GreatGlazing: RIT Golisano Institute of Sustainability

No. 21 Ajay Glass

The basics: The 84,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art Golisano Institute of Sustainability at RIT in Rochester, N.Y., relies on glass and glazing to maximize building energy performance. According to RIT, the building features extensive glazing to reduce its dependence on artificial light, and a sunshade system of stationary louvers on the south side of the building to decrease solar heat gain from direct sunlight during the summer months. The project earned Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program.

The players: Architect, SWBR Architects; general contractor, LeChase Construction; curtain-wall consultant, Wheaton-Sprague Engineers; curtain-wall supplier, EFCO, a Pella Co.; nanogel glass supplier, Advanced Glazings Ltd.; glass fabricators, Trulite Glass & Aluminum Solutions, Serious Energy, Rochester Insulated Glass; sunshade supplier, Colt Industries;
glazing contractor (including design assist/furnish and install), Ajay Glass.

The glass and systems: The project features 40,000 square feet of unitized curtain wall and sunshades. According to RIT, the project features several varieties of glass, including: opaque spandrel panels; Solera, translucent panels with nanogel filling; and SeriousGlass, transparent, high-efficiency heat-mirror glass. Additionally, the windows in offices and conference rooms feature a coating that conducts electricity, so the glass can be heated to room temperature to eliminate drafts when the room is occupied, according to RIT.