Interior design of a LEED Gold certified high-rise: Designer Forum - July 2016

By Elyse Linowes

Linowes Design Associates (LDA) was hired by Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company to visualize, design and create the interiors for the newly built Ovation at Park Crest. The groundbreaking project became the first high-rise apartment as well as the first LEED Gold certified residential building in Tysons Corner, Virginia, just west of Washington, D.C. The 300-unit, 19-story building offers tenants a resort-like experience with a variety of amenities and spaces, including a lounge, game room, cyber room and expansive pool. 

The concept for Ovation at Park Crest began with more of a transitional design, incorporating high-end finishes with both modern and nostalgic elements for a distinctive aesthetic. The project was conceived with an assortment of flooring in mind, ranging from stone slabs of green onyx and white marble to porcelain tiles and carpet selections. The flooring specification had a major impact on the successful achievement of the overall design vision. 

For this particular building, LDA desired a high visual impact in the main lobby entry. It was ultimately the flooring concept that allowed the design team to achieve this impact, as the flooring choices were a crucial component of the vision. When sourcing the materials to complement the design and bring the lobby floor to life, the team began with polished vein-cut green onyx as the focal point. The vibrant onyx not only provided a stark contrast to the classically designed background of the space, but it also helped to achieve the wow factor the team sought. 

Cut 2cm thick and placed over a depressed slab that included LED strip lighting beneath, the green onyx was installed adjacent to white Zebrano marble mixed with Stellar White marble. The design team felt the white marble added an elegant yet striking component against the warmth of the backlit onyx. Special attention was paid to the center area of the lobby, and the work of art was finished by contrasting book matched grain patterns in the onyx against the linear stripes in the marble flooring.

Ovation at Park Crest was built to be a LEED Gold certified building. It includes a myriad of energy and water saving features, including electricity derived exclusively from green wind power, water efficient fixtures and EnergyStar appliances. In keeping with the certification goals, the design team wanted to ensure the flooring selections were sustainable as well, specifying only low VOC options. 

LDA chose to utilize a variety of products in the game room and Wi-Fi area from Bentley Mills. Bentley products offer the Cradle to Cradle Certified program, and all Bentley products are certified to meet the requirements of the Carpet and Rug Institute’s Green Label Plus test protocol. They also comply with the NSF/ANSI 140 Sustainable Carpet Assessment with a Gold level.

Next, LDA tackled the Ovation Park Crest lounge area, which also serves as the building’s event space for its tenants and guests. This space provided a challenge, as the team desired an interesting and intricate flooring design, yet one that was also durable enough to withstand the wear and tear of heavy foot traffic. Bentley worked with LDA on a custom broadloom to enhance the room’s warmth. The rich and colorful carpet, in charcoal grey with a citron green pattern, elegantly contrasts the crisp white lobby floor that is visible through the glass wall.

Off the lounge area, designers carved out a space for dining and meeting. For a more daring statement here, the team chose two contrasting colors of Armstrong laminate plank flooring. Excitement was added to the intimate space by strategically placing diagonal panels across the floor in these two contrasting colors. The transition from the custom carpet of the lounge to the dynamic two-tone stripes of the space is bold and beautiful. 

Two of the building’s more playful rooms then began to take shape, the cyber lounge and game room. The cyber lounge’s more youthful look was designed with broadloom from Bentley’s Edge City collection. Since this room is located at the far end of the building, the flooring needed to help draw tenants to the space. This was achieved through the creation of horizontal stripes in four bright carpet colors with varied proportions of each color. The vision for this room came to life with a clean and vibrant look, while still feeling warm and inviting to guests. 

The game room flooring included an interesting combination of custom broadloom by Bentley and porcelain tile. One of the game room’s more unique features is the curved, porcelain entryway, designed to complement the serpentine ceiling above. A 12”x24” tile called Silver Graffiato from Mosaic Tile Company, with a smooth reflective finish, was specified to provide a durable surface upon entry. The surprising yet smooth transition from the tile to a lively custom carpet pattern creates interest while allowing the absorption of sound, often of laughter, that comes from a game room setting, and promotes an overall comfortable and cozy atmosphere for all ages. 

The Ovation at Park Crest’s elevator lobbies are a blend of drama and elegance, designed with the familiar green vein onyx slab in combination with the airy, striated white and grey marble tile floor. A bit of drama was added to the elevator bank by continuing the onyx slab up the wall to the ceiling, creating a unique pilaster. The main corridor floors for the amenity spaces continued the design concept from the lobby with hints of green onyx and Stellar White marble tile formations. The floors were designed overall to give off a light, neutral tone, which offers tenants a subtle offset from the various and vibrant amenity room flooring. 

For the tenant units, the floors were clad with Natural Touch laminate planks by Kaindl, chosen for their durability as well as tenant preferences for hard surface flooring, especially in the living areas. The varied tones in the laminate lend a warm, realistic look of wood. In the tenant bathrooms, 12”x24” double loaded porcelain tiles were specified in a soft creme color. 

Overall, all flooring surfaces used at Ovation at Park Crest added great impact, unique design elements, sustainable features and general functionality.

Copyright 2016 Floor Focus 

Related Topics:Lumber Liquidators, Carpet and Rug Institute, Armstrong Flooring