Whereas the builders of the past relied primarily on wood and stone today’s most common commercial building materials are concrete, steel and glass. Until fairly recently all three of these materials were limited in what they could do, but all that’s changed. Concrete today has little resemblance to the concrete of even a decade ago, steel superstructures are reaching for the sky… and then there’s glass.
The University of Michigan’s Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning recently issued a white paper on the subject of glass as an architectural element which begins with the following statement:
In considering the benefits of glass in the field of architecture, a number of key characteristics come to mind. Foremost is the material’s transparency which allows abundant daylight, expansive views, and passive heat gain in cold climates, as well as the productivity gains and health benefits that daylight and views are believed to engender.
The evidence presented in the paper suggests that, of the big 3 building materials today you could make a convincing argument that glass is the most important. It covers the exterior of our largest buildings, allows those buildings to operate at previously unknown levels of energy efficiency and opens up the space within individual floors to allow better communication, navigation, illumination, noise protection and aesthetic enjoyment. As the paper points out:
More than any other building material, the use of glass in buildings is associated with modernity, both because it was not until close to the mid-20th century that developments in technology allowed the manufacture of large panels of glass that were structurally sound, but also because glass, in many ways, is associated with the modern ethos in architecture of lightness, airiness, transparency and variability.
Today, architectural glass as a building material is no longer limited to the exterior of skyscrapers but has forged a pathway into the very heart of commercial buildings and residences everywhere. At IMT Modular we’re on the cutting edge of this movement toward healthier, more eco-friendly interiors.
Glass Partitions: The Versatile Eco-friendly Solution
Modular glass walls not only look great they’re also a key element in any “green office” scheme. Until recently most of the light entering an office building was trapped by the spaces that lined the building’s exterior. The advent of glass partitions has opened up the opaque walls enclosing these spaces allowing sunlight to penetrate to the once dark centre of the floorplan and minimizing the need for expensive and wasteful artificial light. Glass has other desirable “green” characteristics as well, including the fact that it’s made of natural and recycled materials and is itself 100% recyclable.
Modular glass walls have other benefits too. Studies have shown that the natural light they allow into an office space is beneficial for the overall health of workers and results in fewer sick days, higher productivity, better quality of sleep and reports of improved quality of life. In addition, they’re easy to clean, resist mechanical damage and do an excellent job of both acoustic and thermal insulation.
Glass partitions are not confined to the office space however. Today you are just as likely to find them in the world’s busiest airport terminals, dividing and subdividing space in convention centres, creating temporary display areas in shopping malls and hard at work in laboratories and research facilities the world over.
To no one’s regret the dark, maze-like office of yesterday is finally fading into history where it belongs. Today’s flexible plan, naturally lit, accessible and eco-friendly office spaces are leading the way toward a healthier, more productive future for businesses large and small. The design professionals at IMT Modular Partitions can show you how to take advantage of this new world of office space. We’ve been a leader in the production and installation of glass partitions for more than a decade and are thrilled that so many members of the Toronto business community have ‘seen the light’ being shed by this exciting, cost-effective technology.
No One Does Glass Partitions Better than IMT
Our interior design philosophy is driven by the twin tenets of flexibility and versatility and every modular solution we craft for our clients is an expression of that philosophy. Let IMT Modular show you the way to a better, more productive, more sustainable future through the use of our leading edge glass partitions.