Schermerhorn Symphony Center

Strategically placed acoustic glazing in the $120 million, 197,000-square-foot Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Nashville allows for natural lighting while maintaining a pristine acoustic environment.

“Clerestory windows let light into the auditorium. They’re the only windows connecting to the outside that go into the auditorium,” says C.B. Waldo, vice president of Alexander Metals Inc. in Nashville, the glazing contractor on the job.
Architects from David M. Schwartz/Architectural Services Inc., Washington, D.C., chose double-glazed windows for the clerestory in the concert hall, with a 2-inch-thick laminated and low-e interior lite, a 24-inch air space and a 3-inch-thick, laminated and low-e exterior lite. Viracon of Owatonna, Minn., was the glass fabricator.

Wausau Window and Wall Systems of Wausau, Wis., supplied more than 300 Epic windows with beveled muntins to provide further acoustical benefits. The windows were finished in green with nickel-silver trim that offers a historic look, Waldo says.

The double-glazed design along with the acoustic frames soundproofs the concert space, Waldo says. “The entire concert hall is a recording studio space. All the doors, windows, everything that feeds into the hall are soundproof,” he says.
The rest of the building features 1-inch, low-e insulating glass units, also from Viracon.

Earl Swensson Associates and Hastings Architecture Associates, both of Nashville worked as the architects of record on the project. Akustiks of South Norwalk, Conn., served as the acoustical designers, and American Constructors Inc. of Austin, Texas, as the general contractor. Curtain Wall Design and Consulting Inc. of Dallas was the curtain wall consultant.
Construction started in December 2003, and the concert hall officially opened in September 2006.