Last week I fled the cold and snow for a few days of fun in the sun and warmer temps … okay … so there wasn’t really any fun in the sun, but the temperature was warmer. So knowing the cold and snow were waiting for me when I got home, I settled myself into three days of inside meetings.

In case you missed it, I was in Naples, Fla., last week for the National Glass Association’s Annual Conference. This was the event previously organized by the Glass Association of North America, which formally merged into the NGA a year ago. There was a lot of good discussion throughout the event.

One of the most interesting conversations came from Lisa Rammig from Eckersley O’Callaghan (EOC) during a breakfast presentation. For anyone not familiar with it, EOC is a structural engineering firm that was involved with the first glass staircase at the SoHo Apple store in the early 2000s. Their talents, skills and abilities have evolved exponentially in the nearly two decades since that first staircase. And it’s thanks to advances in glass technologies that have made these developments possible. Glass is clearer, thinner, bigger, stronger, allowing architects and engineers to essentially do more with less.

Lisa Rammig from EOC spoke during the NGA’s Annual Conference about structural glass trends and possibilities.

The Apple Cube outside the 5th Avenue store in New York is such an example. The original structure was built with 106 panels and 250 primary fittings; a re-design in 2011 brought that down to 15 panels and 40 fittings.

The glass slide from glasstec 2016.

But probably most intriguing, has been the glass playground equipment, if you will, that we’ve seen at the last two glasstec events. In 2016 there was a glass slide and last year it was the see-saw.

The glass seesaw grabbed a lot of attention at glasstec 2018.

Someone asked Rammig what we might see next. While she didn’t divulge any top secret information, she did mention interest in playing around (pardon the pun) with possibilities in the use of thin glass … maybe a glass trampoline, she suggested.

And that would be interesting … though I don’t think I’d be willing to give it a go. I’m sure lots of exciting possibilities will await us at glasstec 2020.