With its shimmering, iridescent exterior, Exploration Tower at Port Canaveral beckons visitors with its unique appearance as its color changes in different light and at different angle.Opened in November 2013, the Port’s iconic welcome center showcases the first use of Valspar’s new Kameleon™ Color mica coating as spray-applied to Firestone Metal Products’ UNA-CLAD™ metal wall panels by Linetec, one the nation’s largest finishers of architectural aluminum.
An integral part of Florida’s Space Coast and Canaveral Cove’s revitalization, Exploration Tower is owned by Canaveral Port Authority. Its opening coincided with the Port’s 60th anniversary of its establishment and the 500th anniversary of Ponce de Leon’s landing on Florida’s east coast.
Taking its cues from the shapes and hues of the port, GWWO Inc./Architects designed the $23 million, seven-story, sail-shaped structure to express the common characteristics of “transience, function and imagery.” The building’s southern elevation soars from the water to the sky. It narrows in scale and reduces its exterior coverage until only the steel frame remains to outline the curvature and comes together at a peak 60-feet above the main roof level.
When creating a unique design that requires a vibrant color scheme, Kameleon Color is an excellent choice. This innovative, multicolored system uses mica flakes to create a consistent, iridescent look,” notes Tim Tritch, Valspar’s director of sales. “The coating utilizes a blend of ceramic and inorganic pigments create this rich look that is both brilliant and subtle.”
Linetec also applied a clear coat over the Blue Pearl II for enhanced durability. As with other 70% PVDF resin-based coatings, Kameleon Colors meet the most stringent, exterior, architectural specification, American Architectural Manufacturers Association’s AAMA-2605. This specification requires paint coatings to meet rigorous testing performance standards, including more than 2,000 hours of cyclic corrosion per ASTM G85 annex 5, and heat- and humidity-resistance. Per AAMA-2605, the coating also must maintain its film integrity, color retention, chalk resistance, gloss retention, and erosion resistance properties for a minimum of 10 years on the South Florida testing site.
To ensure consistency and minimize variation, Linetec modified its existing paint protocol process. Bratz explains, “The amount of paint needed for the entire project was determined and ordered as a single batch at the beginning of the project. Valspar prepared the special mica technology paint all at one time with excellent consistency, taking out the variable of multiple paint batches.”
In addition to the Kameleon Colors’ Blue Pearl II finish on southern seaside elevation, Linetec also applied Valspar’s Fluropon White finish to the northern elevation’s aluminum-framed curtainwall offering views of the bustling port. The entire project was painted in four phases, starting in March 2013 and ending in May. Exploration Tower at Port Canaveral, Canaveral Cove, Florida;
• Owner: Canaveral Port Authority; Cape Canaveral, Fla.; www.portcanaveral.com/welcomecenter
• Master planning: AECOM; Los Angeles; www.aecom.com
GWWO Inc./Architects; Baltimore; www.gwwoinc.com
• Architects: GWWO Inc./Architects; Baltimore; www.gwwoinc.com
• General contractor: Skanska USA Building; Cape Canaveral, Fla.; www.usa.skanska.com
• Structural engineer: Thornton Tomasetti; Washington, D.C.; http://www.thorntontomasetti.com
• Exterior cladding system – installing contractor: KENPAT USA LLC; Apopka, Fla.; www.kenpat-usa.com
• Exterior cladding system – manufacturer: Firestone Metal Products; Anoka, Minn.; www.firestonemetal.com
• Exterior cladding system – 3-D modeling: Radius Track Corporation; Minneapolis; www.radiustrack.com
• Exterior cladding system – coatings manufacturer: The Valspar Corporation; Minneapolis; www.valsparcoilextrusion.com
• Exterior cladding system – finisher: Linetec, Wausau, Wis.; www.linetec.com
Photos by Rip Noel, Noel Studios Inc.
About The Valspar Corporation
The Valspar Corporation (NYSE: VAL) is a global leader in the paint and coatings industry. Since 1806, Valspar has been dedicated to bringing customers the latest innovations, the finest quality and the best customer service in the coatings industry.
Located in Wisconsin, Linetec celebrates 30 years of serving customers across the country. The company finishes such products as aluminum windows, wall systems, doors, hardware and other architectural metal components, as well as automotive, marine and manufactured consumer goods. Linetec is a subsidiary of Apogee Enterprises, Inc. (NASDAQ: APOG).
Linetec is a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). For more information about Linetec, its services and news, visit www.linetec.com.