Dover, Ohio—Dover City School District’s Crimson Tornado logo and other spirit-related designs now protect and beautify the walls of the new high school’s weight room and boys’ and girls’ locker rooms, thanks to Dover-based Marlite Inc, industry-leading maker of a wide range of Fiberglass Reinforced Plastic (FRP) panels and cutting-edge, digital print technology. School district administrators and Cincinnati-based SHP Leading Design chose Marlite as a partner for, among many reasons, the manufacturer’s ability to incorporate any design imaginable into its FRP.
Greg Triplett, Marlite’s vice president of sales and marketing, believed the company and schools could have a great partnership. A life-long area resident, Triplett reached out to Superintendent Carla Birney in 2017 with the idea.
“Marlite FRP is more than just long-lasting, high-performance wall protection; it helps bring a building to life,” says Triplett. “In the past, school design tended to overlook beautification. But everyone needs to feel good, comfortable, inspired, and energized in places where they spend a lot of time, and Marlite’s advanced technology can help school administrators achieve that as part of both new construction and renovation.”
The school’s weight and locker rooms feature artwork and encouraging quotations, including two wall murals, each about 40 feet long and 10 feet high. With a delayed start due to the COVID-19 pandemic, phase one took about a month from design to final installation with the help of volunteers from the school and community. SHP entered the completed work into an international design contest.
Superintendent Birney, who will retire on August 1, said working with Marlite was a highlight of building construction, and the whole process could not have gone better. “Marlite was responsive to what we wanted and very creative in what they designed,” she said. “Together we generated a collective excitement.”
An Ideal Choice for High-use Areas
FRP can be easily installed over drywall, ceramic tile, concrete block, and more, significantly extending the life of solid surfaces. Made to be impact resistant, scratch resistant, and fire rated to meet code, Marlite’s FRP colors are solvent free, which means no lingering fumes. It is the ideal choice for high-use areas such as Dover’s weight and locker rooms, which were completed in early May as phase one of a larger FRP project. Phase two, slated to begin in the coming months, will involve the gymnasium and the hallways leading to it.
Marlite’s BlueSkyTM advanced finishing system is over two football fields long and produces FRP in thousands of colors and unlimited digital designs. Marlite also produces Symmetrix FRP with interlocking SmartSeam technology. Each 4-foot-wide Symmetrix panel emulates the look of tile with a seamless appearance across the full length of a wall—ideal for giving new life to walls with cracked and damaged tile, a common problem in older school buildings.
Designs to Encourage Perseverance, Health, Wellbeing
Marlite’s work in the weight and locker rooms will benefit not only athletes, but also many other Dover High School students who will have the opportunity to use the facilities. In addition, the school offers lifting and fitness classes that are open to all students regardless of their affiliation with sports.
The quotations on the walls are intended to encourage perseverance, health, and well-being. “The message is to give it your all every day,” said Brooke Grafe, high school principal. “That transcends athletics and carries over into every aspect of life. It’s for all students.”
Birney hopes the artwork will help future high school students feel a sense of welcome and that many things in the building were made special just for them. She said, “Students are at the very center of what we do. With Marlite’s help, we’ve been able to promote all aspects of wellness in creative ways.”
Learn more about Dover High School’s use of Marlite FRP in the TimesReporter article.