What's Wrong With This Picture?


It is certainly not the design; crisp, clean and modern, Rudy Wallman is a talented architect. It might be the deceptive rendering, which shows no roof thickness or handrail stanchions, even Rudy can't do that. It might be that almost every modern condominium building these days is clad in floor to ceiling glass with an R value for the wall of about 4. A wall in Ontario is supposed to have an R value of 20, but there is no restriction on the amount of glass, so the actual R value is far lower. In the winter, that balcony is a radiator fin, radiating the heat from the apartment out into the atmosphere. There essentially is no wall, just window and fin.

Developers don't need to care about this; once the building is sold it is the owners' problem. Owners don't much care now; they look at the estimated operating expenses when they buy the unit and don't think about the price of gas or electricity five or ten years down the road, it is now still a small proportion of their monthly expenses. Architects should care, but the glass look is all the rage right now and Rudy's firm is really good at it.

But in ten years the owners will be selling the nine thousand dollar Obelisk chairs shown on the Rooftop Garden to buy insulated drapes for those windows. ::Lumiere


Conflict note: This writer worked with Rudy Wallman's firm on a project in Toronto.

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