Project DescriptionBendheim Wall Systems’ Lamberts channel glass graces the recently renovated West Court of the National Academy of Sciences’ headquarters, located on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. The walls of specialty channel glass contribute to the sustainable preservation mission of this comprehensive renovation project that integrates modern systems, materials, and infrastructure within the historic fabric of the building.
The architects’ work received the State Historic Preservation Officer’s Award at the 2013 District of Columbia Awards for Excellence in Historic Preservation and the Award of Excellence in Historic Architecture from the Northern Virginia Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.
“Each phase of the National Academy of Sciences headquarters—the original 1924 structure, the mid-century modern additions, and the new modernization and infill—is singularly of its time in terms of design and craftsmanship,” explains Larry Barr, Senior Principal at Quinn Evans Architects, the architectural firm in charge of the project. “The addition of channel glass is in keeping with that objective. It is a distinctive, high-quality material that uses recycled glass and reflects sophisticated production technology.”
Three courtyards were enclosed with skylights to create new pre-function, display, dining, and meeting spaces. As a design solution, Bendheim Wall Systems provided double-glazed Lamberts Rough Cast glass, with its 60% recycled content, moderate translucency and superior light scattering properties. The channel glass installation incorporates the company’s SF60 frame system in 10 vertical openings. The glass features Low-e coating and a 100% recycled thermal insulation interlayer providing optimal energy performance for the building.
“The channel glass exhibits a timeless, expert level of craftsmanship that complements the detailing throughout this beautiful historic building,” adds Mr. Barr. “As a practical matter, the opaque quality of the channel glass was particularly useful in the interior courtyards that we transitioned into meeting areas. The glass crowns the spaces and brings in daylight, but screens the rooftop mechanical equipment that would otherwise be visible.”
Lamberts channel glass is produced with up to 60% recycled content carefully selected from the municipal waste stream. Manufactured in Europe’s only clean-burning, oxygen-fueled cast glass plant, it is also the only factory-produced tempered channel glass certified by the Safety Glazing Certification Council (SGCC) and available with a 100% heat soak testing.