Front  
Developments in  
Storefronts and Entrances  
Kby Eelleen RpogeGrslaziers Busy  
Center  
home’s front door is one of its creased by 4.9 percent last year, driven W.H. Stovall & Co. Inc. in Ashland, Va.,  
most important features. The by storefront applications and curtain- says he’s seen an increasing focus on  
same could be said for the wall products. The report noted that security hardware on entrance doors  
A
doors in most any commercial build- storefront installations, however, did for all of the educational and hospital  
ing. Attractive, well-designed and not see a dramatic increase from 2013 projects his company has been doing.  
well-constructed entrances can help to 2015. As the Dodge report explains, This brings the need for electronic  
create open and inviting spaces that while store construction showed mod- hardware.  
people like to visit, whether in a shop- erate growth between 2011 and 2013,  
“Door hardware has gotten more and  
more sophisticated [as everything is  
Today, the market for many compa- going] electronic because of the need  
ping center or office building. And it’s this stalled from 2014 to 2015.  
more than just the doors; these areas  
are being designed with large spans nies is strong, and that’s making con- for security, and the need for remote  
of glass, making the use of storefront tract glaziers and suppliers happy.  
monitoring of each door opening,”  
he says. “[Installation] has become a  
team effort in both pre-planning and  
Brad Thurman, director of sales execution. Typically what happens is  
products increasingly common in ap-  
plications other than stores and shop- Where’s the Work?  
ping centers.  
According to the AAMA 2015/2016 and marketing - Midwest and East when we supply the aluminum doors,  
Study of the U.S. Market for Windows, Coast regions for CRL-U.S.Aluminum, we are also buying the entire package,  
Doors and Skylights, the 2015 market says CRL is “currently tracking more including all of the door hardware  
for non-residential entry doors in the than 450 projects that are bidding in components from the [door] manufac-  
U.S. continued to experience growth, the next month. All of them contain turer. They send us the whole package  
up 5 percent over 2014 and up 16 per- storefront and entrance doors, which of hardware, which includes all of the  
cent since 2013.Storefront applications, is higher than average,” he explains. electrical hardware such as exit devices  
along with site-fabricated commercial “Education projects are dominant, fol- with electric operation features, elec-  
windows, combined to account for 54 lowed by retail, office, government and tric strikes,door position switches,etc.”  
percent of the non-residential market. medical facilities.”  
The 2016 Dodge Construction Out-  
Josh Wignall, product manager for ities of the contract glazier, however.  
look predicts that both commercial EFCO Corp., agrees that the storefront  
“For instance, the power supply to  
Not everything is within the capabil-  
office buildings and stores will see and entrance market is strong. He says operate the electrical hardware is also  
increases compared to 2015 figures, his company has seen steady year-over- in our door package and shipped to  
which showed them in the red. While year growth in all regions, and educa- us, but we simply give it to the elec-  
several large retailers continue to close tional projects are the busiest segment. trician because this item is under his  
stores,the forecast points out that large,  
“The education sector continues to domain for the installation and oper-  
mixed-use projects are providing sup- be the strongest market for storefront ation,” says Sprinkle.  
port for retail construction. Commer- and entrances,” says Wignall. “School  
He continues, “We get boxes and  
cial projects such as government office districts have seen the need to build crates with everything packaged to-  
buildings as well as corporate head- new facilities as well as update old gether, and then we have to coordinate  
quarters have been growing, and that buildings; storefront/entrance prod- directly with the general contractor,  
means more glass.  
According to AAMA’s recent study, their design needs.”  
the non-residential glazing industry in-  
Randy Sprinkle, vice president with  
ucts are a perfect application to meet the electrician and even with the own-  
continued on page 92  
90  
USGlass, Metal & Glazing | October 2016  
www.usglassmag.com  
Top Projects  
for Storefronts  
and Entrances  
From 2013 to 2015 a number  
of storefront applications saw  
increased use in terms of millions  
of square feet (vision area). These  
applications are ones some industry  
sources say they see most often.  
Office  
Retail projects are one of the most common types of storefront installations, but the  
products can be used in a range of applications that call for large-sized openings.  
46%  
Nearing the End?  
While business is currently good for many companies, some may wonder how  
long it will continue. ABC chief economist Anirban Basu explained in the group’s  
most recent Construction Backlog Indicator report, “contractors are no longer  
becoming busier, rather, the level of activity has stabilized at a reasonably high  
level. Most contractors continue to express satisfaction regarding the amount  
of work they have under contract ...”  
He added, “There are indications that certain commercial real estate seg-  
ments are nearing the end of their development cycle. Developers, bankers and  
regulators have become generally more concerned by the possibility of over-  
building in hotel, office and retail markets. Many developers indicate that the  
current cycle is much closer to its end than to its beginning. The implication is  
that for the first time in years, backlog may be poised to decline after recovering  
massively since early 2010.”  
Education  
7%  
Retail  
5%  
Total Non-Residential Vision Area, Millions of Square Feet  
New Building/  
Percent of  
Medical facilities  
Construction  
Major  
Replacement  
Total  
Total  
Additions  
-10%  
%
change between 2013/2015  
Curtainwall  
Storefront  
13%  
13%  
5%  
5%  
12%  
11%  
2.2%  
0.7%  
Government  
Site-fabricated  
windows  
1
3%  
0%  
5%  
11%  
1.5%  
-33%  
Shop-fabricated  
windows  
1
3%  
5%  
-4.5%  
Total  
13%  
4%  
10%  
No Change  
Source: 2015/2016 Study of the U.S. Market  
for Windows, Doors and Skylights. Published  
by AAMA and Ducker Worldwide.  
Source: 2015/2016 Study of the U.S. Market for Windows, Doors and Skylights. Published by AAMA  
and Ducker Worldwide.  
www.usglassmag.com  
October 2016 | USGlass, Metal & Glazing  
91  
Fcornotinnuetd &fromCpaegne 9t1er  
As energy codes become more stringent, some companies  
are designing storefront systems to include dual thermal  
breaks, such as the CRL ArcticFront Series 45X Dual  
Thermally Broken Storefront.  
er’s security subcontractor to make stringent energy codes as they propa- minum systems. This requires greater  
sure that all electrical door hardware gate the local building codes around the coordination between the contractors  
is installed properly, and to make the country,”he says.“In order to meet these and the manufacturers.”  
building secure and safe for the owner. requirements, storefronts, curtainwalls,  
Another challenge for some is helping  
This requires quite a few meetings; it’s window walls and entrance doors have customers and architects know when  
a required team effort by all parties in- introduced dual thermal breaks.”  
volved. Sometimes it’s a fun challenge.” Godfrey says he’s been seeing more  
and where to use storefront products.  
“Water and structural performance  
Don Godfrey with B & D Glass Inc. in interest in larger and larger sizes of limit the size and application of store-  
West Jordan, Utah, describes the store- glass. This, he adds, can create some front products,” says Wignall. “De-  
front and entrance market in these terms: challenges.  
Busy as heck. It’s good here right now.  
“How we have to set the glass [can curtainwall is always critical to ensure  
Most glazing companies are at or over ca- be more difficult],” he says, pointing proper performance.”  
termining when to use storefront vs.  
pacity,” he says, adding that the majority out that larger sizes require more man-  
He adds, “Understanding how a  
storefront system manages water and  
Architectural details can also be a windloads is a first step for architects  
of the work has been on office buildings power as well as more equipment.  
as well as some retail centers.  
Business is also good in the Phoe- challenge. Godfrey says as architects when designing projects. There are  
nix area, where Dennis Hart of Tempe, get busier, the drawings sometimes some good water performance calcu-  
Ariz.-based Suntech Glass says most lack certain details, and “[architects] lators provided by manufacturers that  
everyone in the area is busy.  
may want the smaller curtainwall price, can quickly help determine if the store-  
“For the most part we’re still recov- compared to the larger storefront price, front elevation will work.”  
ering from the downturn, but it’s a lot to keep budgets down. So we usually  
better than it was. It’s significantly bet- have to go back and tell them they need New Opportunities  
ter, and I think everyone is fairly busy,” the storefront because of the large lites  
he says. “There’s a lot of competition they want.”  
Some companies are also staying busy,  
finding work in unique applications.  
in our market, and for everyone to be  
busy that’s a good indication [things mance can bring other challenges.  
are improving].”  
The drive toward energy perfor- Hart says in addition to usual projects  
such as car dealerships and healthcare  
“The challenges we experience are re- facilities,he’s seen an interest in another  
lated to … more stringent energy codes area that’s not been as common.  
“People are buying big, older build-  
Trends and Challenges  
and the desire to use larger insulating  
Architectural design trends are also glass units,” says Thurman.“The larger ings in good locations and rehabbing  
making their way into storefront jobs. insulating units increase the amount of them—ripping off the facade and  
For Thurman, the trend his company weight that is transferred to the alumi- modernizing the entrance,” he says.  
is tracking isn’t necessarily related to num systems. The introduction of mul- “There’s also a lot of new construction  
aesthetics, but rather performance.  
tiple thermal breaks slightly reduces the  
“Whatwefaceistheadaptationof more load that can be transferred to the alu-  
continued on page 94  
92  
USGlass, Metal & Glazing | October 2016  
www.usglassmag.com  
Fcornotinnuetd &fromCpaegne 9t2er  
from big companies,insurance compa- workers. The use of products such as  
“Architects and their consultants are  
nies, for example.  
unitized systems, he says, offers a way extremely knowledgeable people. Their  
I’d say the one area lacking a little is for contract glaziers to respond to the ability to transfer owners’abstract ideas  
the middle-sized companies building labor issues they often face, because into something tangible is extraor-  
themselves a new location. We don’t fabrication is in the shop and then it’s dinary, which results in some of the  
see that, and we don’t see a lot of small just a matter of installing in the f eld.  
best-looking buildings,” says Thurman.  
developers,” he adds.  
“The biggest challenge is always man- “My desire would be greater coordi-  
There is also an increasing use of unit- power and getting help,” he says.“Other nation between the architects and the  
ized systems. Hart explains that with than that … every job has different chal- manufacturers of the storefronts, cur-  
these products, the fabrication takes lenges. The only one that’s consistent is tainwalls, window walls and entrance  
place in the shop rather than in the f eld. manpower and also just the nature of doors. This would eliminate costly de-  
companies developing systems to en- have busy periods and slow periods.”  
We’re seeing a lot of the aluminum the construction because it’s cyclical.You lays and unplanned engineering fees,  
and help the owners occupy the spaces  
able that,and I think we’ll see more and  
The construction industry, like so in a more timely fashion.” n  
more,”he says.“This used to be more of many others, continues to evolve. As  
a specialized system. Now all the com- new products are developed, ar-  
panies are going that route.”  
chitectural designs and details  
The use of structural glazing tapes, will also change, often becoming  
which he says are easier and cleaner to increasingly complex. The more  
use compared to silicone,is also growing. education and information the  
Developments such as these, Hart industry can provide the architec-  
explains, are beneficial given the tural community, the more suc-  
near-constant challenge of finding cessful projects will be.  
E l l e n R o g e r s is the  
editor of USGlass magazine.  
Follow her on Twitter @  
USGlass and like USGlass on  
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