Keep Your Space Cool This Summer with Automated Shades

Without question, New England summers can be as brutal as New England winters (and we won’t even get into the summer months in Florida). Finding a solution to keep you cool that is more cost effective than simply cranking up the air conditioning is easier than you think: look no further than upgrading to automated shades.

As a vital piece of a climate control system, automated shades can be a great way to help cool down your space–residential or commercial–while also providing a stylish upgrade.

In a residential space, cellular or honeycomb shades are ideal to help keep your room cool. They are constructed from two pieces of fabric to create cell-like shapes (hence the “honeycomb” name). This structure traps air in the pockets, creating insulation in the room that works for both hot and cold climates. Some manufacturers have even created “honeycomb-within-honeycomb” shades for maximum energy efficiency!

Cellular/honeycomb shades come in a variety of fabrics and opacities, they can be installed with top-down/bottom-up functionality for a more versatile look. Not only are honeycomb shades energy efficient and stylish, but they can offer an added layer of privacy and dimension to your space. One of the design trends we’re watching for this season is texture, and the texture of these shades falls right into that category.  

If you’re looking to minimize energy consumption in a commercial space, automated shades offer an excellent solution that will help your bottom line. One of the other design trends we’re watching is creative office spaces, and we think utilizing the power of automated shades to ensure a productive atmosphere, free of sun glare and hot temperatures, is a great idea.

Automated shades can help provide what is often called daylight harvesting. Daylight harvesting is an energy management technique that uses natural daylight to offset the need for electric lighting to properly light a space. With some control systems, automated shades can be programmed to work with both lighting systems and HVAC controls to affect the temperature of your space and overall energy output. Imagine giving your AC a break with the touch of a button by lowering a translucent solar shade during peak daylight hours to naturally reduce heat gain and protect your valuables from UV rays!

Modern, stylish, secure–and most importantly, cool. Make the upgrade to automated or honeycomb shades this summer.

Shining New Light on Johnson Building at Boston Public Library

The Boston Public Library, located near the heart of downtown, is one of the most impressive landmarks in the city. Made up of several sections and additions, the Boston Public Library is a colossus that welcomes thousands of residents and tourists alike every day. One section of particularly reputable note is the Johnson Building.

Dating its origins all the way back to the early seventies and taking its name from noted architect Philip Johnson, the building occupies ten levels, including public services, behind-the-scenes library processing and administration, book stacks, and more.

The Johnson Building began a massive 130,000-square-foot renovation project, headed by General Contractor Consigli Construction, back in 2013. William Rawn Associates served as architects on the project. Renovations covered the entire first floor and mezzanine, as well as select areas of the second through sixth floors. The focus of the renovations was two-part: recognizing Mr. Johnson’s original vision while also redefining the library patron experience to match this updated space.

Ver-Tex is proud to have provided support on this project alongside Consigli. We provided approximately 25 multi-banded synchronized motorized shades, including wirelessly controlled shades in the Lobby and Reception areas. A pair of Monumental shades from MechoSystems are also included in the Rabb Hall. The Monumental shades are an adaptive shading system, using Mecho’s powerful ElectroShade motors. These shades are a perfect fit for shading large windows, such as what can be found in the Johnson Building. Ver-Tex also provided toilet partitions and restroom accessories among other specialty products.

The two-phase renovations were completed in summer 2016 with a grand ribbon cutting ceremony. Today, the Johnson Building boasts a colorful new Children’s Library; new workspaces and reading areas; revamped community learning center, and more. Be sure to stop by the Johnson Building sometime this summer to check it out!

From hotels to hospitals, libraries to other academic institutions, our design experts can help match shades to perfectly fit your commercial space.