Fabricator: Kovach Inc.
Location: Phoenix, Arizona
Copper has certain attributes that make it an appealing facade option in arid climates. The first is that it doesn’t turn green.
The architects chose copper in part because it has a deep-rooted history in Arizona, which has led the nation in copper production for the last century. But the project, which achieved LEED Gold, also benefits from the material’s recyclability to earn points, and on its low price at the time of specification to meet the school’s budgetary needs.
The project includes 15,000 square feet of UNACLAD architectural grade sheet copper. Because the 80,000-pound copper facade includes shaded outdoor student spaces in its program, some of the panels are designed to have perforations.
To achieve the facade’s creases and reveals, copper sheets were cut into the proper widths, then customized on a computerized press break, a modern and more precise version of older hand-operated press breaks. The finished panels were tested for wind loads at Kovach’s in-house testing facility before installation.