Project feature: skylights
Photo by Roland Halbe Fotografie © 2007
The $20 million renovation of the Akron (Ohio) Art Museum combines a late 19th century brick and limestone building with a radical glass and steel structure. Completed in June 2007, the project integrates about 21,000 square feet of the existing building with a new 65,000-square-foot addition, increasing gallery space from 8,000 square feet to more than 20,000 square feet and adding classrooms, children’s gallery, museum gift shop and cafe. The 22,000 square feet of glazing cost $1.7 million.
Designed by Coop Himmelb(l)au of Vienna, the building is divided into three main architectural elements. The Crystal is a threestory glass and steel lobby; the Gallery Box, clad in aluminum panels, functions as flexible exhibition space; and the Roof Cloud, a 327-foot long cantilevered steel armature, extends over the old and new buildings and part of the street.
Cleveland’s branch of Harmon Inc., headquartered in Eden Prairie, Minn., served as glazing contractor and aluminum fabricator.
“The project had 40 different glass surfaces, all at a different plane or degree,” says Robert Rykena, service and special projectsmanager, Harmon Inc. “Ninety percent of the glass was patterned units. One of the challenges was transitioning one surface to another surface and making sure it was water tight.”
Fabricated by Oldcastle Glass, Santa Monica, Calif., the glass consists of 11⁄4-inch-thick lowemissivity insulating laminated glass with layers of 1⁄4-inch clear heat-strengthened glass, 1⁄2-inch air space, 1⁄4-inch Guardian LE 63 clear heatstrengthened glass, 0.06-millimeter clear interlayer and 1⁄4-inch clear heat-strengthened glass.
Schüco USA L.P. of Newington, Conn., supplied a thermally broken façade wall added to a steel substructure. Made from aluminum and unplasticized polyvinyl chloride, the Schüco FW 60+ AOS system is stick-built and has a 60-millimeter profile dimension.
Welty Building Co., Fairlawn, Ohio, served as general contractor and Façade Forensics, Cincinnati, as glazing engineer and consultant.
Photos by Acurlite Structural Skylights, Berwick, Pa.
When a customer walked into Acurlite Structural Skylights, Berwick, Pa., asking the company to design, engineer and manufacture a replica of the Las Vegas Luxor Hotel for his home, employees thought the project would never come to fruition due to its complexity and cost. Two years later, construction on the house in Conklin, N.Y., is nearing completion.
Pyramid House, a four-sided structurally glazed house, rises up three stories from its 56-foot-by-56-foot-base. While not quite the 100,000-square-foot Las Vegas hotel, the house was still a challenging all-glass structure, says Tom Kozak, director of sales for Acurlite. Oldcastle Glass, Santa Monica, Calif., fabricated the 15⁄16-inch insulating, tinted glass for the project. About 5,000 square feet of glass encloses the pyramid.
“We tried to match the glass of the Luxor as closely as possible with the tint,” Kozak says. “We used spandrel glass to hide the steel structure.”
Acurlite designed a steel supporting substructure for the project minimizing the size of the rafters that constitute the skylight structure while handling the large loads of the house. The complexity of the structure demanded precision from the team, Kozak says.
“We used an impact-tested system—the best product to fit the application,” he says. The Acurlite team took 16 weeks to close the structure after the time of order, Kozak says. “Installation just took two or three weeks.”
The owner worked with Acurlite on the design and is completing the interior construction.
Photo by Indianapolis Airport Authority
Indianapolis International Airport
The Indianapolis International Airport's new 1.2 millionsquare- foot passenger terminal building features a circular 200-foot diameter skylight with 780 glass lites and 177 steel rafters. Completed in October 2007, the terminal including the parking structure cost a total of $1.1 billion, and the skylight is valued at $5.5 million.
Novum Structures LLC, Menomonee Falls, Wis., designed and installed the 31,420-square-foot skylight with an overall weight of 471,300 pounds. Each glass piece is about 9 feet by 4 feet 5 inches in size.
“The skylight is shaped like a Pringles chip,” says Neil Dunbar, project manager, Novum Structures. “We positioned a line of rafters and as you go from east to west. The height of each rafter lowers and then rises again. On the north-south line, the glass rises in the middle. With those two elliptical shapes happening, its Pringles-type shape forms, so it's not simply a flat surface.”
SanXin Glass Technology Co., China, fabricated clear laminated insulating glass with a standard low-emissivity coating and three layers: 10-millimeter heat-strengthened clear layer with gray frit pattern to provide a shading coefficient, 60-millimeter air gap for insulation, and two layers of 8-millimeter heatstrengthened glass laminated together using a clear polyvinyl butyral interlayer.
The 42 rows of rafters supporting the skylight consist of 4-inch-by-16-inch steel tubular hollow sections. “The longest rafter is 200 feet long, which is made from five separate rafters spliced together,” Dunbar says. “They are supported from ring beam plates at the ends and by stub columns that sit on top of the main building steel structure. Each row of rafters is coated with three layers of high-performance paint.”
Construction managers included the Indianapolis Airport Authority, Indianapolis, with Hunt/Smoot Midfield Builders, a joint venture of Hunt Construction Group, headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz., and Smoot Construction, Washington, D.C.