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Architectural Glass Projects Around the World

Glass has always fascinated architects and designers as a medium for construction. Contemporary designers have pushed avant-garde to the extremes by using glass in ways that have never been imagined before. There are many examples around the world that exhibit the use of architectural glass in impressive commercial and residential projects.

National Grande Theater of China
In Beijing, China, this easily recognizable dome was designed by Paul Andreu and completed in 2007. Glass panes are combined with titanium to produce extra-strong glass for the large dome shape that can withstand weathering. The final prnduct of this massive dome has stirred controversy in China with the ultra-modern design contrasting against the traditional Chinese architecture of the nearby Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square.

Burj Tower
Completed in 2009, Burj Khalifa is located in downtown Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Following its inauguration to the public in 2010, Burj Tower officially became the world's tallest building.


Chicago office of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) was responsible for design with Adrian Smith FAIA, RIBA acting as consulting design Partner. Burj Tower is covered with 120,000 square meters of architectural glass. The glass withstands extreme desert conditions, from changing temperatures, to heavy winds, and weathering from sand.

Glass House in Tokyo
The NA House in Tokyo, Japan, pushes social boundaries with its ostentatious design. The Sou Fujimoto architects are credited for creating this entirely transparent home, which also puts a question mark on privacy. (Certainly what is comfortable for some may not be so for others!) The glass is supported on a thin steel frame, which helps give it an ethereal quality.

Glass Concept House by Santambrogiomilao Group
Unlike the Tokyo house, this glass concept house is built entirely of special 'extra-clear' architectural glass. Projects such as this tend to push designs to the most extreme limits for the application of a given material. The Italian Santambrogiomilao group also has a slightly more practical line of glass furniture.

Skydeck Chicago
The Skydeck on Chicago's Willis Tower offers an extraordinary experience with four specially constructed glass balconies jutting out of the skyscraper. In order to support the weight of visitors standing on the balconies, the design required the strongest and most reinforced panels of architectural glass. The glass panes weigh about 1,500 pounds, and the glass balconies are supported 1,353 feet in the air.

What are your favorite buildings with impressive architectural glass facades? Let us know if we missed any of your personal favorites.


Article Source: Rose S Carter

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