The analysis of the architectural glass facades on historic buildings is very important to perfectly understand the structural and aesthetic aspects from a perspective of preservation and conservative restoration.
Since they do not fulfill the technical characteristics and do not possess the basic requirements for acoustic, thermal and safety insulation, the architectural glass facades of the buildings that make the history of our cities are today less safe and efficient.
Thinking of curtain walls, attention inevitably goes to the iconic glass of the architectural facades of historic buildings for industrial use which have been made by artisans in the early nineteenth century.
Their conservative recovery requires the use of innovative materials on facades, so that historic buildings maintain their splendor and acquire a high degree of energy efficiency and resistance. In this way the architectural glass facades, which have been adapted to current regulations, fully perform the function of window frames and guarantee maximum resistance over time.
The architect has the delicate task of intervening on the structure, on the aesthetics and evaluating for each element how to obtain the best results by making interventions that are both imperceptible to the eye and perfectly in harmony with the architectural work.
In fact, we can summarize the intervention on the architectural glass facades of historic buildings in the search for the perfect balance between conservation and sustainability, at the center of which are the windows.
The latter give rhythm to the facade and create harmonies among the elements. They also have a much more fundamental role for the usability of the building, because the comfort of the interiors and energy efficiency depend on them.
Just as for structural and masonry works, also for windows it is necessary to act discreetly, by choosing the best solution between replacement, repair and building restoration.
Thus the work of the architect and restorer develops in synergy with companies specialized in the window and door sector, so as to analyze every single window, glass, any blackout, shade, jealousy and railing:
The type of window, materials, color, installation and any accessories are studied so as to achieve the perfect combination of aesthetics, functionality, thermal and acoustic insulation and, where necessary, safety.
Through the survey, the architect complies with the architectural constraints of the historic buildings, by focusing attention on the windows, analyzing their materials, color, installation and any accessories.
It is clear that the windows on the facades of a historic building cannot come from mass production, but that each element originated from a manufacturing art that only craftsmanship can faithfully replicate. Added to this is the need to comply with a series of architectural constraints typical of historic buildings under the restrictions of Fine Arts.
At this point, the experience and ability of companies like Capoferri play a fundamental role. They combine the perfection of industrial technique with the uniqueness of hand-made products, together with an unmistakable Made in Italy imprint that we export all over the world.
From analysis to the design phase, from performance calculations to implementation, the installation is the climax of a long process that ends with a product that has prestigious and qualitatively high characteristics and that is worthy of the structure it belongs to.
If we go back within our minds to the large windows that characterize the facades of industrial buildings a couple of centuries ago, we must show their evolution, which Capoferri has translated into the modern Ferrofinestra. This window is very similar to those that belong to historic edifices and respond to all the architectural constraints imposed by the Superintendency.
The entirely stainless steel frame with multiple locking points, the handles designed to minimize effort during movement, the thermal break offers very high performance in an unmistakable style.
It proves that, when we talk about the profile of the architectural facades of historic buildings, we cannot ignore the customized solution and the compliance with the requirements imposed by architectural constraints. Each facade must be able to cope with the varied and numerous aesthetic and environmental needs of the building itself, which we can simplify as follows:
We take into consideration that these are all factors that can have a decisive impact on the constitution of the window or door, as in the case of extreme environmental conditions or the need for maximum resistance. Thus, the thermally broken window, targeted safety solutions, the choice of glass of various widths, thicknesses and strengths all define the lines of doors and windows made with custom profiles.
Cutting-edge technology must merge with the creation through a process based on the analysis of the characteristics and needs, while a timely creative impulse must lead to new custom designed solutions.
And if in contemporary edifices the satisfaction of the client is fundamental, when we talk about facades and architectural structures of buildings under the restrictions of Fine Arts, we cannot ignore the respect of all the architectural constraints imposed by the Superintendency. In fact, the non-compliance can translate into the halting of the works , their remaking and heavy fines.
The tailor made profile characteristics of the facades of architectural buildings. must appear to the observer always unchanged in their original beauty despite concealing technological mechanisms that make them efficient and sustainable. Sustainability certainly was not among the concerns of those who originally built the building. Yet it is today the main focus during the restoration.
Therefore, the profile characteristics of the facades, especially the glass ones, has to respect the original design. They must be transformed into qualitatively more resistant elements with a high thermal insulation value. The focus is on the decrease in consumption, the heating of indoor environments and the set of advantages not only in economic terms, but also the reduction of CO2 emissions. For this purpose, tailor made work takes on a significant value.
This is supported by the choice of recyclable and hi-tech materials such as highly performing precious metals, which expertly combine aesthetics and functionality.
However, facade works sometimes require much more. It may be necessary to use highly technological innovative materials such as carbon fiber and ballistic steel, which not only offer a high-level thermal and acoustic performance but also increased safety.
It remains essential that the intervention is discreet and effective. The tailor made profile characteristics have to comply with the indications provided by the Superintendence for all buildings under the restrictions of Fine Arts.
We are called to intervene on buildings, churches, infrastructures that belong to our history/heritage, which we have to preserve and enhance as unique assets. We have to flex the modernity of innovation to an aesthetic that recalls history.
Precisely this makes the intervention on historic buildings even more exciting. Those who, like Capoferri and other companies in the sector, have dedicated their professionalism to the production of tailor made windows must push the envelope of always renewed research and knowledge.
It is a real challenge in which we respond to the technical and creative needs of architects of the past and of the present. In this context, we have to ensure high technical performance on what has already been built and which cannot be lost, by paying maximum attention to the aesthetic factor and to everything that can make the facades resistant to time, bad weather and possible breaks.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay updated on the world of Capoferri