Starbucks Coffee

Project Location

Palatine, IL


Charles Sparks + Company



Case Study: Starbucks Coffee

In December 1999, the Chicago suburb of Palatine revitalized their suburban downtown with row houses, condominiums, shops and a railway station. DLK Civic Design, an architecture firm based in Chicago, designed the Palatine Metra station house in 2001. The red-bricked transit hub looks like it was built in the 1890s, with its imposing clock tower and cross-gables that rise above a sloping hipped roof.

A pedestrian concourse, concession facilities and decorative canopies complete the passenger experience. Of note is the Starbucks café that travelers can access inside, through a single track sliding, four-panel NanaWall HSW66.

The Starbucks entrance needed the opening glass wall because of the extremely tight floor space, says Paul Ng, director of information services for Charles Sparks & Co., which oversaw the design of Starbucks. “The NanaWall allows for a more open space,” he says. “The store had a tight square footage.  We consulted with a NanaWall engineer, and NanaWall fit our design.”

“The NanaWall allows for a more open space the store had a tight square footage.  We consulted with a NanaWall engineer, and NanaWall fit our design.”

The Aesthetic of Wood

The design firm looked at other operable glass walls, but chose NanaWall because it “is one of the only companies that offers a wood finish” of exceptional quality, says Ng. The firm needed to match the other walnut stains on the floorboards, shelves, and counterpaces. Ng further comments, “After looking at its competitors, we saw that NanaWall had the best wood options.” Moreover, the team and Charles Sparks – a firm known for visual branding – was impressed with NanaWall’s presentation, particularly because they came in with a wide array of wood samples. 

When the NanaWall opening is completely retracted, customers and staff become occupants of the extraordinary interior civic space DLK created in the waiting room. The cathedral ceilings, expansive natural lighting and arching vaults are a relaxing setting to sip warm coffee and read The Chicago Tribune. 

Floor Plan

Photo Gallery

Related Product

Sliding Glass Walls