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Looking at 2040

Lots of think pieces out there asking where the world will be and what it will look like in 2040. I guess a 20-year look forward is a thing? Anyway I decided to do the same thing briefly with our industry in mind.

I think we are headed into an incredible run because glass is about to grow dramatically on the interior of a building, while still being a dominant product on the exterior. On the interior, the demand as I have noted a ton lately, is natural light. Glass is the product for this, and we are just scratching the surface here. There are tremendous amounts of interesting interior glass products that are going to become more common on the inside and as more designers and architects learn about them, the more we will see them utilized.

On the exterior, I think thanks to some excellent framing manufacturers we have a long runway ahead of great glass usage. Glass is able to go bigger than ever before, and more and more focus towards high performance is a big step. So, 2040? I see serious levels of glass on the interior, a lot less drywall and the end of fabric-clad cubicles. On the outside, all glass structures and incredible unitized systems will be leading the way giving the designer and the occupant what they demand―Check out my project of the week for a great looking example. But that’s me; curious what your thoughts are so please feel free to share.


  • A couple of years ago, the process of bringing two powerhouses of our industry began; the merger of the Glass Association of North America and the National Glass Association. This process took a ton of people to work together and develop a smooth transition to maximize the strengths of both organizations. There were a lot of questions, concerns and worries. I had an interesting view of the process as I was one of the rare people who had done significant work at both organizations, my love for GlassBuild America and BEC being the driver there. I got to see the care taken and sweat expended to get this over the finish line.

    Now we celebrate the second anniversary of the merge. The one unified voice is alive and well and the best thing for me is seeing how the strengths of each side have grown stronger inside this sole organization. Specifically, the technical side has been absolutely amazing. I know that there is a ton going on, but when I saw this post by Andrew Haring, it really hit home. The amount of unbelievable technical support and content put out here is something to see and appreciate. To all involved with this merge, congratulations―the trend continues to move positive, and your efforts to get this done were a success. And to all of the folks working on our behalf, both staff and volunteers: thank you for all you are doing to advance our industry. We need and value the resources you continue to provide. Happy second anniversary, and here’s to many, many more!
  • And while we are on the topic of good things for the industry: the news on NGA having an alliance with ASA is tremendous. This is an excellent arrangement that allows NGA member companies to have access to certain ASA benefits and resources. It will also bring ASA into some of the NGA conferences, lending additional expertise and resources to attendees of those events. Very exciting!
  • Last week was the Super Bowl, and thus the super commercials. There were some good ones, and a few groaners. My winner? MC Hammer “U Can’t Touch This” for Cheetos, barely beating out the remake of GroundHog Day for Jeep, featuring Bill Murray. I went back and forth on it, and in the end went with Hammer; obviously both of those commercials appeal to my age group given the themes and stars. On the flip side, not sure why Turkish Airlines spends $5.6 million for an ad and same with Heinz Ketchup. To me that is a serious misuse of budget.
  • Last this week, wrapping up the airport rankings with coverage of the medium sized ones. It’s funny some on this list I truly would consider “large,” but this is not my poll. (And yes, I really should do one myself right?)

10. Houston Hobby. No major issue, but also not a ton of experience here.

9. San Jose. Same as Hobby, experience-wise.

8. Oakland. Solid airport; would rather fly here versus San Francisco.

7. Salt Lake City. Nope. Scary cramped. Hard to get around, awful layout.

6. San Diego. This needs to be higher just because how chill it is, and it’s also one of my favorite cities in the world.

5. Sacramento. Amazingly, I have never flown in or out of here.

4. Nashville. Will have an experience with it in March, for BEC. It’s a decent airport, not better than San Diego, though.

3. Austin. I think this could be higher. Nice airport, and GREAT glass doors and walls. The weirdness of Austin is there too. 

2. Portland. My pal Lyle and I will argue on this, but still too high. I just don’t see it.

And at No.1: Tampa. It’s decent. But No.1? No way. Austin and San Diego should be ahead of it. 

This one has several misses; Dallas Love should be in top 10. Washington Dulles―not sure how its “medium” ―should be top 5. And Raleigh-Durham is a great one as is Northern Kentucky, and Madison, though those last two may be considered too small for these rankings.

Anyway, there ya go. Always fun to opine, and thanks to all who have weighed in on this fun debate!


Max Perilstein

Max Perilstein

Max Perilstein is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. Contact him at