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The Multifamily Production Index (MPI) for the First Quarter of 2012 showed an increase to a level not seen since 2005.
The MPI tracks the sentiment of builders and developers on the market for multifamily buildings. The index has been on a steady rise since the third quarter of 2010, as provided by the NAHB. The 1st quarter of 2012 was 51, a 2 point rise from the 49 reading in the 4th quarter of 2011. As the sentiment of the builders has risen, so have the Multifamily construction Starts, as stated by the U.S. Census Bureau, New Residential Construction.
The construction design trend is toward affordable housing that is sustainable and secure. While the multifamily building needs to provide a secure environment for its residents, light needs to fill hallways and shared areas.
A building material that can assist in meeting these expectations is Glass Block.
Carmi Bee, President of RKT&B, says in an interview with Pittsburgh Corning, “In affordable housing, there’s always this problem of security. Glass block can provide that security, but just as importantly, by using it in the stairwells, we can bring light into areas close to the street. It’s much better to use than bars on the windows, and it brings in light and it allows the building to glow and have light pour onto the street at night.”
As a proven, natural material, glass block can add beauty and inspiration to a project while playing a significant role in sustainable design. Glass block, made largely from sand and limestone, is 100 percent recyclable, inert, low maintenance, and highly durable. Yet its dynamic relationship with light provides the opportunity to create both aesthetically pleasing and energy-efficient spaces.
Glass Block can be part of an overall strategy to earn points in several categories in LEED, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.
This is an example of the advantages of Glass Block in modern building design:
- Water Resistance: Acts as solid concrete block wall.
- Energy Efficiency: Comparable to a double pane window. Eliminates drafts.
- Window Treatment: No need. Privacy is controlled by pattern selection.
- Security: Resists breakage and entry. Reduces the risk of burglary.
- Maintenance: No maintenance.
- Cost: Very comparable to a single pane window or less expensive. Check with authorized PC distributor.
Contact us at Eastern Glass Block and will assist you with your design and installation. We have over 20 years of experience designing and installing Glass Block in residential and commercial projects. We love the opportunity to share our experience.