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Improving Productivity and Performance

Focus Area Daylighting

Exterior courtyard of a three-sided glass wall building with wooden slats suspended in the air to provide shade.

Improving user productivity and reducing building construction costs

Glazing is one of the most desirable design elements in buildings for very good reason. Humans are hardwired to enjoy daylight and views of nature, which generate measurable physiological benefits of improved moods, alertness and circadian rhythm alignment. As our society spends more and more time indoors, designing with daylight becomes a critical way for us to support occupant health and wellbeing.

Daylighting also has an environmental benefit. Well-daylit spaces can reduce the need for overhead lighting, save operational electricity costs and reduce building emissions. In colder seasons, absorption of daylight by materials such as brick and concrete offers free heating for hours. Excessive heat gain and glare that characterize some climates also can be managed through thoughtful design.

Cost savings as well as improved comfort can be realized through early concept studies that seek to manage heat gain through appropriately sited buildings, thoughtful massing and studied shading devices. Page’s Building Sciences team works closely with our design teams across climate zones to ensure our designs minimize the risks of daylight while maximizing its benefits to office workers, students and residents.

Services

  • Architecture
  • Building Sciences
  • Civic / Government
  • Corporate / Commercial
  • Engineering
  • Interiors
  • Strategies / Analytics
  • Science / Technology

Data-driven daylight design

Utilizing our building performance expertise along with our state-of-the-art simulation tools, we can assess all aspects of daylight on our building design. Page provides the following evaluation services:

  • Climate analysis
  • Solar insolation and window-to-wall ratio studies to optimize façade design
  • Usable daylight studies and optimizations
  • Glare studies (ASE) and solutions evaluations
  • Photometric analysis of lighting and associated control systems
  • Building automation controls assessment and design
Daylighting analysis with different colors associated with varying temperature ranges
© Page

The success of this mission depends on how well employees perform

Respite and stewardship were key concepts guiding the Harris County Toll Road Authority Service Center facility design. Parametric modeling coupled with cost analyses were employed to minimize solar heat gain and glare. Site orientation, window location optimization and shading strategies were cost-effective ways to provide employees with opportunities to step onto shaded terraces and outdoor gathering spaces to mitigate the stress of the 24/7 operation of this designated critical facility.

Rendering of a midrise corporate office building with insets and screening on the facade.
© Page
Rendering of a midrise corporate building with insets and screening on its facade.
© Page
© Page

Making the desert manageable

Double-height glazing of deep-set window openings introduce daylight deep into the surrounding offices, public areas, and circulation routes for the GSA office building in the Southwestern region of the United States. Exterior shading systems of wood and metal shield the glass from glare, including the courtyard which has distinctive cablesupported transverse wood slats variably spaced to provide overhead sunscreening only where necessary.

Dramatic shot of an interior hallway with glass walls and shadows from exterior design elements.
© Patrick Coulie
Side by side images showing the shading elements of the project.
© Patrick Coulie

Taming the sun

Since the bright Texas sun provides not only daylight but also heat and glare, the design of the Travis County District Attorney’s office has carefully incorporated deep vertical sun shades of frosted glass and tuned to each façade to allow maximum daylight deep into the offices spaces while cutting down on glare and reducing heat gain on the glass curtain wall. Because the building is compact and densely programmed, the design provides maximum daylight within.

A person stands at the corner of the top floor of a midrise building clad in glass with louvered sunshade fins to deflect the glare and heat.
© Albert Večerka / ESTO Photographics

Quantifying the benefits

  • 15% INCREASE IN IMPROVED WELL-BEING & CREATIVITY, 6% PERCENT HIGHER PRODUCTIVITY FOR THOSE WITH PROXIMITY TO NATURAL ELEMENTS SUCH AS GREENERY AND SUNLIGHT
  • 7-18% HIGHER SCORES ON STANDARDIZED TESTS FOR STUDENTS WHO HAVE ACCESS TO DAYLIGHT

Testimonial

Big bang for the buck

Portrait of Asian-American woman in glasses and a button down shirt

“Daylight strategies set up architectural design for excellence. A design process that incorporates daylight analysis allows us to maximize the use of earth’s free resources while improving the quality of spaces for occupants.”

Jenni Huynh, Associate AIA, LEED Green Associate

Page Designer

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