After voters in the growing community of Missouri City, Texas, approved a 2015 bond issue to expand and renovate their branch library, county officials began charting their course for a project that would bring the aging facility into the digital age.

Keeping up with technology was important to the suburban Houston community, so the city pulled together a plan that included a three-story, 11,009-square-foot addition with a soaring balcony, study rooms, a computer lab, self-service checkout machines, and more. The first thing they did was hire Merriman Holt Powell Architects (MHPA) to design and manage the update.

“Our office did the original building in 1991, and we were asked back by the county to do the expansion,” said Michelle Carter, principal with MHPA.

The firm worked to bring the 30-year-old library into the 21st century with iconic new imagery created by a sharp, triangular, three-story design that points to the east.

“The site defined the shape of the addition,” Carter said. “The county wanted the addition to be a beacon for the public, so they could see the library and the overall county complex.”

Once its designs were approved, MHPA began the process of selecting materials and a contractor. The firm had a history of working with Wade Architectural Systems, a CENTRIA dealer, and began considering metal exterior products that would best highlight its striking design.

“We really like the products provided by CENTRIA,” Carter said. “They always enhance our architecture.”

Wade project manager Brian Selig said MHPA was interested in using a modular metal panel like CENTRIA's Intercept. From that point on, Selig worked closely with MHPA, identifying the right products, developing precise specifications, and choosing the ideal subcontractor.

It did not take long for them to choose Underwood Sheet Metal to do the installation work. It was an easy choice because of the company’s prior experience with Wade Architectural Systems and with MHPA. Also, Underwood had extensive experience with CENTRIA products. The company had recently completed a high-profile installation project on the Sarah Campbell Blaffer Foundation Center for Conservation, part of a substantial expansion to Houston’s Museum of Fine Arts.

Next, the design team selected CENTRIA’s Intercept Entyre panels due to their smooth, unbroken appearance—adding to the building design’s sleek, isometric style.

“There are a lot of good reasons for a public entity to choose products like Intercept,” Selig said.

Intercept Entyre is large and flexible, capable of creating angular shapes called for by MHPA’s iconic, triangular design. The large module sizes provide smooth, unmatched edge-to-edge widths. Meanwhile, with no plastic cores, the panel is environmentally friendly and safely recyclable, Selig said.

For the perforated, vertical spans holding the library’s signage, the team chose CENTRIA's MR3-36 EcoScreen product to create a wall that controls light, offers shade, and provides a counterpoint to the building’s horizontal, angular aesthetics. EcoScreen is a unique fabrication, providing a 10% to 40% open area, controlling light and air movement, and creating the effect of a translucent screen.

According to Underwood Project Manager Jeff Bridges, it was simple to install.

“That was a day's worth of work,” he said. “That was really easy, and the rest of the project was nearly as fast. Once we were on the job, we were there maybe two weeks.”

The new Missouri City Library held a grand reopening on June 1, 2020, and everyone involved was pleased with the its striking new appearance.

Wade Architectural Systems features the library on one of the company’s project pages, while MHPA highlights its favorite aspects here.

To learn more about CENTRIA and the products used on Phase II of the Missouri City Branch Library, visit the CENTRIA site or contact a representative.