Planning for Safety in the Architectural Design

22 December 2015
22 December 2015, Comments 0

It’s an unfortunate but necessary truth that in today’s era, when architects are drafting a design for their projects, extra precautions are vital to preserving the safety of all building occupants from external or internal threats. These safety precautions are able to keep occupants physically safe as well as increase their feelings of confidence and well-being while in an environment that they know is secure. On a basic level, certain design projects require the safety of bullet resistant products like windows, drawers, and pass-thrus, including banks, convenience stores, government buildings, high schools and colleges, hospitals, hotels and motels, police stations and stadiums. The list doesn’t end there; any building created today needs to incorporate safety features.

For architects in the beginning stages of planning a building, the modern emphasis on the importance of safety features presents a new opportunity for safer design. Many existing buildings have had to be retrofitted with security measures and technologies not accounted for in their original design, creating hostile atmospheres and design challenges that lead to increased cost and awkward user interaction. By keeping security features in mind from the beginning of the process through to completion, architects are now able to design safety-oriented buildings that look and feel right while having a more integrated series of security measures.

Planning for security

For buildings and structures that require bulletproof windows, as well as other active and passive security measures, including the details that best facilitate these measures is something that needs to be planned for at every level. In many cases, bullet resistant technologies will dictate wall thickness. Other measures like mounting systems need to be planned with specific measurements in mind. These can allow architects and planning teams to shop for the best deal on bullet-resistant measures, and create their plans with a specific system in mind, carrying the best features and price. Other details that might not be as obvious also need to be considered. For example, in rooms separated by a bullet-resistant window, the HVAC system needs to be modified to ensure that fresh air reaches all areas and creates a comfortable environment for workers.

Planning for aesthetics

As mentioned previously, older buildings weren’t designed with active safety measures in mind. This led to owners having to retrofit these structures as the need arose. Placing security measures without properly integrating them into the design took the issue of aesthetics out of the equation, and this has had a negative effect on the perception of these areas. For example, while grade schools with open metal detectors, bars on windows and more enhance safety, they also lead to greater anxiety and building occupants perhaps even feeling less safe. Open security features can remind of the possibility of a threat, but by focusing on aesthetics with these integrated features architects can distract from the core function of some of these spaces. From metal detector technology integrated into the design of an entrance structure, to surrounding bulletproof glass with more elegant casings, it’s possible to make a new building as beautiful as it is safe.

Planning for costs

It’s no secret that designing a safety-conscious building will take up more budget for materials and design than an ordinary structure. However, new clients in any number of industries will need to consider adding safety measures like bulletproof glass during their building’s lifespan. Retrofitting a structure is costly and inefficient, and the options for security are limited by the pre-existing physical structure in the space. Architects can work with clients from day one to select the most cost-effective measures to meet their needs and end up with lower overall costs down the line despite a higher initial budget.

Creative Industries, Inc., has been creating custom bullet resistant windows and products since 1970, working with architects and clients across almost every industry. We form collaborative partnerships with architects, helping them to find the best solutions to their need to account for safety in their design. For the latest in bullet resistant products and designs, call 1-888-991-4936 or contact us today. We’ll be happy to start a discussion on how we can help you make your next project as safe as it is beautiful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *