Why We Installed Sound-Absorbing Ceilings in our Cafe’s

As of May 13th, 2019, all three Uncommon Grounds locations have the ceiling that truly enhances your “Third Place” experience. During renovations, the Albany café’s ceiling was replaced with a sound-absorbing ceiling manufactured by Celiume.  The old ceiling was a typical ceiling that had a noise reduction coefficient (NRC) of 20%.  The new Ceilume ceiling is now 85%.  The higher NRC absorbs much more back ground noise making it easier for customers to talk to each other and to also hear our store’s music.

The Noise Reduction Coefficient (NRC) is a general rating that tells you how much sound a surface (in this case a ceiling tile) will absorb. This rating is represented as either a percentage or a decimal, with 1 (or 100%) being perfect absorption and 0 (or 0%) being perfect reflection. In other words, the higher the decimal or percent, the more sound the tile will absorb.

We strive to create an atmosphere in all our cafes that lends itself to be the best “Third Place”.  Third Place is a concept which refers to the social surroundings separate from the two primary social environments of home (1st place) and work (2nd place).  Examples of “Third Places” would be environments such as churches, cafes, clubs, public libraries, or parks.  Our goal is to be the go-to “Third Place”. With the Ceilume ceilings, our customers are able to have conversations easily while clearly hearing the music. Come to Uncommon Grounds for your next business meeting, breakfast date, or family outing and experience the difference for yourself!


Uncommon Grounds Coffee and Bagels