BEHIND-THE-SCENES: Fayetteville Whole Foods’ ceiling bookshelf

By: Travis Estvold
14 June 2016

When images or project content draw a lot of interest on our social media accounts, whenever we’re able, we like to post additional information regarding on how they came to be. Today, we describe the amazing “ceiling bookshelf” image recently shared on CTA’s Instagram account:

From team members Jerome Alamayehu and Cory Nelson:

The design of the bar at Whole Foods Market in Fayetteville, AR, which opened March 2016, demonstrates simplicity in design in its use of a common object, a book/bookcase, as the main design element to define the space. WFM’s project goal was to create a space that was familiar but also elegant. A bookcase with real books was designed to begin as a backdrop for seating that folded over and continued on to become the ceiling.

Designing a bookcase to feel as if it were floating overhead, while keeping the look of books stacked on bookcase shelves, while incorporating typical ceiling elements such as lighting and diffusers, was a creative effort between CTA’s structural, mechanical, and electrical engineers; and our architects, the contractor, and the owner. Ongoing discussions with the client also led to the selection of cool color tones for the books, furniture fabrics, and tile, in combination with rich wood finishes. The result is a recognizable but unique experience for the end-users and patrons.

You’ll notice in the first photo below, in order to cut down on weight, the team specified the books be chopped down by two-thirds of their size. However, you can’t tell when you’re looking up at the spines from below.

CTA’s project team included:

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