Façade design uplifts manufacturing plant and helps create a positive working environment

"Architecture should be fascinating and enticing on the emotional level as well as intellectually challenging. When this is achieved, a long term connection with the inhabitants of an area is established. This connection will span for generations. Recent new additions to the fabric of Kansas City are doing just that," Bill Zahner.

The Zahner North Dock Project's program involved adding 10,000 sq ft to the North façade of their existing building. This would allow a larger, more open assembly area and improve operational efficiency for their production of massive panel system assemblies. Anyone can build a box, but Zahner wanted more; both from the people who work within the plant and offices, as well as those driving/walking by.

helps create a positive working environment

The spirit and intent of the façade reflects the complex structures being built around the world by Zahner. The façade also needed to have expansion potential to the west without appearing dated. The current plant was designed in the 1970s and incorporated tight column spacing and low ceiling heights. Both inhibited manufacturing and assembly operation efficiency. Due to increasing size of panels being designed and fabricated for ongoing projects, like the recent Miami Intermodal Center project, Zahner needed to have a much larger, more open assembly space. For example, Zahner wanted as wide a column spacing as possible (currently columns are around 45 ft) and as high a ceiling as economically feasible (20 ft clear height under crane rail compared to 10 ft height under old shop).

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