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Corner of Mckee and South Fish Hatchery Roads, Fitchburg, Wisconsin
The project before you was envisioned as the first of a series of four structures utilizing Prairie design principles for a building site at a major intersection.
Among the major goals of the development team were: to create building massing, visible from the intersection; present strong identification through signage and dramatic lighting; and to avoid presenting a strip mall identity.
To avoid a strip mall appearance we "turned the corner" on the building, allowing a three-dimensional countenance thus avoiding retail locations that felt like the "end of the tail". This dual street presentation is further enhanced by two tubular metal entry arches, creating energy and a defined "port" or sense of arrival for each facade.
The building mass requirement actually solved two problems at once. We raised the wall height not only to create a stronger profile but also to allow a continuous "signage band" above the windows. The roof pitch was also increased beyond the normal Prairie pitch to create height. The overhang allowed a covered walk between retailers and further enhanced the strength of the building. We then avoided the standard signage bulkhead detail at the fascia and tucked the sign panel under the overhang. This was a bold move but has proven successful due to our early study verifying positive view lines from the intersection and a carefully engineered lighting arrangement creating a continuous "floating" band for retail identification.
Architect: Linville Architects, LLC
Developer: Krupp-McGrath Venture
Land Planner: Schreiber/Anderson Associates
Contractor: Krupp Construction
Photographer: Joe DeMaio