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Children’s Ability Center Restores Vibrant Appearance with Ultradurable Coating

Kynar Aquatec®-based architectural coating delivers long-lasting color stability and lifecycle cost savings in extreme South Florida weathering conditions.

Jewish Adoption and Foster Care Options (JAFCO) provides homes, foster care, adoption, and other support services to abused, neglected, and at-risk children in South Florida. When the nonprofit organization expanded its mission to support families raising children with developmental disabilities, it built an innovative and unique Children’s Ability Center unlike any other in the country.

Opened it 2014, the bright and airy 43,000-square-foot facility was designed in the style of Frank Lloyd Wright with colorful circular and rectangular walls, large rooms, and pastel-hued furniture to provide a comfortable and safe atmosphere. Outside, the two-story building features a sweeping canopy and a façade of striking red, orange, yellow, and blue colors to create a vibrant and welcoming appearance.

Sunshine State Weathering Issues

Keeping building facades in pristine condition year after year can be quite difficult and expensive in South Florida, considering that most coatings will rapidly degrade in the area’s brutal humidity, high temperatures, salt air, and harsh sunlight. Designs incorporating deep, brighter-hued shades, such as the red, orange, yellow, and blue colors on the Children’s Ability Center, are especially prone to severe fading issues.

After only five years of exposure in the intense weathering conditions, the Children’s Ability Center was showing signs of significant wear and tear. The colorful stucco façade—originally painted with a construction-grade acrylic—was significantly fading, chalking, and deteriorating. With the harsh weather clearly taking its toll on the building’s aesthetics, JAFCO turned to the professional experts at nearby Restore Construction Group for a restoration solution that would stand the test of time.

Desired Long-Lasting Protection

When it came to the selection of a restoration coating for the stucco façade, the building owner’s primary goals were longevity, accurate color matching, and steadfastness of the bold color pallet. To meet these needs, the Restore Construction Group recommended an upgrade from a premium acrylic latex paint to a much more durable and longer-lasting fluoropolymer topcoat finish, called NeverFade® Façade Restoration Coatings.  

The NeverFade® product from APV Engineered Coatings is formulated with Kynar Aquatec® PVDF emulsions, which provides similar long-lasting durability, extreme weatherability, and color-retention properties as Kynar 500® resin-based coatings. This waterborne Kynar Aquatec®-based architectural coating also resists dirt, staining, microbiological growth, and corrosion, and it is excellent at preventing  water from penetrating the surface, since PVDF is naturally hydrophobic. 

Easily applied to a variety of substrates, the NeverFade® topcoat is custom-color matched to each customer’s specification in bold and rich colors and is backed by a 15-year product-and-labor warranty against color fading by APV. These features and benefits of the NeverFade® coating made it the obvious choice for achieving the long-term aesthetic goals of the Children’s Ability Center. 

“Taking into consideration the inconvenience and expense of repainting the building every five years, the building owner was convinced that the high-performance NeverFade® topcoat was the best solution for meeting their project goals,” said Norge Arnaiz,” principal of the Restore Construction Group. “Additionally, the very limited 10-year warrantee that came with the originally specified acrylic paint did not cover color fading, and the product manufacturer could not precisely match the specified colors.”

Restoration Gets Underway

The Kynar Aquatec®-based NeverFade® coatings were precision-blended by APV to match JAFCO’s trademark deep red, orange, yellow, and blue custom color scheme. The project team then produced drawdown cards and mockups on the structure to conduct performance tests and confirm that the finishes and colors met the high expectations of the client.

The restoration started with repairing the concrete substrate and replacing most of the PVC reveals that break up the stucco in sections. The surface was then cleaned with pressure washers and covered with one coat of APV’s W-1500 Universal Primer. After all the surface preparation work was completed, the crews applied two coats of the Kynar Aquatec®-based NeverFade® topcoat finish using rollers and brushes per the coating manufacturer’s specified film thickness.

“The high-performance NeverFade® product had a creamy, rich texture with excellent workability and flowability properties,” said Arnaiz. “The coating evenly covered the building’s stucco profile and kept a nice wet edge with no roller marks, which is a challenge in the hot, humid Florida climate.” 

Colorful Aesthetic to Stand the Test of Time

The Children’s Ability Center now has a fresh and brighter new look, and the JAFCO management team is very pleased with the restored appearance of the exterior. Because color was so important to the building’s design, the project team knew the coating would need to stand up to the harsh South Florida weathering elements. The chosen Kynar Aquatec®-based NeverFade® coating is highly resistant to all of them, allowing for a lengthened lifespan of the colorful stucco façade.

“Our intent was to be budget conscious while providing a long-lasting beautiful aesthetic,” said Michael Moran, Facilities Director at JAFCO. “The high-performance NeverFade® product will not only retain its vibrant colorful appeal for a very long time but also provide significant cost savings by not having to repaint the facility every five years, which is a typical coating lifecycle in Florida.”

Kynar Aquatec® and Kynar 500® are registered trademarks of Arkema Inc.
NeverFade® is a registered trademark of APV Engineered Coatings.
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