When the time came for Patty McDaniel of Boardwalk Builders, Rehoboth Beach, Del., to move her team into a larger facility, she chose to make a positive statement about Boardwalk directed to her staff as well as to the outside world.
“The hope was to create a dynamic and satisfying work space,” McDaniel wrote in the company’s Master Design Awards application for the resulting building. “In addition, we wanted to create a dignified presence to showcase the company’s design sense, capability, craftsmanship and attention to detail.”
These were ambitious goals, particularly considering the starting point — an unremarkable, galvanized steel warehouse that had previously served as an auto repair shop. Yet, when the resulting building was presented in the Light Commercial category of the Master Design Awards, six top remodelers and designers who served on the Qualified Remodeler judging panel not only felt it worthy of a Gold Award in its category, but they also designated the project the “Best of Show over $200,000”.
McDaniel credits architect Mark McInturff, FAIA, of McInturff Architects, Bethesda, Md., with connecting her goals with a workable vision for the project. On a sketch of his original design concept, McInturff wrote: “The idea is to create a funky little office building lodged into the corner of a metal warehouse.”
McDaniel’s description in her design award application described it another way: “a refined mahogany box inserted into the generic warehouse shape.”
Specifics of the design solution included leaving structural elements of the building exposed and using color to emphasize these elements, “as a way to talk about being a company that puts things together.” The mahogany skin for the office “box” projects a warmth to represent the company’s relationship-building approach to business and to stand in contrast to the cold steel of the rest of the building.
“The remodeled space is both a comfortable office and a credible statement of our capabilities,” says McDaniel.
Great remodeling companies seem to relish opportunities to meet tough design and construction challenges. Clients and potential customers who visit Boardwalk Builders’ new office will appreciate this and will, no doubt, derive a great deal of confidence from what they see.