Photo credit: Max Touhey

The glazing installation is complete at the new TWA Hotel’s north tower at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. The acoustical glass contains seven layers of sound-proofing materials. Glazing installation on the south tower will begin this month, and is expected to be completed by mid-May.

Once complete in early 2019, the TWA Hotel will preserve Eero Saarinen’s iconic TWA Flight Center, reusing the terminal as a hotel with 505 guestrooms, 50,000 square feet of meeting and event space and a variety of food, beverage and retail options. The two low-rise hotel structures are set back on either side of the terminal, designed to defer to the historic landmark. Saarinen’s TWA Flight Center terminal building will serve as the hotel lobby with 200,000 square feet of space.

“This project is truly unique because it entails the restoration of a historic building as well as ground-up construction. The TWA Flight Center is an architectural marvel, so we are advancing a design carefully orchestrated to preserve the architectural integrity of the original terminal,” says Jason Garone, vice president of construction for MCR.

Photo credit: Max Touhey

The project includes 78,000 square feet of unitized curtainwall manufactured by Fabbrica. Each unit weighs up to 1,700 pounds and is 4 feet 4 inches wide by 9 feet 8 inches tall. There are a total of 2,055 curtainwall units that make up the north and south hotels.

The vision glass, supplied by Germany-based Interpane, is 4-5/16 inches thick. Each vision glass unit weighs 1,300 pounds

According to Alberto De Gobbi, president and CEO of Fabbrica, the triple-laminated insulating glass is made up of six layers of low-iron glass plus one layer of Planibel grey glass and two argon-filled air spacers. Each vision curtainwall unit holds one lite of glass to make it a true vision unit with no spandrel area.

The curtainwall is designed to meet the acoustic challenges created by the hotel’s airport location.

Photo credit: Max Touhey

The vision glass has a sound transmission class (STC) rating of 48, and an outdoor-indoor transmission class (OITC) rating of 41. The assembled curtainwall units have an STC rating of 45 and an OITC rating of 40.

According to De Gobbi, the curtainwall framing is filled with a combination of 14-gauge steel, mass-loaded vinyl and fiberglass insulation in order to minimize acoustic loss. During the acoustic system testing at Intertek-York, Pa., we tested numerous methods for acoustic improvements to achieve the optimal result.

Photo credit: Max Touhey

The building’s airside elevations are adjacent to the JetBlue arrivals. As a result, logistics plans were developed during the tender stage by Fabbrica and coordinated closely with Turner.

Fabbrica supplied interior materials to minimize sound transmission between rooms, aluminum shade pockets, demising wall trims, sill trims, slab closures and blind tracks for the project.

The intent of the system is to provide an aesthetic housing for the shade roll which minimizes light leak from the exterior. The hotel requirement was for total black out for guests, especially the flight crews.