Zinc: The Right Call in an Emergency

Legacy ER, Allen, TX

In an emergency, patients need both calm reassurance and spot-on professional care. Zinc paneling sends both of these messages to patients at Legacy ER, Allen, TX, and their family members—even before they step inside the modern, freestanding facility and interact with staff. 

That dual messaging is possible because zinc itself is paradoxical in nature. Principal architect Yen Ong says that despite its cool hue, zinc is sustainable, durable, and even warm and charming. 

“We really wanted to capture the essence of an ER physician’s role in a patient’s life,” he says. “I think we were successful in doing that, especially with zinc, because the material is very flexible, very durable, and very precise.  It captures all of the attributes of physicians that patients in this situation want to see.” 

Perforated panels

The exterior of the structure features zinc panels with an integrated lighting system. Perforated panels clad overhangs and soffits, and zinc standing seam panels cover the facade. Overall, about 17,000 sq. ft. of blue-grey RHEINZINK panels were utilized.

The large, sloping soffits clad with perforated panels provide a signature look and create diffuse building lighting. “The perforations are larger toward the outer edges and smaller toward the inside to achieve the gradient of light,” Ong says. “At night, the diffused lighting pattern is quite evident.”

Distributor MetalTech‒USA, Peachtree City, GA, fabricated the zinc panels. The panels, which were integral in executing the architect’s vision, help provide exterior views from within the building and peripheral lighting. Varying the perforation patterns on each panel also achieves a gradient reading that adds to the perceptual depth of the building geometry. Five different perforation patterns were coordinated with two different panel types and sizes.


 “The greatest challenge was the set-up and programming that was necessary to get the panels fabricated properly,” said MetalTech project manager Michael Love.  “But the end result was worth all of our hard work.” 

The panels feature trimless “zero edge” detailing that, according to Ong, suggests “flight, lightness, precision and speed.”

“This was one of the most challenging jobs that we’ve faced,” states Mark Standifer, senior project manager, at Ramon Franklin LLC, Fort Worth, TX, which installed the panels. “I’ve never been on a roof where we didn’t trim it—there’s no fabricated 10’ long trim pieces or eave pieces.

 Standifer adds: “The architect really wanted a ‘trimless’ look.  And you have the edge of the panel tying into another panel going into a completely different plane.  There’s not a 90 degree corner on the exterior of the building.  We’re familiar with RHEINZINK through previous jobs but we had never seen one like this.” 

Yen Ong concurs that the job was challenging, particularly when it came to achieving the zero edge. 

 “It took a lot of precision and structure behind the zinc panels,” Ong said.  “One of the remarkable attributes of Ramon Franklin is that they really worked with us on the detailing of the panels.  There’s no 3 in.-wide coping or flashing as you would typically see.” 

Overall, the design is intended to advance discourse on the architecture of the healing environment, Ong says. 

This is the second Legacy ER building designed by 5G Studio Collaborative, Dallas, TX.  According to Ong, the success of the design of the first building, located in Frisco, TX, and the branding and business opportunities it enabled, convinced the client to push forward with an edgy, contemporary design for the Allen facility. 



Legacy ER 


Allen, TX 

MCA Member Manufacturer

RHEINZINK America, Inc.


5G Studio Collaborative, Dallas, TX 


UEB Builders, Scottsdale, AZ

Metal Installer

Ramon Franklin LLC, Fort Worth, TX 


RHEINZINK perforated Reveal Panels

RHEINZINK Standing Seam Panels 

Date of Completion


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