The need for safety and security of students in a school building makes the design of an educational institution a unique challenge.
The physical threats that need to be considered are extreme weather events, such as hurricanes or tornadoes. In addition there are the unforeseen catastrophes such as explosions outside the building or perpetrators with intentions to harm. So, the windows need to be safe and secure meeting hurricane-resistant and blast-resistant requirements.
While providing a secure environment for the students, the internal spaces should be optimal for learning. Natural light must fill the inside spaces occupied by the students. Sounds from the outside, especially in urban settings, should be kept to a minimum. And, building materials that are graffiti resistant need to be used. Energy efficiency must be a priority while also providing Daylighting needs and meeting LEED guidelines.
Glass Block fills all of these requirements. Glass Block can be used where there was a planned solid wall. No other building material has the quality of a solid wall without blocking light from entering inner spaces. Glass bricks provide effective protection against air pressure and flying debris. And, Glass Block is also graffiti resistant.
A Building Material for Security
There are many Glass Block products available that can be chosen for different applications. For instance, THICKSET is a glass block from Eastern Glass Block that is manufactured by Pittsburgh Corning and is ideal for use in schools. These Fire Rated Glass Block products include the Thickset 60 and the Thickset 90.
Another great product for security is LightWise Architectural Tornado and Hurricane Resistant window. This window has successfully passed the highest standards of performance for FEMA 361 “Design and Construction Guidance for Community Safe Rooms”, meet the large missile impact tests referenced in the International Building Code, and Dade County Approval Protocols. The window provides effective protection against air pressure and flying debris caused by tornado-force winds.
To learn more about creating a sustainable and secure environment for a learning institution, call us at Eastern Glass Block. We have over 20 years of experience in residential and commercial Glass Block installation services. We love to share our knowledge.