SFMOMA wins AN’s 2016 Building of the Year > West

Thursday, December 15, 2016

The Architect’s Newspaper has announced winners of the 2016 Best of Design Awards. Taking the top step for Building of the Year > West is the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Designed by Snøhetta, the expansion amends the Mario Botta-design building that first debuted in 1995. The project aimed to create a more welcoming SFMOMA, utilizing a multitude of new entrances that engage with the surrounding South of Market (SoMa) neighborhood.

A primary feature of the 10-story Snøhetta expansion is the rippling horizontal bands of the facade that were inspired by the fog and waters of the San Francisco Bay. The feature wall – the largest architectural application of fiberglass reinforced plastic (FRP) in the United States – was a juxtaposition of two key layers: 1) the outer rippled surface made of contoured fiberglass reinforced polymer (FRP) fabricated by Kreysler & Associates, and 2) an insulated opaque performance barrier with interlocking curtainwall technology and insulation.

The outer ripple surface required each panel to be a unique geometry, thus requiring intensive CNC milling technology of unique molds for each of the 700+ panels out of polystyrene blocks. The inner performance curtainwall maximized off-site, shop-controlled assembly to maximize quality control of key features.  Following fabrication of the FRP panels, they were transported to the curtainwall assembly shop where the two systems were mated before delivery to site for installation in a single pass.  Both shops were within 40 miles of the project site. You may experience a virtual tour of the manufacturing processes and installation sequences that brought this visionary facade to life here

Enclos provided comprehensive design/assist - design/build services for the Museum’s 235,000 square feet of facade.

A detailed case study of the FRP delivery process is available here courtesy of Composites World.

Photo © Henrik Kam / SFMOMA