Gateway Arch Museum Stands on Multi-Level Terrazzo Floors

Gateway Arch Museum Stands on Multi-Level Terrazzo Floors

Gateway Arch Museum Stands on Multi-Level Terrazzo Floors

Gateway Arch, St. Louis, MO

The Gateway Arch National Park Museum and Visitor Center is a soaring symbol that manifests the starting point of westward expansion. The mezzanine level floor incorporates the perfect image to match the Arch’s grandeur: a map of the United States depicting the major rivers, lakes, mountain ranges, and expedition trails of westward expansion. That map was created with 4,200 square feet of epoxy terrazzo using more than 10 colors.

Gateway arch photo 2_edited

The renovation and expansion was intricate. The project had just about every possible element of terrazzo, including Venetian marble, more than 52,000 square feet of sand cushion terrazzo in two colors, an epoxy map, precast steps, precast base, and a poured-in-place base. There were also significant challenges: staging was tough since the park remained open during the renovation. More than one million pounds of sand had to be brought in while also removing tons of earth. And the job was in a national monument, with accompanying heavy security.

Gateway arch photo 8_sm

“We are all proud to have worked on a project of this magnitude,” says Paul Berra of Missouri Terrazzo. “The finished product of this beautiful, durable terrazzo floor ties together the renovated original museum section and the new entry level, mezzanine level, and museum area with a bright, long lasting, timeless terrazzo floor.”

Gateway Arch Museum Stands on Multi-Level Terrazzo Floors

PROJECT NAME: The Gateway Arch National Park Museum and Visitor Center
OWNER/CLIENT: National Park Service/US Department of Interior
ARCHITECT: Cooper Robertson & Partners
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: McCarthy Building Company
TERRAZZO MATERIAL SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies
DIVIDER STRIP SUPPLIER: Manhattan American- Terrazzo Strip Company
PHOTOGRAPHY: David Laudadio

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.

Early Education

Early Education Hard Facts terrazzo

Children and their education are our future. The schools they attend must provide them with safety, support, and inspiration. This means longevity, durability, and sustainability are necessary components of the building’s design. Terrazzo flooring is ideal for this.

The inclusion of school logos, mascots, and colors in terrazzo flooring adds charm and excitement and rouses school spirit among students, faculty, and staff. As no two terrazzo floors are the same, schools know their floors display spirit and pride in a uniquely beautiful way.

Because of the thousands of feet that will pass over the floors, schools need to be certain the flooring will deliver the longevity and sustainability they need, all with minimal maintenance costs. As the wear on terrazzo is excellent and it is among the easiest flooring options to maintain, it provides schools with a hassle-free foundation.

In early education, the key is to inspire, energize, and intrigue students throughout the school day. The vibrancy and flexibility of terrazzo designs help to promote active thinking and learning in young minds.

Today, we not only think about educating children, but also how to keep them as healthy as possible. We often worry about the spreading of germs, especially in schools. Epoxy terrazzo is anti-microbial in many ways, as it doesn’t allow for the growth of bacteria or mold. This makes it perfect for education facilities around the country.

In this edition of Hard Facts, we take a look at some examples of how design and sustainability combine to create some truly inspiring schools.

Crossroads Elementary Hard Facts terrazzo
Crossroads Elementary School, KY

At Crossroads Elementary, the design was simple – color everywhere. From the paint on the walls to the terrazzo throughout the school, twelve different bright and bold colors promote active thinking and learning.

“The ease of using colors to make for very distinctive floors that is particular to the school is very appealing,” Anna Tatman of Rosa Mosaic Tile & Terrazzo said.

The colors used on the walls and on the floor of Crossroads not only serve as learning tools, but as directional markers as well. Each grade was assigned a color for the columns and walls at the entrance to its wing. The flexibility of terrazzo allowed for the color to be continued on the floors, leading children to their appropriate classrooms.

“They’ve created an energetic learning environment. Colors tend to make our brains active and they instill in us various reactions,” Tatman said. “They were able to use these colors to create a very active learning space. It’s a wonderfully exciting, bright, and active space.”

PROJECT: Crossroads Elementary School (Mount Washington, KY)
CLIENT: Bullitt County Public Schools
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: Rosa Mosaic & Tile Company (Louisville, KY)
ARCHITECT/DESIGNER: Clotfelter/Samokar, PSC (Lexington, KY)
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: F.W. Owens Co. Inc (Louisville, KY)
TERRAZZO MATERIAL(S) SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)
DIVIDER STRIPS SUPPLIER: Manhattan American Terrazzo Strip Company (Staley, NC)

PHOTOGRAPHY: David Laudadio

Paducah Middle School Hard Facts terrazzo

Paducah Middle School, KY

Completed in 2013, Paducah Middle School is a brand new facility for 6th, 7th, and 8th graders in the Paducah Public Schools system. Kevin Rickman of Missouri Terrazzo said terrazzo was chosen for the hallways, lobby, and cafeteria of the new construction because of its durability and longevity.

At the entrance to the building is the school’s logo, a 24-foot blue Fighting Tornado. Consisting of nine colors, the logo depicts a Fighting Tornado armed with a book and pencil, ready to learn. The logo also features a compass, with a degree marker pointed towards Paducah Tilghan High School to remind the children of success and moving forward. Above the logo, the words “academic excellence” are surrounded by yellow stars.

“That’s to remind the students to reach for the stars with all their academic and personal lives,” Rickman said. “They really put a lot of thought into the design pattern to remind the kids to go above and beyond.”

The hallways on both the first and second floors feature a white epoxy with an accenting radius border of blue epoxy.  Within the white epoxy are 120 1 ft. high blue epoxy Fighting Tornadoes, promoting school spirit throughout the building.

PROJECT: Paducah Middle School (Paducah, KY)
CLIENT: Paducah Public Schools
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: Missouri Terrazzo (St. Louis, MO)
ARCHITECT: RBS Design Group Architecture (Owensboro, KY)
TERRAZZO MATERIAL SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)
DIVIDER STRIP SUPPLIER: Manhattan American Terrazzo Strip Company (Staley, NC)
PHOTOGRAPHY: David Laudadio

West Ridge Hard Facts terrazzo
West Ridge Elementary School, IL

West Ridge Elementary is home to some truly inspiring terrazzo flooring, earning an NTMA honor award as well as LEED Silver certification. Each floor is a creative exploration of various educational themes that begin with the letter “p”, from the full number Pi embedded along one hallway to the planets in the solar system to a hall that has a chronological listing of the presidents.

“The artisans who were installing the terrazzo were so excited about their floors,” Mindy Viamontes, project manager/project architect with Muller & Muller, said. “They were so eager to uncover their work and show it off.”

In addition to the colors and the shapes, the floor design is something teachers can use in lessons. The planets are not labeled so students can identify them. The presidents hallways includes names and dates, but doesn’t include any additional information about their terms. Because the school was completed in 2010, the hallway is up-to-date and includes current president and Chicagoan, Barack Obama.

PROJECT: West Ridge Elementary School (Chicago, IL)
CLIENT: Public Building Commission (PBC) of Chicago for the Chicago Public Schools
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: John Caretti & Co. (Bensenville, IL)
ARCHITECT: Muller & Muller (Chicago, IL)
TERRAZZO MATERIAL SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)
DIVIDER STRIP SUPPLIER: National Metal Shapes (Delaware, OH)


Terrazzo Provides a Bright Welcome That Will Never Fade

Lambert Airport
Linking America’s heartland to international crossroads, Lambert-St. Louis International Airport serves as a hub for the blending of the many different curiosities, cultures, traditions, and future possibilities of more than 12 million travelers a year. During a recent remodel, one objective was to create a brighter environment for these millions of travelers. Taking a creative approach to the update, a design competition was held for artists to submit drawings—reflecting the many different cultures that touch down in St. Louis—for the airport’s terrazzo flooring.

Artist Alicia LaChance’s “New Village,” a lively 41-color design, was chosen, and fully embraces the flexibility of the medium.

“The logo describes her interpretation of the world—all the different countries of the world that could possibly come through Lambert Airport,” said Kevin Rickman of Missouri Terrazzo, the terrazzo contractor for the renovation.

The 19,000 square feet of newly installed epoxy terrazzo is located at the security entrance to concourses C and D. As the vast majority of the floor is an off-white epoxy with a marble, glass, and mother of pearl chip design, LaChance’s bright, 400-square-foot inlay design stands out dramatically. The logo lies at the entrance to the two concourses, greeting all arriving passengers to St. Louis.

For this vivid logo design, the new terrazzo flooring was installed on top of the already existing terrazzo. Rickman said this process doesn’t differ much from a fresh terrazzo installation, as it still includes prepping the existing surface and putting in divider strips.

Working with Missouri Terrazzo, LaChance directed and selected each epoxy color for the logo, using glass, plastic, and mother of pearl chips. A color drawing with numbers that corresponded to the epoxy and aggregate colors sample sheet was then created to keep the brilliancy of the design organized. Installers poured as many of the 41 colors as they could in a day. As each individual epoxy was mixed and poured by hand, divider strips were continuously cleaned to ensure colors would not run during the next day’s pouring. Rickman said the logo is something wonderful for travelers to look at and appreciate, as a large amount of creativity and work went into the design and creation of “New Village.”

“To see that many different colors in one area, it just catches the eye,” he said. “And it won’t wear out.”

Color flexibility and sustainability make terrazzo the ideal flooring for high foot-traffic areas like Lambert-St.
Louis International Airport.

“Terrazzo won’t normally wear out. You can put one floor in and it can last up to 80 to 100 years,” Rickman said. “Terrazzo is just a great product.”

The Airport Authority at Lambert agrees, as it contracted Missouri Terrazzo to continue with an additional 50,000-square-foot terrazzo remodel at the ticketing level.

PROJECT: Lambert-St. Louis International Airport-Terminal 1 Renovation (St. Louis, MO)
CLIENT: City of St. Louis
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: Missouri Terrazzo Co Inc (St. Louis, MO)
ARCHITECT: Teng & Associates Inc (St. Louis, MO)
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: K & S Associates General Contractors (St. Louis, MO)
DIVIDER STRIP SUPPLIER: Manhattan American Terrazzo Strip Co. (Staley, NC)
PHOTOGRAPHY: Richard Sprengler
ARTIST: Alicia LaChance
RESIN: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)
CHIPS: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL) and Heritage Glass, Inc (Smithfield, UT)

Bringing Students Together

SIUC Student Center terrazzo

The student center is an important hub for any university–it’s a resource for students as well as a refuge from the stresses of academic life and often a much-needed social community for newcomers. Designing a student center means creating a space that will take a warm and fuzzy center in the memory of many an alum, that will lift the spirits and bring the community together.

Architects White & Borgognoni took a striking approach to this idea of community and togetherness visually uniting the four levels in a 3-color elliptical terrazzo pattern. The flexibility of terrazzo allowed for some truly creative design, and the result is one that emphasizes a sense of togetherness in the echo of the pattern along each floor. Standing on the top level and looking down through the atrium you see a building united in symmetry, coming together in the focal point on the entry floor.

This idea of unity is very much at the heart of the new student center, which was built to house all of the key university services in one place, effectively bringing together all the resources in one welcoming space, and the design of the flooring is a really lovely nod to that idea.

The 100% marble aggregate terrazzo provides a few unique advantages: not only is it flexible enough to support a wide range of designs, but it is so durable that this very heart of the student center is sure to last through many a reunion, supporting fond memories and inspiring new ones for years to come.

It’s not just student centers that terrazzo’s got covered–there is a long a proud history of terrazzo in higher education, providing not just durable support but highly sustainable flooring in many a well-loved building.

Architect: White and Borgognoni Architects P.C.
Terrazzo Contractor: Missouri Terrazzo
Terrazzo Supply: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies
General Contractor: River City Construction
Precast: Wausau Tile
Photography: David Laudadio

There’s Nothing Normal About Uptown Station

Uptown Station terrazzo

You’d be wrong to refer to Uptown Station in Normal, Ill., as a train station. Yes, it is the second-busiest Amtrak station in Illinois, right behind Chicago, servicing more than 200,000 passengers a year. But it is also a centralized hub for those traveling via plane, bus, car, and bike.

It’s also the town of Normal’s City Hall.

For such an important new public building with a huge amount of foot traffic, terrazzo was installed on the ground floor, where durability and a terrific first impression are top priorities.

In the building’s main throughway, an intricate terrazzo graphic of a compass includes tributes to each of the four modes of transportation that Uptown Station brings together: rail, bus, car, and bike. The design captures the essence of the station’s status as a multimodal

transportation center, while elegantly uniting nostalgia for the past with the high-speed technology of the present.
The project, which recently received a 2013 NTMA Honor Award, also included precast terrazzo steps with poured-in-place epoxy terrazzo intermediate stair landings, precast 4-inch terrazzo along the walls, and poured-in-place 12-inch cove bases around the ground-floor columns.

Thanks to its resiliency, Uptown Station’s shiny terrazzo will be connecting travelers for decades to come, and the city’s finance department, situated on the third floor, won’t have to worry about unexpected maintenance costs.

PROJECT: Uptown Station (Normal, IL)
TERRAZZO CONTRACTOR: Missouri Terrazzo (St. Louis, MO)
ARCHITECT & DESIGNER: RATIO Architects Inc. (Champagne, IL)
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: River City Construction (East Peoria, IL)
CHIPS & EPOXY SUPPLIER: Terrazzo & Marble Supply (Wheeling, IL)
DIVIDER STRIPS: Creative Edge (Fairfield, IA)
PRECAST BASE: Wausau Tile (Wausau, WI)

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 Inspiration in New Center for Fine Arts

Chaminade College Preparatory School

Chaminade College Preparatory School, an independent Catholic school in St. Louis for young men in grades 6-12, is known for its high levels of achievement in both academics and athletics. The school recently made use of a generous gift from alum Albert “Skip” Viragh to build an 80,000 square foot center for fine arts. Named in his honor, the Skip Viragh Center for the Arts holds two theaters, three music rooms, five classrooms for visual arts, and more.

And to make sure the center makes a difference in the lives of students for generations, they chose to install terrazzo floors in the building’s main lobby, corridors, main stairs, and restrooms. The young men of Chaminade are now guided to the school’s theaters and classrooms by graceful streaks of cardinal, a school color, and subtle complementing shades of gray.

Hastings and Chivetta was the architect of the Skip Viragh Center, and Missouri Terrazzo was the terrazzo contractor. Both firms are based in St. Louis. Other companies involved in the project:

EPOXY RESIN: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Companies (Wheeling, IL)
DIVIDER STRIPS: Manhattan American Terrazzo Strip Company (Staley, NC)

Upper Canada Minerals (Shanty Bay, ON)
American Specialty Glass (North Salt Lake, UT)
Kafka Granite (Stratford, WI)
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.