A Core Alliance

Signs By Benchmark, Signs West Inc. combine on architectural signage for Texas housing community.
The finished 6 x 12-ft. expanded polystyrene foam sign.

Signs By Benchmark (Watertown, SD) and Signs West Inc. (Austin, TX) are separated by a thousand miles, but the two companies recently completed their latest joint venture: an architectural sign for Townhomes at Twenty01, a housing community in Corpus Christi, TX.

Fabrication was handled by Signs By Benchmark, a wholesale supplier of foamcore exterior and interior signs as well as sign components such as bases, custom sign accents, pole covers, sign tops and 3D architectural accents. Signs West, a full-service sign company, managed design and installation, with graphic designer Deborah Camp generating the original drawing. The criteria Camp received from Townhomes at Twenty01 was straightforward: a 6 x 12-ft., double-sided foam sign that could meet a 120-mph-wind-load insurance requirement. (If that mph prerequisite appears lofty, consider that when Hurricane Harvey hit near Corpus Christi in late August, winds were as high as 130 mph.)

Camp, who typically favors a “simplistic and minimalistic” style, wanted the sign’s back panel to match the corrugated metal used on the exterior of the buildings, while also showcasing Townhomes at Twenty01’s logo. Signs By Benchmark replicated the metal’s profile from their expanded polystyrene foam using CNC hot wire cutting equipment. “Using foamcore letters offers cost savings and design flexibility, which worked very well for Townhomes at Twenty01’s lettering,” said Jacquie Devine, a marketing manager for Signs By Benchmark.

The foam letters were contour-cut so that they could be embedded within the ribbed panel, and polyurea hardcoat was applied for durability. To protect against intense Texas sunlight, a two-color automotive finish was added for UV stability. Finally, two PVC sleeves were built into the sign for mounting poles to slide directly into.

With all parties satisfied by the end result, it marked another successful project completed by the long-distance partnership. “There’s no one in the area that can do what Benchmark can do for the prices they have,” Camp said.

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