Making the Grade

Elementary School Makes the Grade in Foster City, California

by Scott Bacon, CENTRIA global product and business development director

From Architectural West Mar/Apr ’14

Foster City Elementary School strives to help its pupils achieve academic success while also becoming well-rounded individuals.  The philosophy of cooperative guidance from both parents and teachers allows students to follow the path to become lifelong learners.  This commitment was hampered recently when the 26-year-old elementary school developed roof leaks, leading to water damage and mold.

         Berkeley, California-based architect, WLC Architects, Inc., not only had a major roof renovation to contend with, but the project also called for a new building envelope and an expansion of the administration area, library, and the creation of a large group-instruction gym.  The development of these buildings created an intimate courtyard surrounded by the new facilities.  Through the use of innovative building materials, the architects developed a functional and aesthetic plan that would blend the modern architecture of the new buildings with the existing buildings on campus.

         Because moisture infiltration and damage were the major issues at hand, the architects specified Centria’s MetalWrap(TM) Series insulated composite backup panels.  MetalWrap’s single-panel design provides protection against air and moisture breaches.  These breaches can lead to damaging condensation, a reduction in thermal performance, and a compromised building envelope.  MetalWrap Series was also selected because it reduces installation time, offering a significant advantage to building owners, general contractors, and installation teams.  In addition, the foam core helps the system achieve a high level of thermal performance, with thermal-resistance values that meet or exceed code requirements.  The system can be paired with nearly any type of exterior rainscreen system, from single-skin metal panels to MCM, brick, stucco, or terra cotta.  Designers of the Foster City Elementary School installed MetalWrap behind Centria’s Concept Series concealed fastener panels.

         Centria’s MetalWrap Series, along with the innovative Formawall® Dimension Series insulated metal panels, are the only wall systems that provide both advanced thermal and moisture protection (ATMP®) in a single panelized component.  Compared to traditional multi-component wall construction, which typically requires multiple components, Centria’s foam panels are manufactured as one component.  In addition to increasing performance, this unique feature significantly reduces jobsite waste and environmental impact.

         The aesthetic properties of Formawall were also ideal for this project.  One benefit is that these panels worked well for the renovation of the existing structures while complementing the new buildings on the campus.  Trimless ends eliminate breaks due to visible fasteners, creating a continuous aesthetic.  The panels can be mounted either horizontally or vertically to achieve long, sleek sightlines.

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