Courtyard Canopies

October 27, 2016

The small courtyard at the center of Gateway Community College’s Incubator Building in Phoenix, Ariz., could have easily been overlooked during the institution’s remodeling efforts. Thanks to an ambitious fabric architecture installation, however, the outdoor space was transformed into one of the campus’s highlights. In the spirit of innovation, the client wanted to make the …

Iconic PTFE canopy greets and protects travelers

October 1, 2016

The San Diego International Airport (SDIA) wanted to make life easier for travelers needing rental cars by providing a one-stop centralized hub that would be quick and easy to access. They developed the SDIA Rental Car Center, a two million square-foot complex that houses all car rental companies and vehicles and enables them to provide …

Backyard patio shade

August 30, 2016

A custom shade disc transforms a scorching residential backyard into a shady oasis. In the arid Southwest, a little shade can go a long way toward transforming a residential backyard from a scorching desert to a shady oasis. One Tucson, Ariz., couple decided to shade their yard in style by installing a custom cantilevered shade …

Textile fibers reinforce a building

A Japanese fabric manufacturer reinforces its showroom against earthquakes, while making a provocative visual statement. With the four main islands of Japan perched atop a convergence of three major tectonic plate boundaries, the country has a history of earthquakes and seismic activity. The ongoing seismic impact on buildings, infrastructure and population is significant, requiring some …

Custom shade canopy

August 1, 2016

Fabric architecture makes a rooftop patio more useable and comfortable. When it comes to creating residential shade solutions, an awning will usually do. But Sugar House Awning Industries of Midvale, Utah, had a client that wanted a more unique solution of a custom-built slide wire cable canopy with rope-operated drop curtains. “The client wanted the …

Functional tensioned shade sculpture

Framed structure of gently arching beams creates a focal point and memorable landmark for a community. Early 1900s towns in the U.S. Southwest sprung up like cacti wherever stagecoach stops seemed appropriate. Established in 1912, Tolleson, Ariz., is one of those stagecoach layover points, and like many American towns that predate the automobile, the transformation …

Sheltering safety standards with fabric

June 28, 2016

Fabric roofing structure—one of the largest in North America—allows a crash test facility to continue research year-round. Earlier this year, the National Safety Council estimated motor vehicle deaths to be 8 percent higher in 2015 than they were in 2014—the largest year-over-year percentage increase in 50 years. While a multitude of factors contribute to vehicle …

School shade

June 1, 2016

Shade structure at a mid-century kindergarten in New Zealand adds a contemporary facelift and protection from the sun. Of all the roles that shade structures fulfill—from aesthetic appeal to space expansion—their most critical function is weather protection. Few places require as much protection against ultraviolet (UV) rays as New Zealand, which, according to the country’s …

Multi-functional shade

May 1, 2016

Cantilevered fabric shade structure features electrical wiring and high-pressure tubing to accomodate misting fans, signage and lighting design. Kona Grill is a national restaurant chain known for its sleek décor, and select locations are now known for the dynamic exterior architecture. When the Kona Grill in Woodlands, Texas, wanted a unique and highly visible shade …

Airport passenger canopies

Dynamic-looking tensile fabric canopy evokes a nautical motif in its roof forms as a nod to San Diego’s nearby San Diego Bay and the Pacific Ocean. The San Diego International Airport is the nation’s largest single-runway airport, and it has seen steady increases in passenger growth and subsequently is in near-constant construction mode. Two major …