Tacoma Tent & Awning

Project Details

Fabric 1

Producer/Manufacturer: Glen Raven Custom Fabrics LLC
Primary Use: Main Fabric

Architect Company
Ankrom Moisan

Fabrication Company
Tacoma Tent & Awning

Project Manager Name
Myles Burich

Project Manager Company
Tacoma Tent & Awning

Please describe the project specifications

The project involved four modified dome awnings with a conical-style roof designed to align perfectly with the contours of each individual unique architectural feature.
The Tacoma Elks Temple is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was designed by É. Frère Champney, a graduate of the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. It was built in the second Renaissance Revival style in 1915, and our client was determined to create an awning design that paid true homage to the building.
The challenge of renovating a magnificent historic building that pays a perfect tribute yet also satisfies various stakeholders that were often at odds was daunting, at first. It required substantial patience and perseverance to navigate through the demands of an exceptionally stringent Historic Preservation Commission, along with the strong opinions of the owners and architects. Then, considerable creativity was needed to translate these requirements to meet modern building codes and solve numerous technical issues.

For example, the attachment method could not disturb the narrow band that surrounds the windows above the doors, and attaching through the sides of the awnings could not obstruct the awnings from being removed from their locations. We designed custom 3-part brackets to solve this issue, and they passed the complex structural engineering review.

The end result thrilled all of the stakeholders, and the awnings are considered a significant contribution to the resounding success of the renovation project.

What is unique or complex about the project?

Adding awnings to a beautiful historic building is a rare opportunity for us and we are very proud of the project for several reasons. The complexity of the process and the impressive outcome are most important, but the renovation of this long neglected iconic landmark also symbolizes the resurgence of downtown Tacoma. There is tremendous local pride involved here. Also, the site is just minutes from our own building and the McMenamins brand is highly respected in the Pacific Northwest for their meticulous approach to historic renovations and the quality of their hospitality.

Awnings are frequently used to provide an architectural feature where one is sorely needed, but this is a great example of how awnings can add to the beauty of an already gorgeous building.

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