edmonton architecture firms dialog lenmak exterior cladding

The Oliver – Downtown Edmonton Highrise with Aesthetic Appeal

When you approach Jasper Avenue and 122nd Street in downtown Edmonton, you’ll be struck by a 12-storey high-rise with glimmering penny copper accents. Artfully placed between silver metallic panels, this cladding was chosen with the distinct intention of catching your eye. The Oliver is undoubtedly part of an architectural renaissance revitalizing the city’s core.

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Engaged by Dialog and Clark Builders, Lenmak was met with the challenge of providing a modern, panelized product that had an aesthetic, yet sustainable, appeal. On a budget.

We spoke with Wayne Mack, Manager of Architectural Products at Clark Builders, to understand how the team of stakeholders achieved the finished look:

What was your role on this project?

Clark Builders was the General Contractor, and we also self-performed, meaning we have a field force that installs the architectural cladding and building envelope materials.

How did you become involved with Lenmak?

I was called into an early budgeting meeting with the owner, architect and GC reps, in which we looked at a wide variety of products and looks for the building. It came down to enlisting Ray at Lenmak to help design the look the architect was after: a long, linear look, where the panels had depth and were layered. Ray provided a cost effective solution that looked the best.

“We chose Lenmak because of their ability to have a highly customizable panel. With their equipment, manufacturing ability and automation, Lenmak could provide a lot of customization into their panels.”

After a couple of design meetings, we had a basic concept of how the panels would stack and layer amongst each other. The architects then produced the drawings, and Clark took those drawings to budget them before receiving a go-ahead from the owner and architect to proceed.

Clark’s Architectural Products Department then performed the work to install the cladding. Manufacturing and logistics from Lenmak included transport to site in small batches on an as-needed basis to suit the construction schedule. Ray was highly flexible; we worked on a few details after the fact, including ease of installation. There was great collaboration working from manufacturer to installer.

“On a fixed budget and fixed deadline, we brought it in on time.”

How important is sustainability when choosing exterior cladding products?

Today’s world is all about sustainability and recyclability, so it is always a big consideration when we’re looking and selecting products for use in cladding. We let the architect guide us in product selection, so Dialog was the instigators for choosing the aluminum. It has recycled content, is a recyclable product, and stands up to the weather and the elements; it won’t rust over time like a steel. The architect, Donna Clare of Dialog, put in that stipulation.

Is local manufacturing a bonus or a must when it comes to product selection?

It depends on the project; in this case, the project site and lay down space were constricted, so there was no place to bring in materials ahead of time. Especially on a downtown site where you have neighbors in close proximity, you don’t have the luxury to pre-order and bring all your materials to site at the same time.

“On-time delivery was a big reason for success and Lenmak’s ability to do this was a big reason we went to them for the manufacturing.”

The benefits of being able to self-perform are huge, but having a good supplier behind you is also very important. When I select a supplier I’m looking for someone who will be a part of the team.

“We want suppliers like Lenmak that are able to manufacture and deliver on time.”

In construction there are always variables and tolerances and things that change as installation progresses; for example, we played with how some of the panels stacked and lined up and played with the length. Lenmak’s ability to adapt and change a panel length mid-order – being a local source was very good for that. If there was ever a question, it was easy to “go see” on site without a long delivery time afterward.

We have to talk about the finished product.

This is a good looking building. Everybody – I heard first hand from owners and the architect – they are very pleased with the end results. This is one of the first rental apartment buildings that has been built downtown in a long time.

“They knocked it out of the park.”

Architecture Firm: Dialog

Architect: Donna Clare

General Contractor: 

Clark Builders

Location: Edmonton, AB

Product Used: Latitude™

Our Latitude™ product line is made to order and produced on demand to meet your needs – and your budget. Available in a variety of widths, depths, and lengths, it can bend around corners and soffits, and comes in dozens of prefinished colours. Better still – it pairs the cost-effectiveness of single-skin cladding with the beauty of architectural panel systems. Latitude™ panels include pre- and post-consumer recycled materials (for possible LEED credits) and remain 100% recyclable at the end of their service life.

Lenmak Exterior Innovations