TUUCI brings high-performance shade to high-performance racing
Casual Living Staff -- Casual Living, February 19, 2013
TUUCI created a custom shade solution for the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, that encompasses 32 cantilevered shade structures.
As the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in Austin, Texas, neared completion in 2012, the project's architects identified the need for extensive shading for trackside VIP venues. Spectators in this area were promised the ultimate in racing excitement and luxury accommodations, which had to extend to shading, a press release states.
"Architects were originally considering a residential-grade product for this area, which is when I was brought into the picture," said H.C. Haynes, a marketing representative for outdoor products based in Austin. "It quickly became apparent to me that the track needed a highly engineered product that would also have the aesthetics you associate with international racing and that TUUCI was the only company qualified to take on the project."
TUUCI CEO Dougan Clarke and his engineering team visited the track and came away excited by the opportunity to tap into their extensive expertise with marine-grade shade products engineered for durability in high-wind environments.
"This project was extremely challenging," Clarke said. "The area to be shaded was huge and would require shade structures that could be mounted and tethered along an elevated viewing area. This is the type of challenge that's a perfect fit for our capabilities in creating highly engineered products that are also beautiful."
The custom solution created by TUUCI engineers encompasses 32 cantilevered shade structures that are 12 and a half foot square. Not only do these structures project an international, high-tech aesthetic look, they also assure the safety of spectators as cars race by at speeds close to 200 mph. Additionally, the structures are designed to be easily closed in the case of extreme weather conditions.
"We built the shade structures from stainless steel and anodized aluminum and covered them with TUUCI Tough Skins materials of Sunbrella fabric," Clarke said. "Our team tapped into our patented designs for cantilevered structures and also developed a special mount exclusively for this project."
The shade structures have proven successful for the COTA track, which not only hosts Formula 1 racing, but also sponsors numerous other high-end racing events.
"Everyone agrees that the project has been a huge success because of way that TUUCI was able to create shade structures that fit perfectly with the design of the track," Haynes said. "There is the added benefit of confidence in the safety and durability that TUUCI builds into its products, clearly demonstrating that the company is out front in performance design and manufacturing."
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