NASCAR Hall of Fame; Photo Credit: nascarhall.com
Located about a minute walk from the Charlotte Convention Center, the NASCAR Hall of Fame opened its doors to the public in May 2010. Charlotte, dubbed “NASCAR Valley,” has been intertwined with the day-to-day dealings of NASCAR from the beginnings of stock-car racing. Designed by the esteemed architectural firm known for their award-winning designs, Pei Cobb Freed & Partners, used steel and glass throughout in their design of the building.
The Zahner Company was brought in to build the structural form which wraps the building’s facade. A twisting stainless steel ribbon races around the perimeter to create the concept of infinity, indicating a sort of infinite path for racing. To create the building’s möbius (twisted cylinder), it required the design of a unique curvilinear shape. To produce this, Zahner engineers implemented the ZEPPS, the patented system for building unique architectural forms. Using ZEPPS enabled the architects to design simple and straight-forward construction of an otherwise immensely complex shape.
The möbius is clad in Angel Hair stainless steel, another patented product developed by Zahner, to reduce the glare and bright spots while providing a satin finish. Even in bright sunlight, the surface has significantly less glare than mill finishes on stainless steel. Since 1897 and across four generations, the family-owned business of A. Zahner Company, has been producing highly crafted architectural metalwork for artists and architects around the world.
METALCON proudly welcomed Mr. Zahner, President of the family-owned Zahner Company, as a guest speaker at a METALCON show several years ago. Mr. Zahner, if you are listening, how about a return METALCON appearance to showcase your work?
Charlotte’s history with racing began when the Charlotte Motor Speedway was designed and built in 1959 and held the first World 600 NASCAR race in June 1960. Charlotte is home to more than 80 percent of the racing teams in the Craftsman Truck, Busch and Cup series and the NASCAR industry is said to bring an estimated $4 billion economic impact to the city and surrounding area. The NASCAR Hall of Fame is a high-tech attraction, designed to educate and entertain race fans and non-fans alike, and includes artifacts, hands-on exhibits, and a 278-person state-of-the-art theater. Apparently, it is fairly common to see NASCAR drivers stop by to interact with visitors on any given day. Known as Charlotte’s #1 attraction, be sure to carve out time to visit while in town for METALCON.