Seat Walls Breathe Life into Campus

A series of sleek, artistic seat walls at the University of Michigan—designed by Stoss to create a luxurious and lively quad that can accommodate performances, events and everyday activities— stand as an example of the endless possibilities with custom precast concrete. The stunning Gerstacker Grove, located on the university’s north campus, breathes new life into an underutilized area—where previously the most notable features were well-worn footpaths in the grass. After months of construction, the $6.9 million project has been renovated and modernized to incorporate a unique central plaza with custom precast seat walls surrounded by a green quad, providing a striking space where students c


Indelible Drawings Carved in Concrete

Precast concrete is one of the most durable and economical building materials, can be expressed in unique and artful applications. The offices of Foster + Partners architects embraced an intriguing process innovation in a precast application in Fortaleza Hall at the newest addition to the Johnson Wax company headquarters in Racine, Wisc. The new building was built to commemorate the family’s journeys to Fortaleza, Brazil. Like a theater-in- the-round, it features a magnificent circular glass façade and roof rising two stories above a below-grade, conical reception hall with wooden mosaic floors and precast concrete walls. The precast walls feature a subtle grayscale mural of a Brazilian palm