Cladding a New Marquee Location on Cape Cod

Cape Cod 5, a regional bank with sites around Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and southeastern Massachusetts, wanted to design its 5,600-square-foot marquee site to reflect a blend of New England tradition and modern environmental efficiency.

cape cod 5 Nantucket

Located in a three-acre space surrounded by highways, the bank needed to prioritize public space and visual aesthetics. Because it sits at the gateway of an established retail district, the architectural products had to be unusually durable, virtually maintenance-free and easy to shepherd through the state’s labyrinthine approval process.

Clay Smook, the architect that Cape Cod 5 charged with the design project, opted to create a rainscreen using CUPACLAD. He said:

I wanted the project to feel forward thinking, to really spring from the site.

CUPACLAD 201 Vanguard offered the sleek, modern appearance that served Smook’s vision for the freestanding retail bank building. It also provided unusual longevity—critical to the structure’s green design. Although retail properties are often framed out of engineered wood products and clad in fiber cement siding for short-term use, Cape Cod 5’s location could function as a local landmark for the next 50 years or more.

cape cod 5 Massachusetts

Cape Cod 5 entered this project with a distinctive vision. Think of the Berkeley Building in Boston, where a light shaft blinks if there’s a rain delay in the baseball game, or consider the Citgo sign, another monument people work around.

On a smaller scale to their headquarters, Cape Cod 5 wanted to construct a similar marquee building for Plymouth, and the bank needed the appropriate raw materials for that kind of construction.

Although slate might seem an unusual choice for wall cladding, CUPACLAD proved easy to cut and handle, and the construction crew installed it without incident. In fact, the exposed stainless-steel clips that attach the cladding to the wall added architectural interest to the open-space design.

cupaclad 201 vanguard

“Before I built this building, I had been hearing about rainscreen products for 15 years,” Smook said,

but this product, with its exposed clips, is so different. When I was growing up, they just nailed wood to the outside of the building, and you didn’t see any fasteners. This system shows there’s more going on than just material glued to the side of the building.

The earthy aesthetic, natural material and longevity of slate could make Cape Cod 5 a model for environmentally efficient construction across southeastern Massachusetts. Smook said:

I’d love to see this product employed for institutional use like schools, government buildings and museums, because these are the gold standard of architectural projects.

slate wall cladding

He also hopes to use it in homes and smaller sites where he can wrap it from the outside to an interior wall; but for now, the retail bank’s prime location is serving as his opportunity to experiment with the rainscreen slate.

We’re pretty excited to see this thing lit up and gleaming with a personality of its own.

If you are an architect and want to include CUPACLAD in your next project, we have a full technical team to help you. What can we do for you?