Glass Magazine Awards 2015: Redefining What's Possible

Glass Magazine Award winners push the envelope of aesthetics, efficiency and performance

Most Innovative Entrance Project

Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center
Novum Structures

Novum Structures helped to create the striking all-glass atrium and entrance canopy at Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, during a recent significant makeover of the hospital. The sleek open air atrium offers a waiting area for patients and visitors that provides an outdoor feel while offering protection from the elements.

Upon entering the facility, visitors and patients are welcomed by the glazed atrium that spans about 30 feet wide and 180 feet long, with a height of 50 feet. The entrance also features a large cantilevered glass canopy of about 20 feet wide by 70 feet long. The total surface area of glass was about 17,000 square feet.

Novum engineered and built the complete enclosure, including the prefinished steel and all glazing. The glass is point supported in order to maximize the transparency and create the outdoor feeling of the space, according to Novum officials.

AVIC Sanxin Co. fabricated the low emissivity, laminated and fritted glass for the project. The atrium walls feature clear laminated glass with an SCC-50 low-E coating and a frit—50 percent coverage in a white dot pattern. The atrium roof glass is insulating, laminated clear glass with an SSC-50 low-E coating and frit—40 percent coverage in white dot pattern. For the canopy, the glass is clear, laminated with a frit pattern—40 percent coverage white dot pattern.

Key to the success of the project was a highly innovative design-assist process, according to Novum officials. “Initial estimates during the [design and development] stage for supply and installation of this atrium came in at over $285/ square foot,” said Terry Peterson, vice president of sales for Novum. “However, the client only had a budget of $180/ square foot. Rather than attempt to value engineer the design, Novum proposed the designer assist process.”

During this phase, Novum was engaged by VOA Associates Incorporated, design architects and architect of record of the Mary Bird Perkins Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center, as a subcontractor to develop an engineered solution for the glass and steel enclosure designed by VOA. The associate architect was Bradley Blewster & Associates.

The team collaboratively created the construction documents and developed an engineered solution for the glass and steel enclosure that was in keeping with a targeted budget, according to Novum officials. “This highly innovative process was extremely successful and Novum was able to deliver the gorgeous atrium on time and for a price less than $175/square foot,” Peterson said.

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Katy Devlin is editor for Glass Magazine. E-mail Katy at