Glass / Resource Management

Glass Innovations: LEEDing the Way

leed office glass desks cubiclesPPG glass helps building earn first LEED Platinum certification in Tennessee.

The Upper Cumberland Regional Health Facility in Cookeville, Tenn., has become the first building in Tennessee to earn LEED®-NC (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design-New Construction) certification at the Platinum level, in part because of its use of SOLARBAN® 70XL and SOLARBAN 60 solar control, low-emissivity (low-e) glasses by PPG Industries. Brian Templeton, a principal with Upland Design Group, the architect of record for the facility, said SOLARBAN 70XL glass was specified for the structure’s large, translucent daylighting panels, while SOLARBAN 60 was selected as the vision glass for the entryway, work spaces, and other surface-level applications.

Introduced at the GreenBuild International Conference and Expo in 2005, SOLARBAN 70XL glass reportedly remains the industry’s highest performing solar control, low-e glass. With visible light transmittance (VLT) of 64% and a solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) of 0.27, SOLARBAN 70XL glass delivers an unprecedented light-to-solar gain (LSG) ratio of 2.37.

SOLARBAN 60 glass also remains among the industry’s highest performers, with VLT of 70% and a SHGC of 0.38, which translates into an LSG ratio of 1.85. Both products are favored by architects for their transparent appearance and excellent solar control.

The 51,000-sq-ft building, which houses the leadership and management for the health departments of 14 Tennessee counties as well a clinic and conference center, was designed to provide a healthy, low-maintenance work environment while minimizing energy consumption and the use of potable water.

In addition to extensive use of daylighting, the facility features a geothermal heating, ventilation and air conditioning system, and an array of photovoltaic solar panels that generate 2.5% of the energy needed to sustain its operation. Together, these three strategies combine to reduce energy use by 43% compared to a similarly sized building with standard code requirements. The project also exceeds LEED requirements for stormwater management by incorporating a system of rain gardens and bioswales.

The Upper Cumberland Regional Health Facility was designed jointly by Upland Design Group, Crossville, Tenn., and Thomas Miller and Partners of Nashville.

For more information, phone (888) PPG-IDEA (774-4332) or visit

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