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Design & Planning
Minneapolis Contractor Rocks One Sweet, Sustainable Deck
July 08 2019
Decking Sustainability Design & Planning

Pat Noonan, founder and owner of the Deck and Basement Company, one of the largest custom deck builders in Minnesota, has just completed a cherry of a project. Literally.

Pat and his crew of skilled craftsmen designed and built an original custom composite deck for Rock the Garden, a one-day outdoor music festival in the garden of the world-famous Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, MN.

Beyond great music in a beautiful setting, Rock the Garden is a zero-waste event, where most, if not all the waste produced is composted or recycled. The perfect place for a composite deck made with recycled materials.

Here’s how he did it.

Design Strikes A Musical Chord

When Noonan was awarded the job by Jesse Singh, CEO of AZEK TimberTech, he wasn’t surprised. This was the second year he was challenged to “come up with something creative” for the popular event. And Pat delivered. Again.

“I was inspired by the awesome music at the event,” Noonan said. “So, I started sketching up deck designs that were musical and lyrical, that flowed like a song. But suddenly, instruments came to mind and I drew up a guitar because I really liked the idea of the long neck acting as a ramp. And what is rock without a guitar?”

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After a few refinements, Pat presented his idea to TimberTech and it was all systems go. Now, it was time to get to work. They had a short time to go from Pat’s pencil design to the day of the big event. 

The Materials Matter

The next step was selecting the right materials. Noonan’s Deck and Basement Company has been working exclusively with TimberTech AZEK composite decking for over 20 years. And for good reason, according to Pat.

“My favorite product is AZEK’s Vintage Collection because I love their natural colors and the way the texture catches the sun at different angles. In fact, I lay the boards in alternating directions to create amazing patterns that change throughout the day. For the Rock the Garden deck, I also used their new Multi-Width Decking because the varying board widths and colors gave me unlimited creative possibilities.”

And Pat isn’t kidding when he says “unlimited.” Pat’s final design incorporated all three board widths, as well as all six available colors. With their wire-brushed, low-gloss texture, naturally varied grain and nuanced highlights, Pat and his team were able to mix and match styles to create something totally unique.

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A Design of Note

With the materials selected, the only thing left to do was build. But while the Deck and Basement crew shifted into high gear, Pat had another stroke of genius. He decided to inlay giant musical notes from one of his favorite songs into the frets of the guitar’s neck. All made from composite decking materials.

With a skilled combo of heat bending and detailed cutting, Pat carved out the opening notes to an iconic rock anthem. They fit perfectly into the deck and the feel-good vibe of the music festival. The curvy treble clef alone was nearly seven feet tall and 40” wide. But when working with TimberTech AZEK materials, Pat and his team were like a well-tuned band hitting every note in-sync.

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On the day of the festival, thousands of people attended and rocked out to everything from great local bands to global chart-toppers like Courtney Barnett and The National. People were continuously lined up on the neck ramp of the guitar deck to get a picture of themselves in front of an embedded digital screen Noonan had worked into the design. To put it musically, the deck was a HIT for Noonan and his team.

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Go Against the Grain

A music festival that produces nothing but great times and zero waste is an idea that goes against the grain. So too is a designer/builder who refuses to use traditional wood in favor of fully recycled composite materials.

Together, we’re proud to orchestrate our ingenuity, creativity and hard work to leave the planet in better shape than the way we found it. You can Go Against the Grain and join in our chorus of sustainability by learning more about our sustainability efforts.