Reduce Labour Costs, Increase Daylight

The General Contractor, Lingan Builders Ltd. Construction Ltd and architectural firm, Archibald Fraser had ten months to plan, design and build a high-tech, 10,000 square foot building expansion, with an “as soon as possible” construction start date. At the same time, they had to limit the impact on existing operations to maintain 100% production levels in the original building of a booming manufacturing company – Protocase Inc. Does this sound familiar? Like many projects faced by architects and contractors, Protocase Inc.’s expansion had all of the challenges you can imagine - tight timelines, fixed budgets and working at a 100 year-old former steel plant site.

There was minimal allowance for delays or setbacks so the project needed to come together quickly and coprotocasest-effectively. With these pressures mounting, it may not have seemed like an opportune time to pilot a new product – the SoleraWall® System by Advanced Glazings Ltd. However, the end results can’t be denied—a stunning, energy efficient building with loads of natural daylight PLUS a reduction in construction labour costs.  

SoleraWall® is a game changer in the construction industry,” says General Contractor, Terry Morris of Lingan Builders Ltd. “I’ve been in the construction industry for 24 years. It’s always been a struggle to balance timelines and budget with building an energy efficient space. It felt like a trade-off… like you could have one or the other, but rarely both. SoleraWall® changes things. The panels install easily and quickly, resulting in reduced onsite labour costs and it has up to R18 insulation value. We tackled lots of challenges on this project, however, SoleraWall® wasn’t one of them.

SoleraWall® is a self-supporting, insulated glass daylighting system. The SoleraWall panels can be stacked side by side or laid on top of each other and are installed directly on to the primary structure of the building.

SoleraWall® brought many positive benefits during in the construction process at Protocase Inc., including a shorter installation time compared to traditional curtain-wall systems. Once SoleraWall® was installed, loads of natural daylight flooded inside the expansion and reduced the need for lighting during the interior construction phases.

For this project, a total of 150-8’x3’ SoleraWall panels were installed within a six-week time frame. The speed and efficient installation of SoleraWall® became apparent on the final week when the entire west wall (150 feet, 63 panels) of the expansion was completed in just 4 days with only 3 people!