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Pyramid skylight welcomes patients, visitors

Metal Architecture, top honors, october 2016, Marcy Marro, SuperSky, Penn Medicine

Opened in June 2015, the Penn Medicine Southern Chester County's new outpatient facility in West Grove, Pa., was designed by Array Architects, Conshohocken, Pa. Located on 45 acres, the new $28 million, 72,000-square-foot medical office building provides patient-focused health care, including imaging, physical therapy, lab and primary care services on the first floor, with an ambulatory surgery suite and medical offices for services such as orthopedics, pediatric clinic, ear, nose and throat, and gastroenterology on the upper level.

The construction manager, The Norwood Co., Malvern, Pa., collaborated with the design team throughout the planning phase to provide extensive design-assist services, including product selection, scheduling and cost estimating.

Julian Thompson, AIA, principal at Array Architects, says the building design originated from an early workshop with the developer, Anchor Health Properties, Wilmington, Del., and the major tenant, West Chester, Pa.-based Chester County Hospital, now part of Penn Medicine. "It was determined that the building wanted to emulate the materials and characteristics of the region where it was being constructed," says Thompson. "The site is in a rural location of eastern Pennsylvania and is surrounded by horse farms and rustic stone walls and houses. The area is surrounded by farming and is known as the mushroom capital."

According to Thompson, the team decided that masonry should be the primary material used to tie the building into the surrounding area. The team also wanted the building to have a progressive aesthetic that would emulate the sophisticated and high-tech equipment and medical care housed inside. A composite metal panel system was decided to be the best choice, and BAMCO Inc., Middlesex, N.J., supplied its FABLOGIC aluminum composite material panels for the project. "It was designed in a very deliberate and organized way with all of the joinery on a 5-foot module, and responding to the building's structural and window framing," Thompson explains.

The facility's first floor is organized around a major spine running the entire length of the building. The main entrance and all of the departments are easily accessed from this main street. "As you enter the building, you approach the registration area and the main waiting area for imaging, registration, physical therapy," Thompson adds. "The large, pyramidal skylight is placed just above the main waiting area and extends through the second level, allowing natural light to also enter into the second-level ambulatory surgery waiting area. Within the skylight is suspended a large kinetic sculpture that hangs approximately 25 feet from the peak of the skylight."

Super Sky Products Enterprises LLC, Mequon, Wis., manufactured the 23- by 23-foot pyramid skylight. To ensure long-lasting performance, Lintec, Wausau, Wis., finished the aluminum framing in a Silver Sunstorm color mica coating.

According to Tammy Schroeder, LEED Green Associate, senior marketing specialist at Linetec, mica paint coatings can add a unique vibrancy and visual appeal to any project. "Linetec's Silver Sunstorm also has a similar appearance to clear anodize, which matches the other finishes throughout the medical facility," she says. "As a two-coat, 70 percent PVDF coating, the finish's performance is optimized for its location with consideration to its exterior exposure to the elements and its interior position above the patients, visitors and staff."

Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope, Santa Monica, Calif., supplied insulated, low-E skylight glass, which spans 1,016 square feet with a 14-foot, 4 inch vertical. The team at Super Sky worked closely with the glazing contractor, Alderfer Glass Co., Telford, Pa., to ensure proper installation and performance.


Penn Medicine Southern Chester County, West Grove, Pa.

Award: Institutional-Healthcare Excellence Winner in 2015 Annual Merit Construction Awards of Excellence from the ABC Eastern Pennsylvania Chapter
Owner: Penn Medicine, Chester County Hospital, West Grove
Developer: Anchor Health Properties, Wilmington, Del.
Architect: Array Architects, Conshohocken, Pa.
Construction manager: The Norwood Co., Malvern, Pa.
Skylight finisher: Linetec, Wausau, Wis.
Glazing contractor: Alderfer Glass Co., Telford, Pa.
Metal wall panels: BAMCO Inc., Middlesex, Pa.,
Skylight: Super Sky Products Enterprises LLC, Mequon, Wis.,
Skylight glass: Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope, Santa Monica, Calif.,
Photo: William Lemke, Courtesy of Super Sky