Expanded metal facade enhances visibility of outdoor brand
THE NORTH FACE, MULTIPLE LOCATIONS
SIMULATING A MOUNTAIN RANGE, the expanded metal grating façade personifies the brand named after the coldest side of a mountain. Geometric triangular shapes of McNichols’ heavy-duty, ¼-inch strand expanded metal evoke the terrain of glaciers and requisite outdoor wear.
“The design concept began with fixtures we used in the interior and evolved into the sculptural metal on the exterior,” said Alison Carr of Gensler, lead designer. First applied to the Indianapolis store at Fashion Mall at
Keystone, it has become a prototype applied to many The North Face locations.
Unique site conditions require that dimensions and shapes be individualized to the store. For the Corte Madera store, triangles range from 4’x4’7”x5’6” to 5’6”x11’3”x13’9”. Together, they comprise a 250-sq.-ft. structure weighing 2,500 lb.
Weighing 4.27 lb. per sq. ft., the expanded metal has 58% open area. It casts shadows on the
building that change throughout the day. The metal was painted light bronze to complement interior fixtures.
Also inside is an expanded metal community board painted signature red. The expanded metal is structured by a frame made of hot rolled flat bar with compound angles continuously welded and sanded smooth for a seamless finish. Installed with the help of a custom-built cart and remote-controlled lift, the assembly is bolted at five points to metal studs within the exterior wall assembly.