In line with our new content direction, Architizer is highlighting a different building-product and how to specify it. This week’s topic is windows. If you’re looking for the perfect windows for your next project, search for them on Architizer’s new network marketplace for building-products. Click here to see if you qualify. It’s free for architects.
By providing buildings with light and air, windows are life-giving architectural elements, and that alone is pretty incredible. Desirable as they may be, they are "disruptions" to expertly designed façades, and with all sorts of nooks, crannies and points where leakage may occur, it is utterly essential to get them right. Otherwise, you may find yourself mourning your misstep in an indoor puddle.
To save you from ever finding yourself in that damp situation, we created a series of essential tools that you may refer back to, for years to come. From investigating double to quadruple glazed windows to understanding the precision with which Foster + Partners executed the longest curved window in the world, here you have it — everything architects need to know about windows!
SANAA’s Glass Pavilion at the Toledo Museum of Art; image via a f a s i aarchzine
“New York–based architect Amy Kessler stopped by the Architizer office the other day to talk windows, and she said something that I wasn’t expecting: “Windows are disruptions.” What she meant was that architects go to great lengths to design a perfectly watertight, durable insulating façade, and the last thing, the very last thing, that you want to do to such a well-designed assembly is to poke a hole in it. But you have to! People need light and air to live, and you have to punch some holes in even your best walls and put a few windows in.” Check out the full story here.
TWA Terminal, John F. Kennedy International Airport by Eero Saarinen, New York, United States; image via LE Miami
“Windows are one of the most important components of a building, but it can be a challenge to determine which of the many different types of frame and glass to use in any given situation. Issues such as climate, safety, energy efficiency and aesthetics are all controlled by various international and local building codes, which should be reviewed before choosing your windows. Luckily, manufacturers can help you narrow down which type of frame and glass you’ll want if you explain how and where it will be used.” Check out the full story here.
“To double glaze, or to triple glaze — that is the question. Well, that’s been the question until recently, when some window manufacturers have stepped up their games and began offering quadruple-glazed window options. This multilayered window trend has begun to grow in Nordic countries where the climate is significantly colder; hence, building insulation needs to be of maximum efficiency. Think of window glazing in terms of men’s razors: the more blades, the better the shave; the more panes, the warmer the interior.” Check out the full story here.
“With more corners and bends than typical windows, recessed windows are a challenging architectural element as they are notoriously prone to leakage. Since water sits and accumulates on the sill that meets the bottom edge of the window, it is absolutely essential that recessed windows are properly detailed and installed. With that in mind, some of the following projects, such as Rodeph Sholom Lower School and MFG, harness an apt design solution that causes water to naturally run off. With window sills that slope downwards and outwards rather than resting perpendicular to the pane, the architects have tackled a pragmatic issue at the core of their designs.” Check out the full story here.
Inside sedak’s pristine manufacturing facility; GIF via sedak
“Apple’s new 2.8-million-square-foot headquarters in Cupertino, California, claims to currently hold the world record for the largest curved glass panels used on any building to date. Over 3,000 sheets of glass wrap the spaceship-like design by Foster + Partners, making it one of the most unique glazed structures on the planet. It’s no wonder a project like this would seek such high standards in terms of building-products: Apple is, after all, known for the extreme minimalism and design precision of its products.” Check out the full story here.
Transparent wood in its final form; image via CNN by the University of Maryland
“As engineers and designers are continually rethinking the aesthetics and structural methodologies of buildings, timber is often billed as the answer to creating greener cities, and right now, the world is witnessing a remarkable tipping point in time. With buildings like Acton Ostry Architects’ Brock Commons already in existence and others like PLP Architecture’s 80-story Oakwood Timber Tower proposing to shoot up across London’s skyline, timber is edging toward being accepted as a suitable structural material for very tall buildings — a reality deemed shaky not too long ago. What if windows were timber’s next architectural frontier?” Check out the full story here.
Marvin Contemporary Casement; image via Marvin Windows and Doors
“One brand that’s zeroing in on the future of window performance, not to mention beauty, is Marvin Windows and Doors. A Minnesota–based supplier, the company offers made-to-order custom designs with exclusive features and high levels of energy efficiency. They’re constantly challenging the industry standard for windows of all sizes and shapes. To better understand the latest trends in window design and what architects need to know about detailing them, Architizer spoke with Marvin’s senior product manager Kris Hanson.” Check out the full story here.
“Nearly 10 years ago, Dutch firm HofmanDujardin Architects designed a kinetic apartment window that aims to transform residents’ relationships with their cities by turning into a balcony in just 60 seconds. The Bloomframe® window, dreamt up in 2008 and developed by renowned French engineering firm Kawneer, is now a fully marketable product set to animate tall structures in major metropolitan areas across the globe. After years of testing, the three-dimensional moving window is making its debut in HofmanDujardin’s latest residential project in Amsterdam, a 10-unit complex in the center of the city called CPO De Hallen Noord. The acclaimed product was installed during construction this summer.” Check out the full story here.
Looking for the ideal windows for your next project? Search for them on Source, Architizer’s new community marketplace for building-products. Click here to see if you qualify. It’s free for architects.