Eye-Catching Looks with Durability

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)
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: Bulley & Andrews LLC
(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

Salvation Army Chooses Terrazzo for Durability and Gloss

terrazzo floor

Salvation Army Chooses Terrazzo for Durability and Gloss

Salvation Army, Hoffman Estates, IL

 

After being pleased with terrazzo at a Chicago building, Major Cheryl Lawry chose terrazzo again for the Salvation Army Illinois office.

The Salvation Army’s main office in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, now has 15,000 square feet of terrazzo flooring in white and gray. “Terrazzo is in our main entryway and in our dining room and gives the space a professional look,” Major Lawry added.

When Major Lawry used the flooring in the dining hall at the College for Officer Training at 700 W. Brompton Ave., the flooring stood up to the test of children, one of whom spilled Kool-Aid on the floor the first day it was installed. After witnessing its durability, it made sense to Major Lawry to use the terrazzo in the headquarters, too.

“I told a co-worker we’d be steam cleaning the next day if we hadn’t chosen terrazzo,” said Major Lawry.

Installing the terrazzo came with challenges typically incurred in older buildings, but overall the process went smoothly, said Lisa Smith, project manager (retired) at Wright Heerema Architects.

terrazzo floor

In addition to the main entryway, atrium area and dining hall, terrazzo was installed on the staircases on the third and fourth floors and in the elevator lobbies.

Of particular note is the poured in place terrazzo reflection fountain on the first floor. Poured in place terrazzo is a beautiful and simple answer to provide a decorative finish to the reflection fountain’s concrete substrate.

The exterior of the building was black before, so the white flooring really brightened up the space, Smith said. “The white floors really helped to bring the light in,” Smith said.

“It makes a nice statement when you come in,” Major Lawry said. “We have a long entrance hallway, so when you walk in, you can see the wonderful shine of the terrazzo floors.”

PROJECT NAME: The Salvation Army
OWNER/CLIENT: The Salvation Army (Hoffman Estates, IL)
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: John Caretti & Co.(Morton Grove, IL)
ARCHITECT: Wright Heerema Architects (Chicago, IL)
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: Interior Construction, Inc.(Chicago, IL)
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