Can you recognize a metal building from the outside?

A metal building by Precision Builders

You can’t judge a book by its cover. Or a building.

Not these days.

What looks like brick on the outside could actually be a metal building. What looks like stucco could also be metal. What looks like wood could be metal. What looks like anything but metal could be…you see where we’re going with this: metal.

Metal is no longer easily detectible. Its gotten sneakier visually. In fact, its disappeared. And a great example of that is the Madison Square retail center in Norman, Oklahoma.

The 20,000 square-foot structure finished in 2010, with an additional 80,000 square-feet expansion currently under construction with a completion date set for Fall 2014. It isn’t a warehouse or an industrial complex; it isn’t storage space or a personal garage. It’s a stunning retail space off 24th Ave. NW that, just before dusk, settles into the landscape with a relaxed air as if its been there for ages.

That was the hope behind the appearance. It’s old world style meets new world technology, says Tim Grissom, co-owner of Precision Builders, who built the complex and is currently handling the expansion.

“We wanted an old, small town downtown look where you have multiple facades of buildings that are done in different ways with different materials,” says Grissom. “That makes each space unique.”

The veneer is a variation of stone, split-faced rock, and brick of varying sizes.

“I don’t think there’s anything in the way of veneer that we couldn’t use if we wanted to use it,” says Grissom.

The varying appearance gives the building, as well as the tenants, the opportunity to streamline their visual persona, such as BA Fitness, a private personal training business, with the lighter brick and large block lettering, or Old Republic Title, a title company, with their more classic façade and logo.

The appearance of a metal building never looked less like metal. And that fact has retail businesses of all kinds keeping an eye out.

“As soon as people started seeing that building go up, they wanted in there. Before we even finished construction the first tenant had moved in,” says Grissom. “It doesn’t look like a metal building and that allows us to tailor the exterior veneer to the clients needs.”

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Founded in 1927, Star Building Systems has seen and done it all, from supplying tool sheds for oil derrick drilling sites in the early oil boom days to hangar buildings during World War II. We set the industry standard for innovation and technology. Most importantly, we have the best builders in the business.


  • Avatar
    Reply July 20, 2015

    Drew Harrison

    It is really cool that we can hide metal buildings now. Some people think they look ugly, but I really like the industrial look! I’ll have to take a look at the next brick building I go into to see what it’s really made of.

    • Star Building Systems
      Reply July 20, 2015

      Star Building Systems

      You would be surprised! We are definitely fans of both looks.

  • Avatar
    Reply January 8, 2016

    Alyssa Carpenter

    This is shopping center where I get my nails done.
    I love knowing that my coworker’s work is being presented in our Community.

    • Star Building Systems
      Reply January 11, 2016

      Star Building Systems

      Agreed! Thanks for the comment Alyssa.

  • Avatar
    Reply October 24, 2016


    The variety of potential applications for metal these days is simply astounding. You can build a metal building for just about any purpose and the customizations are endless. Thanks for sharing!

  • Avatar
    Reply March 16, 2017


    above content is good……

  • Avatar
    Reply June 5, 2017


    I can’t believe they can hide a metal building like that… wow!

  • Avatar
    Reply August 30, 2018

    edward reed

    Very good article. Thank you. we are roofing contractors in chennai.

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