The curtain wall is a distinct architectural solution used for buildings. This element gained great popularity due to its many advantages in terms of architecture and functionality. A curtain wall is a facade that is non-loadbearing and is recessed from the structural envelope of the building itself.
As with any other characteristic landscape element of a building, a curtain wall needs to be thought through beforehand. Namely, the type and system lay much weight on the durability, functionality, and aesthetics of a building. Different systems offer various pros and cons and affect the quality of design and building through the deployment of the curtain wall in many ways. An informed decision will surely render flexibility while dealing with installation options.
Which Curtain Wall System Suits Which Type of Building?
The most appropriate choice for a curtain wall is a curtain wall system that is optimal for the facade of a building. Based on the functional purpose, as well as aesthetic and economic considerations, you can choose from three basic types – framed, floating, and framed by panels.
1. Framed Curtain Wall
A framed curtain wall structure is the most common of all systems and can be applied for any type of building. It is also often used in conjunction with the other systems we will talk about below. Framed curtain wall refers to a light system that is equipped with a frame and glass infill. Subdivided frames separate the wall into small modules.
2. Floating Curtain Wall
Floating curtain walls are completely free to rotate, open, and close. In case of premises that can allow large amounts of light and space to enter while keeping the exterior protected, this is the best choice. These types of systems allow for changes in the outdoor space condition without altering the interior.
Factors To Consider Before Investing In Curtain Wall
1. Adding Height to the Building:
Using stick-built curtain walling systems for enhancing an existing structure may be affordable and easy to install, but it is advisable to seek the assistance of professionals in designing and implementing a good design. Unitized systems are suitable for buildings that require internal support like high-rise buildings, especially those made of reinforced concrete. Prior planning is crucial to make sure that no additional layers get in the way.
Every structural element has to be well organized and planned. When it comes to curtain walling, a quality designer will be able to create a tailored proposal that meets all structural and aesthetic requirements. Proper engineering and reference to structural patterns are essential.
2. Building Location:
The architectural decision of a building layout is a critical part of the design. It depends on the purpose of the building and the location of the project. The further the building is located from busy streets or highways; the more opportunities are there to play with architectural solutions. It is paramount to think about all possible factors that can affect the building’s aesthetics, such as nearby neighbors, zoning, wind direction, orientation, and view angle, to mention only a few.
3. Building Shape:
Even a small project can be built with high standards. The appearance of a design can be affected by the structure of the building. The farther the building is from a rectangular floor plan, the more complicated and potentially more problematic it is to install different valuable elements to it.
For commercial projects, choosing the most suitable curtain walling system is one of the first, and usually the most critical decisions that have to be taken. For residential buildings with special intensities, customized designs can be applied. It can be challenging and costly to conceive and design the perfect curtain walling system for a building, but well-thought-through ideas and planning can definitely improve building appearance, and increase the chances of a great return on investments.
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