The Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe has strong ancestral ties to the lake that bears its name. It is a key reason why the tribe built its Government Center on Mille Lacs’ shores, providing beautiful views of the lake and a connection to the outdoors.
But when the Minnesota sun shines and reflects off the water, tribal officials have been forced to retreat behind pulled shades in order to work inside the building – defeating the purpose of the idyllic setting.
The Mille Lacs Band solved the problem this year by installing SageGlass® in the south-facing wall of the Government Center conference room. SageGlass is electronically tintable dynamic glass for windows, skylights and curtain walls that tints or clears as part of an automated system. By obviating the need for blinds or external shades, the occupants are able to maintain a connection to the environment they treasure.
The Center, a central location for tribal government activities, was designed to provide large sunlit spaces and a welcoming environment well-suited for people conducting government work.
Nine large SageGlass windows now form a south-facing wall overlooking the lake. When the conference room is in use and the sun is shining, SageGlass can be tinted to increase occupant comfort and control glare for presentations, videos and other activities. Even while tinted, SageGlass provides building occupants with an unobstructed view of the lake.
“The Mille Lacs Band very much values being connected to nature and to the lake,” said Travis Lund, project manager of community development for the Mille Lacs Band. “SageGlass, as our solution, enables us to control the sunlight that comes into the room while preserving the view of the lake. Government Center employees no longer have to deal with shades nor feel disconnected from the outdoors.”
SageGlass enabled the Center’s architect to incorporate more glass into the building design without the use of mechanized shades, blinds, louvers or other sun control elements. In addition to providing unobstructed views, SageGlass reduces lighting energy costs and air conditioning costs by regulating solar heat gain within the building.
SageGlass®, a product of Saint-Gobain, is advanced dynamic glass that can be electronically tinted or cleared to optimize daylight and improve the human experience in buildings. SageGlass manages the sunlight and heat that enter a building, significantly reducing energy consumption while improving people’s comfort and well-being. It can reduce a building’s cooling load by 20% and HVAC requirements up to 30%. It is a smarter, more elegant solution than conventional sun controls such as mechanical window shades, blinds and louvers. With SageGlass you can control sunlight and glare without shades or blinds while maintaining the view and connection to the outdoors. SageGlass is manufactured in Faribault, Minn., in the heart of “the Silicon Valley of the window industry,” and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Saint-Gobain of Paris, the world’s largest building materials company.
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