When talking about buildings, nothing says “high traffic” and “high performance” like a sports stadium. In recent months, two major stadium projects have been completed — in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Ann Arbor, Michigan — both featuring a broad range of Kawneer products. With both projects, improvements were focused on making the atmosphere more welcoming and spacious for the fans as well as making the buildings themselves more environmentally responsible, all in time for the season’s first game.

Featuring a variety of energy-efficient products from Kawneer, the 735,000-square-foot Consol Energy Center, home of the National Hockey League’s (NHL) Pittsburgh Penguins, is the first NHL arena to receive Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification. Designed by Kansas City, Missouri-based architecture firm Populous (formerly HOK Sport Venue Event) and Pittsburgh-based Astorino architectural firm, the Consol Energy Center incorporates a mix of unique and upscale interior and exterior features that bring pride to the team, its fans and the city of Pittsburgh.

Creating a feeling of openness throughout the facility was a key design element, bolstered by Kawneer’s 1600 Wall System®1 curtain wall which comprises the entire Downtown-facing west side of the facility. Kawneer’s Trifab® VG (VersaGlaze®) 451T framing, featuring an IsoLock® thermal break, was also utilized on the new arena to help enhance thermal performance and energy efficiency. In addition, Kawneer’s 1600 SunShade® was selected for the exterior of the facility to help reduce solar heat gain. With a 30-inch projection, the 1600 SunShade® provides shading to interiors and conserves energy. The curtain wall and several sunshades were painted Champagne Gold to match the Penguins’ team colors. Throughout the facility no detail was spared in theme and energy-conscious design, including the retail shop where racks shaped like hockey sticks were made from bamboo. Designed for heavy-traffic areas, Kawneer’s 500 Heavy Wall™ Entrances were incorporated throughout the building. The Consol Energy Center was constructed in a joint venture between construction managers PJ Dick and Hunt Construction as well as project management firm ICON, and glazed by D-M Products, Inc. and Universal Glass. The arena opened August 18, 2010 with a performance by Paul McCartney, and the first Penguins game took place on September 22.



Kansas City, Missouri


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Glazing Contractors:

D-M Products, Inc.

Bethel Park, Pennsylvania

Universal Glass

Detroit, Michigan

Kawneer Products:

1600 Wall System®1 curtain wall

1600 SunShade®

500 Heavy Wall™ Entrances

Trifab® VG (VersaGlaze®) 451T framing

The University of Michigan Wolverines, who often break NCAA records for game attendance, have recently gone through a major upgrade and renovation to their “Big House” stadium, which included several custom blue painted Kawneer products. The 400,000-square-foot project includes the addition of two 530-foot-long multi-story structures on both the east and west sides of the stadium. These additions include fan amenities, restrooms and concessions, guest suites, club seats and press facilities. To improve access and safety, two new concourses were added on both sides of the stadium. Other renovations included widening aisles and seats for comfort and safety, adding handrails and adding impaired-mobility fan seating.

To create the master plan for expansion, Kansas City, Missouri-based HNTB Architecture was hired by the university. Both Curtis Glass in Troy, Michigan and Lansing Glass Co. out of Lansing, Michigan were selected to glaze the project. Kawneer’s high-performing 1600 Wall System®1 curtain wall with punched openings and 1600 Wall System®2 curtain wall with an inverted slope were utilized throughout the stadium. In addition, Kawneer’s StadiaView single hung windows were utilized in the stadium’s suites to provide unobstructed viewing of the action on the field. To stand up to the wear and tear caused by the heavy traffic in the Big House, Kawneer’s 500 Tuffline® Entrances were installed. In addition, the stadium featured Kawneer’s Trifab® VG (Versa Glaze®) 451 framing, 260 Insulclad® Thermal Entrances, 2000T Terrace Doors and GLASSvents® for curtain wall. So that the game season was not interrupted, construction was spread over three football seasons and conducted when traffic was minimal. The project’s $226 million price tag was funded through private donations, athletic department resources and revenue generated by the new seat additions. The new capacity of the stadium will top 108,000.


HNTB Architecture

Kansas City, Missouri

Glazing Contractors:

Curtis Glass

Troy, Michigan

Lansing Glass Co.

Lansing, Michigan

Kawneer Products:

1600 Wall System®1 curtain wall

1600 Wall System®2 curtain wall

Trifab® VG (VersaGlaze®) 451 framing

500 Tuffline® Entrances

260 Insulclad® Thermal Entrances

2000T Terrace Doors

GLASSvents® for curtain wall

StadiaView single hung windows