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than traditionally used.”
Becks wonders if it’s been the “Apple
effect” that’s been driving architecture
toward larger and larger sizes of glass.
“Clearly, the retail concepts starting
with the Apple store on 5th Avenue and
then other various retail stores across
the globe gave architects free rein to
dream of transparency as the largest
driving factor,” he says, adding that he
hasn’t really seen the door industry
evolve as quickly as other aspects of
the storefront façade.
“I often ﬁght outdated technology
in frames and hardware. Perhaps this
is restrained by code compliance,” he
says. “However, architects clearly feel
restrained and where possible have
begun to import European opening
systems at great expense and difﬁculty.”
Also speaking of the increasingly
larger sizes of glass, Richardson says
designers are trying to push the limits
The CRL-U.S. Aluminum Entice ultra-narrow thermal entrance system was of storefront capabilities structurally.
designed to combine all-glass aesthetics with full-frame thermal performance.
“Due to budget constraints, they use
storefront in lieu of curtainwall,but they
than taking advantage of various area components of the storefront (and want larger glass and taller storefront
weighting calculation methods. These curtainwall) framing systems need frames. Certainly manufacturers’ 6- or
doors perform well, but are in most to support the additional weight and 6 ½-inch storefront systems help in that
cases more than 1 ¾-inch thick, which potential movement of the glass,” says regard.”
creates hardware compatibility prob- Mary Avery,vice president of marketing
Ivan Zuniga, architectural sales
lems along with an inability to upgrade with Tubelite Inc. in Walker, Mich.“This manager with YKK AP, adds that in
existing entrances affected by code includes choosing appropriate proﬁles many commercial buildings, lobbies
changes,” he says.
or systems to meet the requirements, and entrances are now being designed
Wooten adds that many states now such as heavier wall thickness, deeper with taller spans “and we’re seeing the
require NFRC label certificates for profiles, steel reinforcing, and using use of storefront throughout the build-
the fenestration, so it’s important to curtainwall framing members for store- ing, in punched openings, etc.”
ﬁnd out early in the bidding process front applications when appropriate.”
whether this is a requirement.
plans meets or exceeds the energy
Carespodi agrees that they are deﬁ-
nitely seeing larger pieces of glass and
Make sure what’s speciﬁed on the Bigger, Bigger and Bigger taller storefronts. “And much of that is
Paul Becks, executive vice president of from the perspective that the storefront
performance requirements. Get your National Enclosure Co.inYpsilanti,Mich., cost is less than a curtainwall product.
architectural metals supplier involved says it seems as if everyone is getting in Once you’re at the12-foot mark,you start
early in the process, not only for a quo- on the bigger-is-better bandwagon.
tation but for creating NFRC thermal
“For many years the plate glass
to see the trend toward curtainwall.”
Carespodi has also started to see ar-
performance bid reports in order to storefronts with giant lites of mono- chitectural requirements for the use of
verify the project’s fenestration meets lithic glass were exclusive to the fa- storefront in openings higher than the
the code requirements,” he says.
cades on Fifth Avenue in New York or ﬁrst ﬂoor of a building. The success of
Another trend that’s also affecting the Miracle Mile in Chicago, driven by moving these materials higher up the
storefronts and entrances is the de- a mindset that impact was far more building, he adds, depends on proper
mand for larger and larger openings important than cost and energy efﬁ- installation.“That’s critical because de-
and spans of glass to ﬁll them.
ciency,” says Becks.“A modern trend is sign pressures,loading and wind speed
As building owners, occupants and clearly developing where architects are all increase as we climb the building.”
architects desire larger openings and doing their best to achieve visual im-
larger spans of glass, the design and pact by using dramatically larger glass
continued on page 62
USGlass, Metal & Glazing | September 2017