Kevin Greenwood and Stage Tops USA cover lives events around the globe

July 1, 2020

by Jill C. Lafferty “Everything is visual today,” says Kevin Greenwood, owner/CEO of Stage Tops USA, a Manchester, Tenn.-based company that manufactures and installs roof skins, wind walls, stage scrims and other fabric projects for major live events around the world. “[My clients] want to be seen. The bigger the better. They want to put …

Protecting structures with fabric

When it comes to protecting structures  from the elements, fabric has it covered. by Jeff Moravec Fabric serves an unending variety of needs, but sometimes overlooked is its role in protecting us from the dangers of our natural world. Here’s a snapshot of several companies and their products that have been designed to protect structures …

Protective fabric mesh surrounds a landmark tower

A fabric-clad tower in southern Germany brings technicians, elevator experts and the public together in one spectacular vertical setting. By Bruce N. Wright, FAIA Paris’s Eiffel Tower, London’s Big Ben, China’s Three Pagodas, Iraq’s spiral minaret: Over time, all became more than just their function—they became iconic symbols of their location.  Likewise, ThyssenKrupp’s fabric-wrapped Rottweil …

Automation advantages

Adding automation can prove challenging, with costs to consider, processes to change and nervous employees to reckon with. Still, fabricators who have taken the leap say there’s no other way to go.  by Pamela Mills-Senn When Darren Arthur, owner of Nautilux Custom Canvas LLC in Hazlet, N.J., purchased a single-fly Aeronaut cutter eight years ago—his …

Fabric offers numerous benefits for awnings and canopies

June 2, 2020

By Bruce N. Wright, FAIA Fabric awnings and canopies can provide energy savings, thermal and visual comfort, weather protection from sun, rain, snow, sleet, hail and wind—all while offering brand identification and architectural aesthetics. Modern architectural fabrics meet many critical design needs, such as durability, ease of maintenance, fire resistance, high strength-to-weight ratio and corrosion …

New airport canopies welcome travelers

June 1, 2020

More than 107 million travelers pass through the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, making it the busiest airport in the world. With all of the traffic, airport management developed a plan to renew existing facilities, enhancing the airport’s aesthetic appeal and ensuring the best possible customer service.  Called ATLNext, the plan calls for a series of …

Metalwork and framing for fabric applications

Fabric is only half of the equation for many manufacturers in the specialty fabrics industry. The other half, metalwork and framing, requires its own set of capabilities.  by Laurie F. Junker A frame is the essential component that transforms fabric into architecture, turning a piece of cloth into some sort of protective cover or defined …

Making the case for fabric

Commercial projects use shade to unify and transform large public gathering places  By Bruce N. Wright, FAIA “The architecture teleports you to a bazaar in a faraway land!”—Yelp report from a recent visitor to the Irvine Spectrum shopping mall in Irvine, Calif.  Many visitors, like the one commenting on Yelp, are drawn back again and …

A dramatic canopy rebrands a local landmark

By Bruce N. Wright, FAIA In downtown Honolulu Harbor, the Aloha Tower Marketplace is one of Hawaii’s most famous landmarks. While it was completed in 1994 as part of a comprehensive revitalization project for a part of the city that had become distant from the center of business and tourist activity, it took a private …

Promoting shade in the marketplace and happiness in the workplace

May 1, 2020

For Patrick Howe and Wholesale Shade, high-quality custom shade sails are the product of a happy and efficient workplace. by Jill C. Lafferty My day consists of making sure my employees are happy. That’s my number one job,” says Patrick Howe, owner of Wholesale Shade™, a private label shade sail manufacturer based in San Marcos, …