Location: Orlando, FL
Architecture and Design: Stantec
Case Study: A Storefront Design that Stands Out in a Crowd
SkyVenture LLC, an indoor skydiving company, was looking to move out of their old Orlando location and erect a brand new center in the same city. The new site was arranged to be just south of International Drive, an epicenter of tourism business. The building design of the new iFly center would need to stand out to take advantage of the busy area and not get lost in the bustle.
The architectural firm, Stantec, used iFly’s unique business to its advantage when designing the building and created a spectacle that would attract new iFly customers. However, to do so, they’d need a flexible opening wall system. The individual panels of the NanaWall HSW60 single track sliding system made the project possible.
Creating Next-Level Curb Appeal
When a passerby sees a person flying, they’re bound to walk over and learn more about what’s taking place. To get attention on a crowded street, Stantec wanted people to see into the building, notice the experience people were having—and know that they too could have that experience!
The firm designed a building in which nearly a quarter of the façade would open and expose the flying tunnel to the sidewalk. The opening system is an 11-panel NanaWall HSW60 system that stands 12 feet and spans nearly 32 non-linear feet. The HSW60 system wraps around a tricky soft-edged corner and creates a segmented curve to enclose the cylindrical flying tunnel. When opened, the panels are stored off to the side and completely clear of the opening. In the interior of the building, there is a matching semi-circled 6-panel HSW60 system to wrap around the other side of the flying tunnel.
Passerbys don’t just notice iFly, they walk up and interact with it. It’s common to see crowds assemble outside of the center all because of the flying spectacle that an open building made possible.
“When closed, the NanaWall system participates to the overall architectural composition; when open, it reveals the energy and activity of this skydiving facility and blurs the boundaries between building and public realm” –Stantec Architect
An open HSW is impactful, but it needed to perform when closed as well. It was essential to iFly that the NanaWall system positively contributes to the aesthetic of the building when closed. To blend the design of the NanaWall system with the overall building design, Stantec used vinyl graphics to display striations across the dark glass. The lines match the wavy paintings that span across the entire exterior of the building.
The building envelope also needed to protect against extreme Florida weather and potential unwanted intruders. NanaWall is dedicated to creating high performing systems, and so the HSW performs exceptionally well for wind driven rain and it also provides the needed multipoint locking security for a store façade. The HSW has been independently tested for air infiltration, water penetration, structural load deflection and forced entry by an accredited and certified laboratory.