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What Is Oldcastle Glass®?

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  • Written By: D.M. Abrecht
  • Edited By: Lucy Oppenheimer
  • Last Modified Date: 01 April 2014
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    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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Oldcastle Glass® is a manufacturer of specialty glass and architectural glass applications including architectural windows, storefronts, skylights, curtain walls, and other building envelope systems. It is a division of Oldcastle®, a major North America building products supplier, which is owned by CRH plc., one of the world's largest construction products conglomerates. Oldcastle®'s headquarters are located in Santa Monica, California. CRH is headquartered in Dublin, Ireland.

In contemporary architecture, large buildings are often held up by internal support structures. The external walls or building envelope may not be load-bearing — they may play no role in supporting the weight of the structure. This makes it possible to sheath an entire building in glass. Skyscrapers covered with glass are now a regular sight in most major cities of the world. These extensive glass facades are one of Oldcastle®'s specialties.

Two common facade styles in skyscrapers are the curtain wall and the window wall. A curtain wall is a glass building facade which extends over several stories and which hangs from the side of the building while bearing none of the building's weight. A window wall is an external wall made up of floor-to-ceiling windows. Oldcastle Glass® is a major manufacturer of both curtain wall and window wall systems.

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The architectural glass products offered by Oldcastle® include:

  • Insulating glass. This product consists of two or more panes of glass with air sealed in the space between. The immobilized air prevents heat transfer.
  • Heat-treated glass which is rapidly heated and cooled during manufacturing to provide increased strength.
  • Laminated glass. This product bonds glass with one or more layers of plastic. When broken, it will hold together in one piece rather than scattering pieces of broken glass.
  • Spandrel glass. This opaque glass is used as part of the building envelope to hide construction elements.
  • Bent glass. This glass has been heated and bent into a curved shape.
  • Security, blast-mitigation, and
  • hurricane-resistant glass. These three types of glass are all treated to help protect against break-ins, bomb blasts, and severe weather.

Products by Oldcastle Glass® figure in many prominent architectural landmarks. Their window walls are used in Seattle's Union Station and the Houston Convention Center Hotel. Their curtain walls can be seen at the Colorodo Convention Center and the Four Seasons Hotel in Miami. In Las Vegas, the Bellagio Hotel & Casino, the Caesar Spa Tower, the Aladdin Hotel, Mandalay Bay, and the Paris Hotel & Casino all prominently feature Oldcastle Glass®. Other noteworthy projects include the William J. Clinton Presidential Library in Arkansas; the Hawaii Convention Center in Honolulu; the Fordham Towers in Chicago; and the Stata Center, Genzyme Center, and Mary Baker Eddy Library in Boston.

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