Virginia Beach, Virginia
HRACRE Excellence in Design Development Awards – Best Commercial / Retail Building Under 20,000 SF – Award of Excellence
Checkered Flag Smart Center, a two-story 8,500 square foot sales and service facility, serves the region as Hampton Roads’ first Smart Car dealership. It is one of only four two-story dealerships in the country. The Smart concept is to ‘open your mind’ to challenge the status quo of car buying and accept the less-is-more mentality. The building is designed to focus on essentials and minimize the footprint, while maximizing the interiors to impact the customer’s experience. The building is clad with gray brick and black metal panels with a bright yellow enclosure to accentuate the view into the contrasting pure white showroom. The customer enters through the glowing yellow vestibule and is transported into Smart’s world of crisp finishes, modern details, and clean lines. The full-height storefront allows natural sunlight to amplify the light and airy interior. A minimalist approach to finishes allows the various colors of the Smart cars to be the accents within the space. The reception station, centrally located as a customer service hub, provides information, coffee and internet access. A second floor balcony opens into the showroom so employees can view the sales lot and floor below.