Mosinee, Wisconsin Stretching over part of expansive Lake Michigan, extending the Windy City over a sea of blue, is the historic Navy Pier. Iconic for its attractions and glowing Ferris wheel, Navy Pier has drawn millions of tourists since it was opened in 1916. Every inch of the piers 50 acres is clad with foodie hot spots, local shops, entertainment and recreational ventures. With 100 years of use under its belt, the centennial anniversary of one of the Midwests most-visited landmarks came with a grand redevelopment vision to make it a greener and more contemporary space for urbanites and tourists alike.
The vision of leading-edge landscape architects at James Corner Field Operations (JCFO) was brought to life in part to an innovative partnership of Unilock and Kafka Granite. One major goal for Phase 1 of Navy Piers redesign was to establish an area that was less commercialized and more focused on uniting green space and peoplethe urban arena and the environment around it. One challenge of this project was buried in trying to expand desired green spaces and improve pedestrian access while concurrently improving storm water management and using recycled materials.
Kafka Granite and Unilock responded to the call. As the nations premier manufacturer of concrete interlocking pavers, Unilock was an obvious partner when it came to creating a gorgeous surface for the improved landmark. In order to meet the rigorous specifications Navy Pier established for materials to be used, Unilock teamed with Kafka Granite to create a solution that would check all the boxes.
Kafka Granites recycled copper slag was an imperative part to Navy Piers redesign puzzle. With Kafka providing recycled crushed aggregate to Unilock, specifications were precisely met while environmental needs were surpassed. Not only was a portion of the pavers permeable, which will aid in storm water management, but their clever incorporation of recycled materials made this projects SITES Gold certification possible. In total, nearly 30% of the materials used for the entirety of Phase 1 were made from recycled contentthe pavers playing a major role in that achievement.
Kafka has an eye on the environment and has been innovating sustainability in its industry for decades. From its state-of-the-art crushing facility to its use of recycled porcelain, kiln slag, copper slag, firebrick, glass, mirror, and more, its a company that understands the importance of reduce, reuse and recycle. By using materials that would have otherwise found their way into a landfill, Kafka makes it possible for landscaping projects to achieve highly sought after certifications. Navy Piers Gold certification rendered it the first project to earn such a pristine level of eco-friendliness under SITES v2 requirements.
Kafka Granite is a family-owned company specializing in architectural and landscape aggregates based in Mosinee, WI. With a portfolio offering more than 60 colors, Kafka crushes granite, marble, quartz and recycled materials such as porcelain, slag, glass, mirror, and more to exacting specifications. To learn more about sustainable materials including recycled resources, visit www.kafkagranite.com today. A greener tomorrow is waiting.