Chicago White Sox retail store is a ballpark success
Submitted by CCI Flooring, Inc. in Crest Hill, IL
By Khara Dizmon, Concrete Network Managing Editor
The Chicago Sports Depot is a homerun for fans watching the games at U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago. Complete with all the apparel and souvenirs a White Sox fan could dream of, the 12,000 square foot, two-story store also has a unique, baseball-themed concrete floor. Using a metallic epoxy and unique stencil design, CCI Flooring in Chicago installed the flooring and helped carry the baseball tradition from the stadium into the store.
CCI landed the job from a referral of McHugh Construction, a GC they have worked with on several other projects. “CCI president, Bob Bauer, met with the designer of the store and helped collaborate on the floor’s design and the best product and installation method to use,” explains Bauer. “From there, we put a couple of mock ups on the floor for them to choose from. Once they approved the samples for color and texture, we proceeded with the floor.”
Two coats of metallic shimmer epoxy were installed next. “We squeegeed and rolled two coats on the floor,” says Bauer, “then we came back the next day and applied two more coats the same way. The epoxy is really thick and installation took place in October when temperatures were cool and required extra time for the epoxy to dry. Luckily, the store wasn’t opening soon, so we had the flexibility to take our time when necessary,” he says. “The thickness, though, is what really gives the floor that depth and variation in color.”
A stencil in the shape of a baseball and stitching were then applied to the floor. “The stencils were really the most challenging part of the job,” recalls Bauer. “Once the second coat of shimmer had cured, we laid out the stencil. It was very time-consuming and had to be completely accurate in terms of where the blueprints showed the stencil should be placed. It needed to line up with the continuing baseball design outside and on the windows,” he says. The stencil was taped in place, and then a clear primer (a really thin coat of epoxy) was rolled over it. “The stencil is fabric with little holes in it so the epoxy works through it,” explains Bauer. “We rolled it over and worked it down to stick, then we pulled up the tape around the perimeter.” The next day, the stencil was re-taped and another clear coat of epoxy was applied. The tape was removed immediately, and finally a clear coat was placed over all of the floor. A urethane topcoat was the final coating applied to the entire floor.
Another interesting part of the store included a set of stairs (30 steps in all) that were coated the same as the floor. “The stairs are really unique,” says Bauer. “We finished them just like the floor, but the electricians installed lights in each riser that can be programmed to flash with the beat of the music in the store. They also show images and spell out words, so if you’re standing in front of them at the right time, you might see them spell out ‘White Sox’ or something like that,” he says.
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