Keg 1, Fredericksburg, Texas
In late-2014, Mustard Design Architects was charged
with refreshing Keg 1, an unassuming commercial office and
distribution facility. The client wanted a fresh look for a
building that is primarily used for transporting and delivering
goods and the occasional client meeting.
No one expected this type of building to be anything
but ordinary. That's what made the design possibilities so
We had been experimenting with using metal to re-skin
building facades for a while, and this project offered us the
opportunity to expand on our ideas and explore some new
We wanted to create an entirely new aesthetic of
visual interest by capitalizing on metal's textural differences
including rusted, painted, solid and perforated and playing off
these characteristics to create a dynamic structure.
Beyond our design intent, the project had to satisfy
- Make the entire building front more visually engaging.
- Conceal incongruities created by a previous addition.
- Create a clear entry point to the building.
- Serve as a showpiece for the client.
- Stay within a limited budget.
To do this, we created a shell outside of the
existing split-face concrete block wall by attaching metal studs to
the existing wall and applying a Fabral pre-finished 24 gauge
exposed fastener 7/8-inch corrugated metal wall panel in a dark
bronze finish to each end. To create the screens, we used "Western
Rib" metal panel from Western States Metal Roofing in A606 finish,
which was affixed to structural steel columns.
The panels conceal mismatched split-face concrete
block, different colored sections of roof, and a seam from a
previous addition. They create an altogether more striking
We supported the screens with a freestanding steel
wide flange arbor that minimally impacts the existing building. To
provide a foundation for the new steel columns, we removed bands of
the existing sidewalk, poured new piers and reinstalled strips of
sidewalk in an accenting texture. The steel columns facing the
highway were then wrapped with limestone that tapered toward the
base. A trellis of angled steel also brings visual prominence to
For such a seemingly uncomplicated project, we knew
the details would make or break the assignment. So we took
exceptional care to study steel connections, trim profiles, metal
panel connections, purposeful joinery including the tie rods behind
the perforated panel-right down to the screw alignment. Panel
joints were carefully placed to minimize cutting of metal sheets,
and we eschewed clunky trim at every opportunity.
When combined, the variety of metal forms, products
and finishes united to forge something extraordinary. Each piece
was an elegant solution that created a new face for the building
and breathed new life into what had been a non-descript warehouse
on the side of a highway. And we did this all without touching the
inside of the building.
The trust between the client and our team allowed us
both to be bold, and the result is more than a facelift. It's
nothing short of a transformation.
Andrew Bray, AIA, and Brad Bertrand, Mustard