“ The Big Ass Fan allowed us to move a large amount of air at minimal cost. The exterior of the cupola is as equally awe-inspiring as the interior, framing the fan as a centerpiece. Eddie Rivers, Williams & Associates
Located only an eighth of a mile from the beach, Fire Station No. 7 of Gulfport, Mississippi, didn’t stand a chance against Hurricane Katrina. When it came time to rebuild, architecture firm Williams & Associates was excited to have the opportunity to redesign the space with the local community and energy efficiency in mind. “We wanted to blend into the area, so it was something you could look at and think that it had been there all along,” said Mike Beyerstedt, fire chief.
Integrated into the building’s coastal-inspired design is a cupola that doubles as a design and ventilation feature. A 10-ft (3-m) Big Ass Fan® inside the cupola aids ventilation and improves comfort. Opening the louvers and turning on the fan replaces stagnant air and exhaust fumes with fresh outside air. It also provides up to 10°F (5.6°C) of perceived cooling during hot summer months. “Just that little bit of breeze makes it feel a lot cooler. Having that air move across you makes working in the garage tolerable,” said Beyerstedt.