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COOLSPRINGS GALLERIA | FRANKLIN, TN

Question: How do you go about renovating a popular shopping mall with out disrupting standard operations? Answer: On the night shift, with creative surfacing solutions from tile manufacturer Crossville!

CoolSprings Galleria—a 1.1 million square foot, 165-tenant mall located in Franklin, Tennessee, underwent a massive transformation of its common areas without interruption to daily business. This feat was achieved thanks to dedicated teams working overnight hours, utilizing innovative products and materials to bring a modern design vision to fruition.

In renovating the CoolSprings Galleria, the interior architect team from Omniplan was tasked with creating a design that would endure the severe wear and tear of a retail environment long-term, as well as live up to the crisp, clean promise of the CoolSprings moniker. The plans included renovation of the 500-seat Oasis Food Court, common pathways, and all mall-access bathrooms, for a total of 140,000 square feet of common space. To address the challenges, the design team looked to Crossville for durable, beautiful floor and wall covering solutions.

The project began on April 1, 2016 with a hard deadline of October 15th of the same year—a mere five-and-a-half month time frame for completion. Adding to the challenging timing, the mall opens its doors at 6:30 a.m. to accommodate mall walkers, trimming hours from the night time hours in which the installation teams had to get their work done. Mark Brooks, technical service manager on the project, elaborates on the how that impacted the installation. “The most unique challenge for the CoolSprings Galleria project was how quickly the work that was taking place throughout the night had to be turned around for typical mall use. CoolSprings Galleria has a lot of dedicated mall walkers, and they open their doors at 6:30 a.m. in order to accommodate the walkers. This means an extremely short timeline to complete work during the night.”

With its hard-wearing profile and attractive styles, porcelain tile is often a flooring of choice for mall environments, but the fact that Crossville collections are Tennessee-made and readily available, rather than imported, made them an even more appealing option for decision makers with CoolSprings’ ownership, CBL Properties. Leaders with CBL strongly preferred to source local materials for the project.

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Ultimately, the Shades by Crossville porcelain tile collection was specified for the mall floors. As is the case with all products manufactured at Crossville’s Tennessee plants, Shades is produced with third-party certified processes, contains recycled content, and holds Green Squared certification. All this ensures the product meets industry-recognized standards of sustainability.

In CoolSprings Galleria, Shades by Crossville was utilized in four cool tones: honed Frost, unpolished Mist, unpolished Ash and unpolished Thunder—all in both 6”x24” and 12”x24” formats. The formats were used in tandem to form tonal stripes of varying widths across the floor. This created a layered look reminiscent of sedimentary rock. The effect is both quintessentially modern in its use of tonality and multiple formats, yet also surprisingly timeless in its style.

For the wet walls of the bathrooms, the design team utilized Crossville’s unique Laminam solution for its clean, contemporary look. Laminam Filo Argento features a contemporary chain-mail texture, and the 1M x3M 3+ porcelain tiles created a stunning and stylish skin that will endure and maintain its inherent beauty, even in the harsh and wet conditions of a public bathroom. The remaining bathroom walls feature Crossville’s Ready to Wear in unpolished Button Up with accents of Groove Glass in the cool, grey Rumba tone.

Project designer Suzy McHenry of Omniplan shares an overview of the CoolSprings approach. “In our design, we sought to express Franklin’s unique regional influences with a contemporary aesthetic that stays true to the area—creating something authentic and timeless. Our design resolves authenticity with a new palette of modern materials that elevate the shopping experience. These finishes include stainless steel handrails, a dynamic porcelain tile pattern from material manufactured in Tennessee, and high-quality stone.”

To facilitate the successful installation of the Crossville porcelain tile, Laticrete products were used across the installation. Says Brooks, “The Laticrete products that were used on the project were all fast-setting in order to return the main mall areas back to service in a timely manner.” In the mall and food court, Laticrete NXT Level or Drytek Levelex, NXT Skim, Fracture Ban, 4-XLT Rapid or 4-XLT, Permacolor Select and Latasil were utilized, and in the bathrooms, NXT Level or Drytek Levelex, NXT Skim, Hydro Ban, 4-XLT, Spectralock Pro Premium and Latasil were used.

“The renovation of the mall has changed the entire look of the facility,” reports Brooks. “The design of the tile installation gave the mall a much more modern appearance. The large format tile gives the mall a very clean look.”