Based in Western Pennsylvania, TAKTL has created a design and manufacturing company that balances the rich industrial history of this region with the most sophisticated technology and innovation available today. With our modular manufacturing model we are ready and able to set up manufacturing facilities world wide to support project and client needs.
Philosophy Why do we do what we do? Well, primarily because we think it is interesting, exciting…and fun. We are deeply committed to design and material science and the possibilities that develop when you combine the two. At TAKTL we value design and technological innovation foremost and consistently invest in research and experimentation to achieve it. Our approach is sharply focused on assembling the most qualified team of experts in all areas of our enterprise to work collaboratively toward creating materials and products that surpass what was thought possible and meet only the highest standards. And we apply those same high standards to every facet of our company. We are active members of our community, and are committed to providing economic development opportunities and setting excellent examples in the areas of social and environmental responsibility, labor management and client relationships. Like all companies, we strive to be successful; but at TAKTL, we measure success by the quality of our company at all levels and the contributions that we are able to make to society, industry and our community.
Team The TAKTL team, now over 170 strong and growing, brings together thirty years of manufacturing experience, materials research and innovative design. Our company is made up of material scientists, mechanical and ceramic engineers, industrial, textile and communication designers, architects, artists, writers, entrepreneurs and business administrative experts, and includes many individuals who have expertise in two or more of these fields. With substantial experience in domestic and international industry and practice, our approach is interdisciplinary and collaborative. Our breadth of experience continues to grow as we push design and innovation forward.
History In 2006 TAKTL began as a research and development project at Forms + Surfaces, an international designer and manufacturer of architectural products and urban elements. Initially intrigued by the potential of UHPC in urban furniture and exterior lighting, the design studio at F+S began an exploration of UHPC technology, focusing in Europe, where much of the materials research in this field is centered. Although UHPC has been used widely there in applications requiring its superior strength and corrosion resistance – bridges, marine anchors, and narrow-profile structural elements – it is only within the last ten years that UHPC has moved into architectural applications in Europe such as rear ventilated façades and canopies.
The more we learned, the more excited we became as designers and manufacturers about the potential of UHPC for both architectural and urban design. Not only would its unique strength and surface qualities create new applications for concrete, but we began to understand that the material itself and the manufacturing model could be a compelling sustainability story. We also discovered that the expertise and technology to manufacture repeatable, affordable products did not yet exist; therefore, to continue down this path we would need to design the process. Fortunately, in late 2008 we were introduced to a research and engineering firm, based in Germany, that is a recognized leader and innovator in UHPC technology, and its principals shared our vision for UHPC in architecture and urban design. This partnership provided not only the expertise in materials, structural engineering, and facade design, but also the experience of many successful projects utilizing UHPC in a wide variety of specialized applications.
Over the next year, we developed a proprietary formulation utilizing local materials that is optimized for casting and the ceramic-like surface it exhibits, investing in a laboratory facility in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to begin to develop the mold technologies and manufacturing methods. In early 2010, based upon the success of initial products and early test results, two of the managing principals and founders of Forms + Surfaces formed a separate company, TAKTL, LLC, to focus exclusively on designing and manufacturing a portfolio of products – exterior wall elements & facades, interior wall panels, and urban furnishings & lighting – that take advantage of the unique characteristics of this material and the design latitude it affords.
Throughout 2010 we advanced the technology behind our manufacturing process and continued to grow our team of experts – engineers, architects, industrial designers, model-makers, manufacturing specialists, and materials scientists. In June 2011, with the launch of a website, a full suite of technical support documents, a growing line of architectural and urban products offered through TAKTL® and SITU®, and our first full-scale production line operational in Pittsburgh, PA – we realized the first phase of our plan. Reaffirming our commitment to research and international manufacturing, the TAKTL team is continuing to explore promising new materials and technologies, and is already at work on the next modular manufacturing facilities.