By Don Tomasi AIA

TLCD Architecture’s downtown Santa Rosa Luther Burbank Savings Headquarters Branch project is beginning to change colors, going from bright yellow to black. The “black’ is a spray-applied waterproof membrane, the first installation step of an innovative building exterior referred to as a “rear-ventilated rainscreen” system. The black waterproof membrane will keep the building watertight.

In the next few weeks black aluminum channels will be installed over this membrane, then overlaid with stunning wood veneered panels. The panels will be attached to the aluminum from behind, with no visible fasteners. Since the waterproof membrane will keep the building dry, these panels serve a function that is strictly aesthetic. The space between the waterproof membrane is “ventilated” and is open at the top, bottom, and at panel joints. In the case of this project, the freedom to design exterior panels with open joints and without any visible means of attachment allows for a precise, clean aesthetic.

Tim Maloney of Technical Imagery Studios in Santa Rosa is documenting the construction of Luther Burbank Savings Headquarters Branch with time sequence photography.  This “time-lapse” documentation of the construction process can be viewed at: