Cumberland Farms

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Client: Cumberland Farms |
Location: Headquarters | Westborough, MA
Project Type: Convenience Store
Area Supplied: Main Retail Floor & Walls, Restroom Floors & Walls, Back of House Floors
Product: Retail & Restroom Floors – Facade Brown, Made in USA, 12″x24″, Restroom Walls – Atmosphere Warm Dawn 12″x24″, 6″x24″, Thread Mocha Mosaic 12″x12″, Back of House Floors – Nimble Speckled Taupe 8″x8″

Cumberland Farms, colloquially known as “Cumby’s,” is a chain of 600+ convenience stores.  The chain recently rolled out a new store design that featured space for hot sandwiches, pizza, a shake machine, and a state of the art “Chill Zone” (frozen drinks). Cumberland Farms sells nearly 3 million gallons of Chill Zone every year, or enough to fill 6 Olympic-sized pools!

Challenge | Finding Product that Performs

Cumberland Farms had used many different floor and wall finishes over the years including porcelain tile, VCT, LVT, and polished concrete. Yet, none of these flooring finishes provided a low maintenance, aesthetically pleasing solution for the high-traffic convenience stores.  Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) and Vinyl Composition Tile (VCT) offered cheaper upfront costs to install but wound up costing more throughout the lifecycle of the project due to wear and tear. These products were easily ripped, scratched and gouged; they wore too quickly in the northeastern climate where salt and sand were tracked through the floors in the winter.  Cumberland Farms experimented with a porcelain tile from another distributor at first, and even though the product was produced domestically they faced stock-outs on multiple occasions due to poor program management. Additionally, when experimenting with polished concrete floors, it was found to be expensive, difficult to install, and labor intensive to maintain.

Solution | Durable & Easy to Maintain

Creative Materials consulted with the Cumberland Farms design team to find the perfect porcelain floor tile that would suit their needs. Because Creative Materials works with 100+ manufacturers and many multi-unit brand clients facing similar issues, the team was able to suggest tile that would be suitable for the environment. The design team wound up selecting tile for the sales area that was made in the USA and that would be installed with a random, organic pattern to hide foot traffic during operating hours. The tile was durable with a lot of movement, so dirt and debris would be less visible, and tile offers the added benefit of being extremely easy to maintain compared to other flooring types. The design was completed with another domestically produced porcelain tile for the restroom walls, complemented with a glass mosaic blend accent along the chair rail. Because Creative Materials specializes in building custom tile supply programs for corporate multi-unit brands, Creative Materials could guarantee that stock-outs would not be an issue when trying porcelain tile this time around.

Result | Clean Convenience

Over 50+ new locations have been opened with the new tile design. The lack of visible wear and tear that the durability of tile provides, as well as the movement in the tile that was selected, has kept the locations looking clean and aesthetically pleasing. The maintenance regime is simple and requires only a mop, cleaner, and water as opposed to the polishing that was required with previously used polished concrete. There have been no stock-outs or inventory shortage as Creative Materials has continued to monitor the supply chain. Cumby’s is happy, and the Creative Material’s team is happy to have provided them with the right solution!

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