Case Study: Dallas Hotel Earns LEED Gold Certification

Paul Bush, PPG Industries  With a blue glass façade, fabricated from Solarban 70XL Pacifica and Solarban z50 glasses by PPG Industries, Inc., the Omni Dallas Convention Center Hotel represents more than the latest and most visible addition to the city’s skyline.

The $550 million facility is the first building in Texas to earn the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Gold certification for new construction and is the largest hotel outside Las Vegas to be awarded with this distinction.

The 1.2 million square foot hotel, now the second largest in the Omni chain, was designed to pay homage to the city’s celebrated glamour and its muscular industrial history, all while creating a towering new standard for sustainable design.

Built on a former Brownfield site, the hotel features an unconventional boomerang shape that, together with the company’s advanced solar control low-E glass, maximizes city views while mitigating the effects of solar heat gain associated with Dallas’ sunny, urban climate.

For the hotel tower, the architectural team wanted a product that could deliver a solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) of less than 0.20 to reduce energy consumption, along with high visible light transmittance (VLT) to promote daylighting and low exterior reflectance to minimize the tower’s impact on neighboring buildings and sites. The glass used in the tower combines clear, triple-silver-coated solar control low-E glass with a rich, deeply saturated blue tint. In a 1-inch insulating glass unit, the combination delivers a SHGC of 0.18 with exterior reflectance of 6 percent and a VLT of 30 percent.

The company processed all the glass internally, including heat-treating in three convection ovens, to meet rigorous standards for flatness, minimization of roller marks and panel-to-panel color consistency.

Thanks to the performance of the architectural glass and the implementation of other advanced sustainable design strategies such as utilizing the Brownfield site, reflective roofing materials, automated lighting and HVAC controls, aggressive recycling programs and the use of certified brick and timber products, the hotel achieved LEED Gold certification and has been recognized by several other industry organizations for exceptional building and design.

Ed Netzhammer, Managing Director of the hotel, said the collaboration of the design team, along with city planners, the general contractor, construction team and representatives of the Omni chain were critical, not just to achieving LEED certification, but to creating a model for sustainable building in Texas.

“The remarkable effort put forth by every team member who had a hand in keeping the project focused on sustainability led to this significant milestone,” he said. “We are thrilled with this acknowledgement and look forward to continuing to be a sustainability leader in the hospitality segment.”

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