‘Operable Walls’ have become a buzz-word in the glass industry.
These sliding, stackable dividing glass partition walls have, in truth, been around for some time, although the fully-glazed version is relatively recent. They came with a shift in architectural design that largely started in the states of California and New Mexico a decade or so ago. There, in a time of an expanding economy, people living in those fair-weather states were reaching out to architects, designers and builders to come up with ideas that integrated the surrounding environment into the home.
There was a desire (quite natural in such an environment) to have houses that embraced the outside, connected the inhabitants to the outdoors making it more accessible to them while still allowing the shelter and security that a house provides. At the time, many of these experimental homes were situated where they had expansive rural or coastal views. Naturally, glass became a much-utilised feature. Then there was the GFC.
We have been fortunate in Australia to have avoided the full impact of the GFC and high-end designers and architects have taken up the Operable Glass Wall baton with a will. It is common now to see them touted as “a modern and stylish alternative to traditional partitions”. Quite so.
And now enter Switchable Privacy Glass Operable Walls. Not only do they provide an innovative way of creating separate living areas while maintaining an overall feel of open space, but at the flick of a switch you can provide curtain-like privacy to a selected area.
Unlike curtains or blinds however, the easy-to-clean surface of glass means low maintenance. As a laminated glass product Switchable Privacy Glass immediately falls into the category of ‘safety glass’ but our Operable Glass Wall partitions will normally be constructed with ‘Grade A’ toughened glass for added strength and safety due to their large size. Innovative and creative architectural design is breaking new boundaries in the use of Switchable Privacy Glass. Bring it on!