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Central Painting

Barrie, ON

Canadian Graffiti

This project took place on a vintage building in a high-traffic part of town

Organic Garage, located in Toronto, is a 12,000-square-foot grocery store with a creative graffiti artbased design on the interior. Central Painting was employed to paint the complete interior and exterior of the building. The team didn’t paint the graffiti (and it must have been tempting!) but was able to successfully maintain the unique graffiti designs on the interior and match existing finishes. “The ongoing challenge was working in a heritage building and maintaining the integrity and look while putting a modern touch to it,” said project manager Sean Hamill. “Also, working in a busy downtown area requires a lot of logistical planning and strategy, which helps keep things interesting.”

One reason this wins a TOP JOB award is because of how the company worked through complications. First was selecting the appropriate sealer for the old brick, with a goal of maintaining the look of the original building yet having it functional and clean in a busy grocery store.

Due to permit setbacks, the building’s exterior galvanized steel canopy was installed in late fall, which brought the weather in as a big player – it was difficult finding a product that would cooperate. “The two don’t work well together, as most of the paint designed for galvanized steel can’t be applied in cold temperatures,” said Hamill. “We had a special cold-weather primer made up, but it still wasn’t bonding the way we wanted it to, so we delayed the canopy painting until the spring.”

When spring arrived, as it does occasionally in Toronto, noise bylaws prevented them from working at night. They couldn’t spray during the day and they weren’t allowed to block the sidewalk, so they did what any self-respecting paint company would do – got up early. “We worked on sensitive areas between 7 and 9 a.m. (less foot traffic) and moved around using ladders and brush and roll techniques,” said Hamill.

Once they could finally paint, they had to be mindful of the substrate. The interior construction was made up of a mix of new and old materials, and this marriage of young and old couldn’t be jarring for the shoppers. “We had to work carefully to ensure that the preparation and painting of the new materials didn’t affect the appearance of the existing building,” he said.

Exterior store logo.
The crew provided protection for the “graffiti.”

Key Products

  • Monteith - ARM391
  • Dulux Ultra
  • Dulux Pit-Tech Plus
  • Dulux Perma-Crete 100% Acrylic Masonry Sealer