A century ago, modern architects like Mies van der Rohe championed utilitarian design in stark contrast to the historical revivals of the 19th century. In New York City, many curtain wall-clad skyscrapers exist alongside more traditional, ornamental facades.
At SUPERSTRUCTURES, as professionals in exterior restoration, we’re agnostic in our aesthetic judgments: all materials and styles have their place. In fact, the public has a growing appreciation for the eclecticism of the 21st century skyline.
Midcentury modern buildings are now 50-70 years old, and their curtain walls are no longer looking shiny and new. They require refurbishing, renewal, and, in some cases, outright replacement. The specification of curtain wall and window wall systems, either new or restored, presents both opportunities and challenges.
The challenges are to balance numerous, sometimes competing, considerations: appearance, sight lines, technical performance, simplicity of operation, ease of installation and maintenance, longevity, availability, historic authenticity, and expense.
The opportunities: new technologies permit better sound attenuation, improved energy performance, and enhanced daylight control. Coming soon: integrated photovoltaics and self-cleaning capabilities.
Our designs often involve materials and technologies not even dreamt of when the building was originally constructed.
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