Four of 10 AIA Top Green Building Projects in 2022 Glazed with Vitro Low-E Glass

Vitro Architectural Glass announced that four of the 10 buildings selected by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Committee on the Environment (COTE) as the top green building projects of 2022 were glazed with Solarban solar control, low-E glasses.

The four winning projects include three renovated buildings with additions and one new build. The winning projects include:

  1. 633 S. Cooper Street; Memphis – Challenged to upgrade a 1957 shell into a high-performing enclosure, Archimania selected Solarban 90 glass in a thermally broken storefront system for its high level of solar control performance and neutral aesthetics. In a one-inch insulating glass unit (IGU), Solarban 90 glass delivers visible light transmittance (VLT) of 51% and a solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) of 0.23. Even though the window-to-wall ratio is 18%, the floorplate design manages to deliver daylight and views to 100% of the building’s work and collaboration spaces. In upcycling the mid-century building’s original steel structure, masonry and terrazzo floors, a 67% reduction in embodied carbon helped the project achieve net-zero energy and net-zero carbon performance.

    Boston Public Libray. Roxbury Branch
  2. Boston Public Library/Roxbury Branch; Roxbury, Mass. – In replacing the original 1978 translucent glass block with timber curtainwall and aluminum curtainwall systems outfitted with Solarban 72 Starphire glass, the Boston Public Library/Roxbury Branch has been reimagined as a vibrant community hub. To help deliver daylighting to all library patron areas and 91% of the regularly occupied areas, the size and spacing of the curtainwall’s mullions was analyzed and calibrated accordingly with daylight modeling. With the high-performance Solarban 72 Starphire glass, the thermally broken white oak glulam curtainwall in the reading area delivers a whole assembly VLT of 68% and a SHGC of 0.28, while the aluminum curtain wall provides a VLT of 60% and a SHGC of 0.26. To optimize shading during operating hours, the architect Utile sized the depth of the east-facing curtain wall mullions accordingly while the south-facing mullions are assisted by surrounding trees to help modulate glare. “Filled with light, this renovation shows that existing buildings that are under loved can be transformed into a public space for a community who deserves it,” says one of the AIA/COTE jurors.
  3. Meyer Memorial Trust Headquarters; Portland – Textured metal cladding combines with operable Solarban 67 glass windows and ground-floor curtainwall to create an open and equitable environment at the state’s largest private foundation. With large exposures on the west, south and east elevations, Lever Architecture needed glass with a low SHGC for the building and therefore selected Solarban 67 glass, which offers a 0.29 SHGC in a standard one-inch IGU. The curtainwall system attached to load-bearing mass plywood columns lends a beautiful aesthetic while the slender, yet tall punched windows create a simple rhythm below the saw-toothed 53kW. photovoltaic (PV) roof.
  4. Lick-Wilmerding High School; San Francisco – By preserving the existing mid-century curtainwall and adding Solarban 70 glass to new additions, this industrial arts school is providing a sunny, thermally comfortable environment for its students. In fact, the project earned a 2020 Livable Building of the Year award from the Center for the Built Environment at the University of Berkeley and scored a 94% occupant survey satisfaction rate based on air quality, acoustic quality, lighting and thermal comfort. In a one-inch IGU, Solarban 70 glass provides VLT of 64% and a SHGC of 0.27. Performance for the existing curtainwall was boosted with interior acrylic glazing. Complementing the existing curtainwall and its thin wood mullions, the new curtainwall addition on the third floor references the original modules with even thinner mullion-less silicone joints. Daylight modeling analysis of the new and existing spaces revealed that some circulation areas were not receiving enough daylight to function as collaborative spaces, so the architect EHDD added skylights and transom windows above the doors in the corridor.