University of Colorado (USA)
University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder) leaders sought to build an open and welcoming new facility for students and staff to dine, gather and collaborate. Based on actual student survey input, the new facility would have to showcase the stunning views of campus and the Rocky Mountains beyond, including the famous Boulder Flatirons. Energy-efficiency and sustainable building practices were also high on the list of student-driven requirements.
Showcasing the outdoor views would require abundant amounts of glass to be incorporated into the facility design, which presented a challenge for project architects. They had to find a way to control the glare and sunlight infiltration that could compromise indoor comfort and increase energy consumption due to solar heat gain.
CU Boulder and KSQ Architects ultimately chose to incorporate electronically tintable SageGlass® into the new Village Center Dining and Community Commons.
SageGlass automatically tints and clears based on sun intensity to maximize natural light, delivering unobstructed outdoor views at all hours while preventing glare and overheating indoors—with no shades or blinds required. The dynamic glass helps to create a comfortable, collaborative environment for students to dine, study, relax and work together on projects.
The state-of-the-art building also incorporates a host of advanced sustainability features, including sensor-detecting HVAC systems to optimize performance and native plants that reduce irrigation requirements. A bio-digester also converts food waste to be safely added to the wastewater supply.
With the new Village Center Dining and Community Commons, CU Boulder has successfully developed a comfortable space that balances an enhanced campus experience with environmental responsibility — while keeping the Boulder Flatirons in full view during daylight hours.
“By incorporating sustainable, innovative building materials like SageGlass, students will be able to dine, study and relax in an environment free from heat gain and glare,” said Tom Goodhew, Assistant Director of Planning and Design at CU Boulder. “Our students and staff were our first priority when it came time to build this beautiful new facility. We have successfully created a space that will meet their needs for years to come.”
By incorporating sustainable, innovative building materials like SageGlass, students will be able to dine, study and relax in an environment free from heat gain and glare.”
Tom Goodhew, Assistant Director of Planning and Design at CU Boulder University of Colorado, Boulder