Integrated Services Lead to Better Results
Another key factor in Gibraltar’s ability to deliver exceptional service and design to clients is that the firm provides integrated architecture, engineering, interior design and construction observation services. This integrated approach results in practical creativity, efficient workflow and greater value for communities.
The team begins collaborating at the very start of the project. As the architectural design takes shape, engineering and interior design are there to provide timely input.
For Gibraltar’s engineering group, designing systems that efficiently deliver greater air quality, lighting and student comfort that blends with the architecture is a challenge that they embrace on each project. Alex Nelson, Vice President of Gibraltar, explains, “It’s a proven fact that air quality, day lighting and classroom comfort contribute to higher test scores. Our team has always paid attention to the details. It is hard to teach in a classroom where the air handler is louder than the teacher. We look for the best engineering solution to create an outstanding learning environment at the lowest possible cost and the greatest operational savings.”
Gibraltar has a full-service engineering department that includes experts in electrical, mechanical and structural engineering. Among the services they offer are site assessment, topographical surveys, site planning, structural analysis, extensive HVAC design, plumbing design, electrical design, energy management, acoustical design and consulting. Together, these professionals ensure that the building is designed in a safe, constructible and efficient manner that will be economical to operate and maintain.
At Gibraltar, the interior design team is about more than colors and finishes. They help with space planning that gives the school flexibility while achieving the current space requirements. They also adapt the classroom environment to meet new technology-driven teaching methods. Gibraltar’s lead interior designer Erica Irvin explains how listening to technology teachers gave them the idea to turn the classroom around. Teachers told them that in a traditional computer lab the kids faced the teacher, but the computers faced away from the teacher. This made it difficult to measure the kids’ progress. “We decided to face the computer screens toward the teacher and face the workspace in the opposite direction. The teachers were able to see who needed help and who didn’t,” Irvin explained. “Not only did this make the class more productive for both the teachers and students, it also created a more functional environment.”
The interior design team prides themselves on helping schools project the right image with a truly functional design. In addition, they help coordinate ADA compliance studies, space planning, interior renovations, furniture assessment and layout, equipment layout and material, color and texture development.