Kansas City Union Station
Union Station has been a Kansas City icon since opening its doors in 1914 and is still cherished today for its architectural beauty nearly 110 years later. As a place of history, legend, mystery, hardship and ultimately triumph, Union Station stands as one of Kansas City’s most significant local landmarks. Its importance is attributed to its timeless beaux-arts architecture, record-breaking passenger numbers, forlorn closure or flourishing redevelopment and revitalization – but most of all, to its intimate connection with Kansas City’s postmodern history.
The Splash Lab was honored and privileged to collaborate with PGAV Architects for the bathroom redesign of Union Station’s upper-level Train Hall and lower-level Science Center & Planetarium. With our help, PGAV put the finishing touches on one of the region’s finest cultural resources dedicated to science education, the celebration of community and the preservation of history. Read on to learn how we navigated Union Station’s design challenges and created versatile bathroom solutions for its two distinct bathroom areas.
The main challenge PGAV faced when considering bathroom designs for Union Station’s Train Hall and Science Center was creating distinct bathrooms that would cater to the unique aesthetics of each space. Bathrooms in the Train Hall had to fit within the context of rich history and classic stylings, while bathrooms in the Science Center & Planetarium had to evoke a modern, almost futuristic appeal. We were the perfect partners to help PGAV bring this design vision to life.
“Timelessness” embodies the design strategy we implemented – both in terms of aesthetics that never go out of style, and those that push the boundaries of modern bathroom spaces. Together, we found a versatile solution that would utilize a single combination of products to create two very different bathroom styles. Our Channel collection sensor taps, soap dispensers and hand driers in tandem with our Monolith trough basin system culminated in the ideal solution.
The upper-level bathrooms off the historic Train Hall feature our Channel products in a beautiful brass PVD finish. These fixtures complement marbled white walls, dark woodwork, an elegant lighting scheme and traditional brass accents throughout these spaces. The modular design of our Monolith basin provides excellent utility in Union Station’s high-traffic bathrooms, accommodating up to 5 users simultaneously. Further, a white Corian finish on its solid surface material seamlessly melds with the established décor, while boasting extreme durability and cleanliness. The result is a series of bathroom spaces that honor this heritage Train Hall and serve as serene refresh points for those traveling to and from this historic destination.
The Science Center & Planetarium feature a similar configuration of Chanel fixtures and Monolith basin system, but use different finishes to create a distinct design aesthetic. The sensor taps, soap dispensers and hand dryers here are finished in a polished satin, reflecting the contemporary and youthful nature of the surrounding area. All are mounted on silver access plates with etched iconography clearly indicating the function of each fixture. Like the Train Hall bathrooms, these spaces utilize the Monolith basin system for superb multi-user functionality and easy maintenance. In all, the Science Center & Planetarium bathrooms emphasize the sleek design scheme of their surroundings while creating intuitive spaces for adults and children.