The Lobby Curtain Wall at The Avenue in Washington, D.C.

Lobby Curtain Wall at The Avenue



The lobby curtain wall at The Avenue consists of two three-story glass and cable façades and glass canopied entrances enclosing the indoor atrium of a new $214 million shopping, housing, and office complex for which Thornton Tomasetti provided structural design.

The two glass entrances provide a translucent walkway through the complex, minimizing the structure and maximizing transparency. Thin stainless steel trusses flow unobtrusively upward from the interior vestibule roof in a diamond pattern. Stainless steel ribs and gutter form a skeleton for the vestibule roof, but the structural silicone sealed roof glazing and the load bearing inner glass wall are relied upon to complete the all-glass vestibule. A glass canopy extends past the building doors at each entrance. Special stainless steel patch fittings were developed to provide structure and support while minimizing surface area and matching the fittings on the glass doors.

Thornton Tomasetti fully designed and engineered the two entrances to create integrated structural systems that increase efficiency while following the architect’s vision. Details were designed unique to the building conditions and erection of the integrated system. The façade glazing was specifically considered for deflection and stress due to its large size. The clamping system that provides lateral stability as well as supporting the dead load of the glass was designed for this truss system. A complete Erection and Pre-Stressing Procedure report was created in addition to the full set of bidding drawings and specification for the system.

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