Wausau Helps InVision Architecture Bring Des Moines
Condo Project to Life
A 90-year-old fixture of downtown Des Moines has been transformed from a former
tire factory to a luxurious condominium tower. Opening the old brick
walls to let daylight into the redesigned space and doing it within
budget were keys in the success of the project. InVision Architecture
enlisted Wausau Window and Wall Systems early in the design process
to help bring Whiteline Lofts to life.
Wausau often partners with architects before a building design is
complete to address any complexities with the design. In the case
of Whiteline Lofts, several issues needed to be resolved to ensure
a successful project. First, the building is part of Des Moines'
Court Avenue District and had to follow strict design guidelines.
It is also the tallest point for five blocks and has two floors
added to the top of it for the penthouse units. Finally, the building's
exposed concrete frame was not only a design consideration, but
also a thermal concern.
InVision's project manager, Tom Feldmann, worked closely with Wausau's
regional sales manager, Tim Nass, their engineering team, and Iowa
representative Bob Syroka.
"I've lost count of the number of times they've visited us,
the hours they spent talking to us," notes Feldmann.
"For decades architects have relied on us for their most complicated
projects," says Tim Nass, regional sales manager with Wausau.
"They trust us to make their project look good and work well.
We can support their idea from a sketch on a napkin all the way
through engineering, testing and manufacturing, until delivering
a fabricated, finished system to the job site."
Early in the process, Wausau was able to help InVision identify
a change that would help keep the project with budget. Instead of
a custom curtainwall protruding from the building, the windows could
be inset to maintain the shadow and depth that gives the building
its distinguished characteristics.
This enabled InVision to specify its 4250 Series offset windows
as part of the Advantage by Wausau line offering economically priced,
pre-engineered products. These windows carry a limited warranty
of up to 10 years and "with the litigious nature of condominium
construction, we needed a product that will perform, but we also
need a company to stand behind the product if something goes wrong,"
emphasizes Feldmann. "To us, this means our only choice is
For Whiteline Lofts' balconies, Wausau provided its Terrace Doors,
and for the two, new exterior stair towers, Wausau's SuperWall was
used. The system's blue-tinted, low-e coating and argon gas-filled
glass not only differentiates the residential building from the
area's green-tinted office buildings, but also minimizes solar heat
gain. "If clear glass had been used, I'm not sure anyone could
have afforded the mechanical systems necessary to run this building,"
explains Feldmann. "We estimate the blue glass cuts the cost
roughly in half."
"In the end... we took out nearly 20 percent from the building's
original estimate," recalls Feldmann. He praises Wausau for
their help, "They work with us hand-in-hand: What's the best
way to flash this, the best way to install this, the most cost-effective
system for this. By bringing them into our design process early,
they've helped us solve problems that we weren't even aware of."
A total of 59 units ranging in size from 700- to 8,000-square-feet
now fill the nine-story building. Situated close to the river and
the rest of Downtown Des Moines, Whiteline's residents enjoy great
views, as well as walking access to shops, dining and other entertainment.
For leasing information, please see www.WhitelineLofts.com.
for more information about Wausau Windows and Wall systems