Glass Week Sessions Cover Wide Range of Topics

Today's Glass Week sessions covered a variety of topics including the design of the new Oklahoma City Federal Building Campus, green buildings and hurricane codes. A square table meeting also took place this afternoon that provided attendees an open forum to discuss some of the major business issues with which they are faced.

Today's first presentation came from Ross-Barney+Jankowski Architects and covered their involvement with the design of the new Oklahoma City Federal Building Campus. Some of the factors that were taken into consideration for the design were security and LEED. A large amount of glass was also used in several different areas, increasing the amount of daylighting and decreasing energy costs from artificial lighting. Not only was glass used in the windows, but also skylights, walls and flooring.

Valerie Block with DuPont discussed Green building design.

"Energy efficiency is critical in the design process," she said, adding that within this criteria there are numerous opportunities for the glass industry to get involved in green building design.

Discussing hurricane codes were John Bush of Oldcastle Glass, Nanette Lockwood of Solutia Inc. and Jaime Gascon, a Miami-Dade County code official. When asked about the cost efficiency of using laminated glass in new construction versus shutters, Bush explained that laminated glass was very cost effective in that it falls in a price range between the board shutters that are installed manually prior to a storm and the upper-end roll-down shutters that are installed on windows. For retrofit applications, though, laminated glass does cost more since the entire window is being replaced.

During the afternoon's square table meeting attendees joined together for lunch and to discuss issues they are faced with in business. In discussing the growing presence of China in manufacturing, the group talked about the importance of building a relationship with companies in Mexico and Latin America.

"The Chinese are everywhere," said Steve Little, keynote speaker from yesterday, who added that he would not be surprised to see China start building float plants in Mexico. He encouraged the importance of learning to speak Spanish as a way of showing our support and our interest in partnering with companies in those countries.

Other topics on the agenda included the complexities in order entry due to the increased amount of products and their level of sophistication; health care costs; the improving commercial construction market, which is offering a prime opportunity to sell more value to the marketplace; and the issue of freight shipping/transportation.

"It's a problem waiting to happen," said one attendee, who noted that while there are few shipping delays now, the shortage of quality drivers and therefore trucks, could soon led to bigger issues.

This evening Glass Week attendees will enjoy the formal banquet and special awards ceremony. The conference concludes after tomorrow morning's Glass Week and GANA planning meetings.

Be sure and read our full Glass Week coverage in the upcoming March 2005 USGlass magazine.

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