Crystal Windows Defy Northern Climate for Wisconsin Projects

Crystal Window & Door Systems recently supplied two new multifamily projects in Wisconsin – City Center in Brillion.

-Energy Efficient Vinyl WindowsEnhanceAffordable Housing Options –

QUEENS, NY, November 8, 2021 –National manufacturer Crystal Window & Door Systems recently completed supplying energy-efficient vinyl windows for two new construction mid-rise multifamily residences in Wisconsin.  The Crescent Lofts project at 315 West Franklin Street in Appleton comprised the historic renovation and conversion of a nearly 90-year old building (the former home of the Appleton Post-Crescent newspaper)to 33 unique apartments, and a newly constructed 4-story addition with 36 units.  Crystal supplied windows for the new addition; the windows in the original building were preserved. The City Center project at 230 North Main Street in Brillion features 40 apartments in a newly constructed 4-story building.

“Crystal has a good reputation with builders throughout the Midwest and northern states for quality manufacturing and a wide selection of products for every type of project,” said Frank Ganninger, Central West Regional Manager.  “We have supplied several projects in the past with Northcentral Construction and ABC Supply in the region and were pleased to participate again in new projects with them. We used enhanced glass packages for these windows and doors, making them ideal for the colder northern climate in Wisconsin.”

From its Chicago production facility, Crystal Windows supplied 186 window and door products for the City Center project and 157 for the Crescent Lofts building.  Both of the new construction projects in Wisconsin used a similar mix of Crystal products. By far, the most common window choice was the energy-efficient Crystal Series 300 Vinyl Single-Hung window.  The Series 300 windows were specified in single, twin, and triple units, using the continuous head and sill configuration option for the latter two models.  The double and triple units, spanning 5-feet and 7½-feet wide openings, provide extraordinary light and views for the building occupants.In addition to the single-hung windows, Crystal also supplied Series 310 Vinyl Picture windows for both projects.  A few Series 320 2-Lite Single Sliding Vinyl windows were specified for the City Center building.  All the Series 300 window models feature 2-⅝” jamb depth, integral nailing fin, energy-efficient extruded multi-chamber vinyl frames and sashes, full-welded corners, and ⅞” insulated glass units (IGUs).  The Series 300 single-hung is rated R-PG-25/R-PG35, the picture window is rated R-PG45 and the slider is rated R-PG35.

Crystal Window & Door Systems recently supplied two new multifamily projects in Wisconsin –Crescent Lofts in Appleton.

For the City Center building’s 12 faux-railed balconies, Crystal Series 1500 Vinyl Sliding Patio Doors were used to provide appropriate aesthetics and larger fresh air openings.  The Crescent Lofts project also specified a Series 1500 door.  The 1500 Sliding Patio Doors have 4-⅝” frame depth with 1” IGUs and feature integral nailing fin and strong full-fusion sash and frame corners, delivering an SGD-R35/LC-PG35 structural performance rating.

All the window and door materials were extruded in-house by Crystal in attractive and durable standard white color for City Center and beige for Crescent Lofts Apartments.  Double locks were supplied for the operating windows, and some were specified with ADA auto-activating locks.  In addition, all the operating windows and doors came factory equipped with Window Opening Control Device (WOCD) limit hardware.


Key to the new projects, all the Crystal Series 300 windows used double-pane IGUs comprised of 1/8” Vitro Sungate 460 low-e glass with argon gas.  Vitro Sungate 460 is designed especially for northern climates.  The highly energy-efficient glass is clear and neutrally reflective in appearance and with its great U-value and solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC), it is compliant with regional building energy codes and is the perfect choice for Wisconsin winters and summers.

Both the City Center Apartments in Brillionand the Crescent Lofts Apartments in Appleton were developed cooperatively with state funding to provide more affordable properties for the residents of these economically challenged communities as they experience rejuvenation. Each apartment development has both market rate and income restricted options for rent in 1-,2-, and 3-bedroom units.  Both projects offer onsite underground parking, community and fitness centers, and secure storage facility options.

With numerous multifamily, rehab, commercial, and hospitality projects in its portfolio, Northcentral Construction Company of Fond du Lac, WI, was the general contractor for both City Center and Crescent Lofts.  ABC Supply of Beloit, WI, supplied the new windows from Crystal.  Northpointe Development of Oshkosh, WI, spearheaded the two projects, which join a long list of their other community sensitive developments throughout the region.  ACC Management Group provides property management services for the two projects.

New Multifamily High-Rise Targets Sustainability with Crystal Vinyl MAGNUS Windows

Crystal Window & Door Systems recently supplied over 2,400 advanced MAGNUS Series 4500 uPVC vinyl commercial windows for the newly constructed multifamily development Archer Green Apartments in Queens, NY.  The project is one of the tallest buildings in North America to use uPVC windows.

-Queens NY Project is Among Tallest North American Use of uPVC Vinyl Windows-

QUEENS, NY, September 30, 2021 –A newly completed sustainable mixed use multifamily high-rise project in Jamaica, NY, is using advanced uPVC vinyl windows supplied by Crystal Window & Door Systems to achieve their energy efficiency goals.  The two towers of the Archer Green Apartments, rising 23 and 20 stories each, used combinations of Crystal MAGNUS Series 4500 uPVC windows to complete the 1,301 building openings.  The new development is located in the heart of the Jamaica (Queens) neighborhood at 92-32 168th Street.

The Crystal MAGNUS uPVC (unplasticized polyvinyl chloride) windows provide a remarkable balance of high commercial window structural ratings, great sound attenuation, and extraordinary thermal efficiency.  All of these are important factors as the new building is seeking LEED Gold Certification and it is located just off a busy heavily trafficked Jamaica Avenue.  At 23 stories, Archer Green Apartments is Crystal’s tallest MAGNUS window project to date and is one of the tallest buildings to use uPVC windows in North America by any manufacturer.  The Crystal Archer Green project is a leading example of the increasing popularity of high-rise uPVC windows.  In Europe, uPVC in tall buildings has been common for years.

“After the architect considered a heavy-commercial aluminum window, Crystal showed them the MAGNUS uPVC window which offers strength and energy efficiency with a clean modern look,” said Steven Yu, Metro New York Sales Manager.  “With advanced testing performed at an independent lab, Crystal demonstrated the MAGNUS would be the perfect solution and all project partners were convinced.”

The remarkable Crystal MAGNUS Series 4500 windows offer the best of both worlds: structural performance equal to top aluminum window products while also providing the outstanding thermal performance of vinyl windows.  With its European-inspired design, strong durable MAGNUS uPVC windows are especially suitable for large openings in multi-family, commercial, select high-rise, institutional, and even upscale residential properties.

Crystal supplied a total of 2,444 MAGNUS Series 4500 In-Swing and Fixed windows outfitted with vision or HVAC louver panels and configured in mulled combinations totaling 1,301 units.  Most of the MAGNUS units for the project consisted of reinforced in-swing windows mulled atop window frames fitted with louver panels, and in many cases alongside tall flanking fixed windows.  The largest combined units spanned 72” wide by 96” tall.

The MAGNUS 4500 In-Swing and Fixed windows both offer 3-¼” jambs, strong, energy efficient multiple cavity sashes and frames and boast an outstanding CW-PG95 AAMA structural rating.  The In-Swing casement model’s standard features include quality hardware, multi-point locks, sash perimeter compression seals, and optional NY City code window opening control devices (WOCD).  All the MAGNUS windows have a durable High-Definition Finish (HDF), with Anthracite Gray exterior and extruded white interior colors.

All the glazed MAGNUS windows for the project used dual-pane 1-¼” insulated glass units (IGUs) fabricated with stainless steel Intercept Warm-Edge spacers and Vitro Solarban 70XL low-E coated glass.  The IGUs were Argon-filled for enhanced thermal efficiency and used tempered or laminated glass where required for safety.  Both the glazed In-Swing and Fixed MAGNUS window met or exceeded project specifications of U-value 0.26, SHGC 0.37, and VLT 43%.  Sound reduction OITC rating specifications ranged from 23db to 33 db, depending on the floor.

Another 960 MAGNUS 4500 fixed window frames were factory glazed with louvers and 1” insulated blank-off panels for mating at the jobsite with PTAC units supplying individual room HVAC.  The Model AEL-42 aluminum louvers were supplied by Reliable Products of Geneva, AL.

The Archer Green Apartments development is playing a key role in the redevelopment of its surrounding neighborhood.  An interesting new property, Archer Green blends mixed-income affordable housing, ground floor commercial retail space, and a substantial community facility in the heart of downtown Jamaica, Queens.  Totaling 420,000 sq. ft., the building offers 351 apartments in two residential towers and below-grade parking.  The 23- and 20-story residential towers rise above a commercial 2-story pedestal which accommodates the retail space and community facility as well as a rooftop terrace and garden area.  Targeting LEED Gold Certification, Archer Green features many sustainability features in addition to the Crystal MAGNUS windows, including a novel state-of-the-art on-site Resilient Power Hub (RPH). This micro-grid system combines solar, co-generation, and reserve battery storage to provide electric power for emergency use and to reduce daily operating costs.

The Archer Green Apartments project was initiated through the close cooperation of three New York City agencies: the Economic Development Corporation (EDC), the Housing Development Corporation (HDC), and the Department of Housing Preservation & Development (HPD).  The project is part of the City’s Jamaica NOW Action Plan to revitalize this bustling commercial and residential neighborhood in Queens. It is built on a site that once held aNew York Police Department parking garage.

The owner’s representative was Renewable Construction/Omni NY LLC.  Edelman Sulta Knox Wood (ESKW) Architects of New York, NY, was the project architect, and Lettire Construction of New York, NY, was the general contractor.  The fenestration installer was Marvel Contracting Service of Queens, NY.

Crystal Windows Beat the Sun and Heat at New Phoenix Hotel

Crystal recently supplied new aluminum commercial windows with custom glass and frame finish for the latest Holiday Inn Express & Suites located in downtown Phoenix, AZ.  Photos courtesy of Baxter Construction.

-Custom Windows and Glass Offer Energy Efficiency, Beauty, and Durability-

QUEENS, NY, August 20, 2021 –Crystal Window & Door Systems is pleased to report that its window systems have successfully met the challenge of Phoenix, AZ’s legendary heat and sun.  The award-winning national manufacturer supplied 151 large commercial windows with a special low-E coated and tinted glass package from Vitro Architectural Glass and 119 HVAC panels for a new Holiday Inn Express & Suites in the heart of Phoenix, AZ. Located at 950 West Van Buren Street, the 119 room hotel is the latest addition to Crystal’s expanding portfolio of national hotel and hospitality projects.

“Due to the extreme sun and heat in Phoenix almost year-round, we supplied insulated dual-pane glass units with tinted and low-E coated glass plus Argon gas filling,” said Frank Ganninger, Crystal’s Central West regional manager.  “Together with the architect and GC, we selected the Pacifica Blue tint glass with a Solarban 60 low-E coating from Vitro Architectural Glass, which gives the building façade a really beautiful design, superior sun glare control, energy efficiency, and comfort for the interior.”

The project exclusively used the Crystal aluminum Series 2100 fixed picture window which features a 3-¼” frame depth and narrow sightlines. With various test sizes, the window has achieved CW-PG 60, CW-PG65, and CW-PG90 AAMA ratings.In guestrooms, the Crystal Series 2100 window system utilized a continuous head and sill with an integral T-jamb mullion to combine two glass sash panels into a single 96” wide frame.  The wide guestroom windows were then stacked atop similarly large 96” wide louver panels to accommodate individual room HVAC units.  Crystal factory-installed the louvers in Series 2100 window frames and mulled these to the glass windows filling the vast 96” x 96” openings and providing expansive views for each room while maintaining a pleasant interior environment. Crystal sourced the AEL-42 Aluminum Louver PTAC panels from Reliable Products of Geneva, AL, which assure consistent performance and accurate HVAC unit placement.

Crystal also supplied factory-mulled four fixed lite windows for hallway openings and single lite tall narrow stairwell windows to complete the façade.  All the Series 2100 window frames were specified with nailing fins and Crystal’scustom-designed head panning drip caps.  Crystal supplied the aluminum window and louver frames with a custom clear anodized Class 1 finish, which provides a brilliant shine and an even, consistent finish.  This also makes the aluminum components very resistant to degradation by sunlight, wind, and other harsh Southwest climate elements.

Key to Crystal’s success with taming the Arizona sun and heat is the insulated glass system used for the project’s windows.  Crystal sourced aspecialPacifica Blue glass from Vitro Architectural Glass, which handles sun heat gain and glare especially well, while providing a distinctive and attractive rich blue tint. With samples approved by the project architect and general contractor, Crystal increased the IGU to 1” rather than the standard ⅞” thickness and fabricated the IGUs with tinted exterior ¼” low-E SB60 glass and clear interior ¼” glass, tempered where required, and with Argon gas filling.

“The resulting IGUwith tinted Pacifica Blue glass, Solarban 60, and Argon filling delivers outstanding solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) of 0.22, as well as a low U-value of 0.24 for the glass system,” said Ganninger.

Baxter Construction Company, based in Fort Madison, IA, is a national firm with a broad commercial portfolio including hospitality and multi-family properties. Baxter was the general contractor for the Holiday Inn Express & Suites Downtown Phoenix project.  The architecture firm was Orcutt|Winslow of Phoenix, AZ.  The hotel has 119 guest rooms, on-site parking, business center amenities and meeting rooms, a pool, and a fitness center.It is conveniently located near the Phoenix government center and walkable arts district.

Bird-Friendly Glass Façades – How Fenestration Providers Add Value During Design

By Steve Chen, President, Crystal Window & Door Systems, New York

By now, architects, building owners, and contractors are well aware that municipalities around the nation are implementing “bird-friendly” glass requirements for new and renovated buildings.  For example, to reduce bird collisions with building façades, New York City enacted Local Law 15 (LL15) of 2020, effective January 10, 2021, requiring all newly constructed buildings and renovations of existing buildings involving replacement of windows and glass features to assess and utilize if required bird-friendly glass and other materials for the façade.

Last November, the NYC Department of Buildings issued its guidance document for where on buildings bird-friendly glass is required and what documentation must be provided to demonstrate compliance with LL15.  For new construction, exterior wall envelope and fly-through conditions up to 75 feet above grade must be 90% bird-friendly materials, and all other features such as vertical façades at any height adjacent to green roofs, glass railing systems, glass canopies, and other bird-strike hazards must be of bird-friendly materials.  For existing buildings, alterations that include replacement of all exterior glazing must also comply with LL15.

Architects and other design professionals must balance aesthetics, durability, and cost of glass options to arrive at the optimal solution for any project.  With so many factors to weigh, architects, building owners, and developers would be well-served by engaging a fenestration manufacturer experienced in a wide range of glass options, including bird-friendly ones, during the design phase of a new project or planning replacement of existing fenestration.

Design Considerations

Foremost, architects evaluate the aesthetics and functionality of façade materials including glass windows, doors, storefront, and curtain wall on the overall design of a building.  How much glass best suits the indoor environment and the occupants?  How well will the glass complement other façade materials such as masonry and metal panels?  Should tinted, reflective, or patterned glass be used?  The façade appearance and outlook view must be considered from both the exterior and interior vantage points.

Energy efficiency is another critical factor in selecting window and door systems.  Myriad choices exist for dual- and triple-pane insulated glass units, surface coatings to improve U-values and to reduce solar heat transmission, and window frame construction and insulation to provide greater energy efficiency.

Cost is of course a major factor in the design of any new construction or renovation project.  Architects must work closely with building owners and developers to select fenestration and other glass design elements that fit the budget for the project while meeting the design vision and applicable building and energy code requirements.

Now that bird-friendly glass is required on many projects in New York City (and in many other major cities in the country), there are additional factors that will greatly impact aesthetics, energy efficiency, and cost of every project.  This is where an experienced fenestration manufacturer can add tremendous value, saving time and expense, and presenting many available options.







Bird-friendly glass comes with various patterns that help deter bid collisions with glass facades. Fenestration manufacturers can advise architects and property owners on optimum choices during design phases of construction and renovation. Left: Guardian Glass bird 1st glass panes shown are coated with ultra-violet patterns which are visible to birds but nearly invisible to humans. Right: Typical bird-friendly glass patterns.

Shading and contrast enhanced above to show patterns

PHOTO COURTESY OF GUARDIAN GLASS, a national lass supplier to Crystal Window & Door Systems.

Bird-Friendly Glass Impact on Design

Bird-friendly glass is achieved in various ways.  The most common options are ceramic or silicone frits, UV patterns, and acid-etched patterns, all applied to the surface of the glass.  Each have advantages and tradeoffs for effectiveness and aesthetics, but there are other considerations, such as how the application works with other glass coatings, lamination, tempering, and long-term durability.  Frits reduce visible light transmission (VLT) to the inside and are highly visible to humans as well as birds.  UV patterns are less obtrusive to the view than frits but slightly less effective at deterring bird-glass collisions.  Acid-etching is most durable and may be combined with the low-E coatings on the same surface.  All these options affect the appearance of the building from the outside and the view from the inside, have different price points, impact energy efficiency coatings, and may affect glass warranties from the glass manufacturer.  A knowledgeable fenestration manufacturer can review all these options with the building design team to select the best choice for the project.

Glass units incorporated in window and door frames are fabricated from large sheets of glass.  The fabrication process starts with cutting the glass sheets and is automated to minimize unusable portions of glass.  As bird-friendly glass is only called for in specific instances, large window openings requiring bird-friendly glass can potentially generate a lot of waste of this specialized glass per sheet, if the maximum glass sheet size and cutting optimization are not considered in the project design and production planning process.  This can add to the already higher cost of bird-friendly glass and the project’s bottom line.  With a few modifications through value engineering, an experienced window manufacturer can advise the design team on the size, configuration, and placement of windows to achieve the project’s desired aesthetic and code compliance while minimizing material cost and waste.


Crystal Windows’ automated glass production equipment handles all types of glass, Including bird-friendly glass options,

Bring in the Experts

Compared with conventional clear or tinted glass used throughout existing buildings in New York and other cities, bird-friendly glass can add appreciably to the cost of fenestration for new or renovated properties.  Therefore, it is important early in the design phase for the architectural team to bring in a window manufacturer that is qualified and experienced to assist fenestration choices.  A competent fenestration manufacturer should:

  • Have a broad network of glass suppliers capable of providing many bird-friendly glass options to meet budget, energy efficiency, and other project requirements. Crystal has worked with many national glass suppliers for years, all offering a broad array of glass packages, reduced lead times, and competitive costs.
  • Have the value engineering and production expertise to assist the design team in selecting the best bird-friendly glass options. Crystal has a dedicated engineering and architectural sales staff that understands glass selection and glass unit production to meet energy efficiency, durability, aesthetic, and cost parameters of any project.  Crystal can even suggest low-cost options in lieu of bird-friendly glass, such as full insect screens on new or replacement conventional glass windows, that will meet performance requirements for bird collision deterrence.
  • Be knowledgeable on other fenestration and glass architectural elements such as glass canopies, glass railings, storefront, and curtain wall to aid the design team in specifying bird-friendly glass options for these components. Crystal has good working relationships with many of these related building product manufacturers to source and supply these components, often with substantial cost savings.

Designing new façades that meet building and energy code mandates, offer healthful daylighting and interior environment comfort for building occupants, and are visually beautiful is becoming a herculean task for architects.  By engaging an experienced window and door manufacturer early in the design phase, design professionals can make this task much more manageable, add value for their clients, and gain expertise for future design work.

Crystal Brightens Outlook for Florida College Students

-New University of Florida Housing Sports Crystal Windows and Doors-

QUEENS, NY, July 15, 2021 –Award-winning national manufacturer Crystal Window & Door Systems recently expanded its project portfolio with two new of state-of-the-art student housing properties in Florida.  These projects are the first Crystal has completed in the state, extending the company’s Eastern US sales along the entire East Coast from Maine to Florida. Located just a few blocks from the University of Florida main campus in Gainesville, The Hub on Third and The Hub on Campus Gainesville each used a variety of Crystal window and door products.

“ARCO National Construction, which we have worked with on prior projects, reached out to Crystal to provide windows and doors for these two new projects, and the Crystal team sprang into action for the opportunity to expand into Florida,” said Frank Ganninger, regional sales manager.  “A lot of coordination and planning by Crystal engineering and production staff came together to bring these projects to fruition.”

Due to the location of the new Hub buildings in Central Florida, which is subject to high winds, all façade materials including windows must meet stringent state building codes.  Crystal’s Engineering Department submitted product structural and energy performance test results and drawings to the Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation (DBPR), which approves construction materials for compliance with the state building code.  All the Crystal windows and doors submitted attained approval for use across much of Florida and are included in the DBPR online directory.

Crystal supplied over 2,100 new energy-efficient aluminum windows and doors for The Hub on Third (above) and The Hub on Campus Gainesville (below), the manufacturer’s first Florida projects.

“ARCO National Construction, which we have worked with on prior projects, reached out to Crystal to provide windows and doors for these two new projects, and the Crystal team sprang into action for the opportunity to expand into Florida,” said Frank Ganninger, regional sales manager.  “A lot of coordination and planning by Crystal engineering and production staff came together to bring these projects to fruition.”

Due to the location of the new Hub buildings in Central Florida, which is subject to high winds, all façade materials including windows must meet stringent state building codes.  Crystal’s Engineering Department submitted product structural and energy performance test results and drawings to the Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation (DBPR), which approves construction materials for compliance with the state building code.  All the Crystal windows and doors submitted attained approval for use across much of Florida and are included in the DBPR online directory.

“Once our products were fully approved, our engineering team coordinated closely with ARCO during the design phase to optimize the placement of eight different Crystal aluminum commercial window and door products for the two Hub properties,” said Ganninger.

The Hub on Campus Gainesville uses dramatic projected façade framing elements, most prominent on the building’s main northeast corner, to add three-dimensional interest to the structure.  The building also provides some expansive views with nearly floor-to-ceiling window combinations over 80” tall. The Hub on Third uses an eclectic mix of façade materials and colors to add architectural interest and meld with the campus and neighborhood’s building character.  The use of vertically stacked and horizontally ganged window combinations is common with the two Hub properties, along with fixed window sidelights and transoms for sliding glass doors on the private balconies.

The Hub on Campus Gainesville used 814 Crystal energy-efficient windows and doors and The Hub on Third used 1,323 windows and doors for a combined total of 2,137.  A wide variety of quality Crystal aluminum products were used for the buildings, including Series 2000A double-hung, 2100 fixed picture, Series 2300 and Series 5600 sliders, Series 8500 project-out awning, and Series 8500 fixed windows.  The projects also included the Crystal Series 1240 2-lite sliding patio doors with accompanying transoms and sidelights, and the Series 1450 swing terrace doors.

The Crystal Series 8500 and the Series 2100 were the most extensively used windows for The Hub projects, with 949 units and 473 units, respectively. The Series 8500 project-out awning (AW-PG80) and fixed (AW-PG85) were in many cases combined using the continuous master frame option.  The Series 8500 features 2-⅝” depth frame, bulb double-weatherstripping, 1” insulated glass units (IGUs), and satin chrome locking handles.  The Series 2100 is rated CW-PG65/PG90 and features 3-¼” frame depth, ⅞” IGUs, double-strength glass and continuous head/sill and T-jamb mullion options.

All the Crystal products used ⅞” or 1” dual-pane IGUs specified with Vitro Solarban 70 coated glass and Argon gas filling for enhanced energy efficiency in the Florida sun.  Where required, glass was tempered.  Durable AAMA 2604 black powder coat paint finished all the Crystal windows, doors, and exposed mullions and installation accessories for both new buildings.

The Hub on Third and The Hub on Campus Gainesville are part of the extensive portfolio of ARCO National Construction. Headquartered in St. Louis, MO, ARCO is one of the largest design/build general contractors in North America.  The projects’ developer is Core Spaces, headquartered in Austin, TX, which specializes in off-campus state-of-the-art student housing.

With nearly 350,000 overall square feet of living and ground-floor retail space, The Hub on Thirdfeatures 201 apartments in multiple student configurations.  The Hub on Campus Gainesville has 109 apartments and 193,000 overall square feet of living and ground-floor retail space.  Both properties boast sustainable design, fully-furnished apartments, group study and gathering spaces, rooftop pools, fire pits, and recreation spaces, fitness centers, high-tech security, and telecommunications throughout the buildings, and parking.

Crystal Windows Grace New Chicago-Area Development

Crystal recently supplied nearly 1,300 high-performance vinyl windows and patio doors for the new luxury development Uptown 500 in Wheeling, IL, outside Chicago (shown near completion).

-Manufacturer Supplies Energy Efficient Products for Wheeling, IL Luxury Property-


QUEENS, NY, June 25, 2021 –National manufacturer Crystal Window & Door Systems recently supplied nearly 1,300 energy-efficient vinyl windows and sliding patio doors for a major new mixed-use development just outside Chicago in Wheeling, IL.  Located at 500 West Dundee Road, the new $90 million luxury multi-family and commercial property Uptown 500, is the latest development near the heart of Wheeling’s strategically planned transit-oriented center.

“With our strong manufacturing presence in Chicago, Crystal is well known in the metro area,” said Frank Ganninger, Crystal Regional Sales Manager.“Early in the project, the developer KR Developments reached out to us to discuss fenestration options for Uptown 500, and we invited the firm’s project managers to tour our production facility in Chicago. They were impressed with our quality manufacturing processes.”

Crystal worked closely with Uptown 500’s architect, BSB Designs of Chicago, to ensure the windows would meet energy and performance specifications for the region.  “Our Series 300 windows offer great thermal efficiency, perfect for both winter and summer weather in Illinois,” said Ganninger.  “We were also able to recommend our quality two-tone finish to meet the design aesthetics for the exterior and interior.”

Once the approvals for Uptown 500 were in and construction underway, the project general contractor John James Construction of Chicago brought in regional building envelope specialist Denk & Roche Builders of Bensenville, IL to install the windows and doors.  Crystal sales representatives met with the installation teams on-site to guide and expedite proper installation of the Crystal products.

Crystal’s two-tone new construction Vinyl Series 300 windows and Vinyl Series 1500 patio doors are shown during installation(left and center) and completed (below) at Uptown 500.

The Uptown 500 project utilized Crystal Vinyl Series 300 single-hung and fixed picture windows as well as Crystal Vinyl Series 1500 sliding patio doors.  The Crystal Vinyl Series 300 windows were both factory- and field-mulled in large configurations, with some openings as large as 72” w x 84” tall, bringing nearly floor to ceiling daylight for the apartments.  In some cases, Series 300 fixed picture windows were mulled in ribbon configurations up high on the walls to provide a clerestory window effect.  Crystal supplied 2-lite Vinyl Series 1500 sliding patio doors for access to balconies or ground floor patios, and for select apartments, sliding doors were factory-mulled with side lights and/or transoms. The Series 300 vinyl windows, AAMA rated R-PG25/R-PG35 for the single-hung and R-PG45 for the picture, feature strong frames and sashes with full fusion welded corners, sloped sills, and integral nailing fins for new construction applications.  The single-hung offers an easy-clean tilt-in sash and a full width ergonomic lift rail for easy operation. The window’s⅞” insulated glass unit uses Solarban 60 glass and argon gas filling, which adds to the window’s energy efficient performance.

The Crystal Vinyl Series 1500 2-Lite Sliding Patio Door also features strong full fusion sashes and frame corners to deliver an AAMA SGD-R35/LC-PG35 rating.  With tempered Solarban 60 coated glass and argon gas, the patio door’s dual-pane 1” insulated glass unit provides superior energy efficiency.  The sliding patio door offers an integral nailing fin to speed and simplify installations, adjustable steel tandem rollers for easy operation, and a high glass-to-frame area ratio for great views.

To enhance the modern exterior architectural design while still providing the clean and bright interior white window look, all the Crystal windows and doors for the project were ordered with a two-tone finish.  The window and door exteriors were finished in a dark brown color and the interiors were kept white.

Uptown 500offers 321 studio, 1-, and 2-bedroom luxury apartments, with 12,000 sq. ft. of commercial retail space on the ground floor.  The development is just a few blocks from the Metra rail line, facilitating commuting to the Chicago area’s business districts and airports.  The complex is also a block from Wheeling’s 100-acre Heritage Park nature and recreation center and the new Wheeling Town Center.  The Uptown 500 campus features several common work and recreation spaces throughout the building and outdoor property, along with private meeting, dining, and entertainment areas, heated outdoor pool, rooftop deck, fitness centers, concierge services, and onsite parking.

Crystal WindowsEnters Second Decade of Harbor Point Project

-Firm Supplies High-Performance Windows for OngoingStamford, CT Development –

QUEENS, NY, March 11, 2021 –For over 10 years, developer Building & Land Technology has continued to tap the product design and manufacturing expertise of national manufacturer Crystal Window & Door Systems for its expansive upscale waterfront development Harbor Point in Stamford, CT. To date, Crystal has been selected to supply thousands of energy-efficient aluminum windows and doors for many new high-rises and mid-rise luxury apartment buildings throughout this development less than 40 miles northeast of New York City.  Entering the second decade of its involvement in the project, Crystal has recently added several new buildings to itsHarbor Point completed portfolio, and more are in the construction phase.

Crystal Window & Door Systems supplied high-performancealuminum windows and doors in expansive configurations for high-rise The Allure (above), one of three new projects at one of the largest developments in the country, Harbor Point in Stamford, CT.

“It is a testament to Crystal’s capabilities that we continue to partner with Building & Land Technology as a key supplier for this premier development,” said Blaise Benevenga, Crystal’s New England Regional Sales Manager.  “The Crystal window and door products selected for each building offer sleek, contemporary styling, superior energy efficiency and sound attenuation, strength and durability, and effortless operation.  They are the perfect choice for the high-end Harbor Point development.”To date, Crystal has supplied over 16,000 high-performance windows and doors for 12 buildings, and more Harbor Point buildings are under construction.


The three latest buildings completed are NV@Harbor Point, Allure, and Escape to Harbor Point.  All the buildings are high-rise, twin-tower complexes ranging in height from 16 to 22 floors with extraordinary views, courtesy of nearly floor-to-ceiling Crystal window and glass door combinations.  Crystal supplied several of its newer high-performance products as well as the company’s popular classic product lines for these residences.

For the new projects, Crystal supplied aluminum Series 5600 sliding and Series 5100 fixed windows, along with its aluminum Series 8600 windows in casement, fixed, awning, and hopper styles.  Most building openings used large expansive continuous head and sill master frame ganged and stacked configurations. A combined total of 7,155 Crystal windows were supplied for these latest three luxury apartment buildings.

Crystal supplied high-performance heavy-commercial windows and doors for NV@Harbor Point (Stamford, CT), one of three new projects recently completed at this major development.

The Series 5600 and 5100 windows feature 3-¼” jambs, with AAMA ratings of AW-PG40/50and AW-PG100, respectively, as well as a unique self-mulling jamb feature.  The sliding windows feature stainless steel sash rollers, full height sash clip lock pull rails, and interlocking meeting rails.  The AW-rated Series 8600 windows complement other Crystal products supplied, with 3-¼” depth frames and continuous master frame and mulling options. Casement and projected windows feature European-style hardware and multi-point locks.


For access to balconies and outdoor spaces, Crystal provided a total of 1,502 heavy-commercial Series 1280 aluminum sliding patio doors and heavy-commercial Series 1450 outswing aluminum terrace doors. The Series 1280 sliding patio door features a 4-916” frame depth, heavy-duty adjustable stainless steel quad rollers for operation ease and durability, as well as a contemporary-style locking handle. It is AAMA rated AW-PG50. The Series 1450 outswing aluminum terrace door is rated AW-PG75 and features a 3-¼” frame depth, multi-point locking system, and a European-style locking handle.  Both door styles are available with matching side and transom glass units and ADA compliant sills.


All of the Crystal window and door products supplied used 1” dual-pane insulating glass units with Solarban 60 Low-E coating and Argon gas filling, and tempered glass panels where code required and for doors.  All frames are finished in Crystal’s no-VOC environmentally-sustainable simulated anodized silver AAMA 2604 powder coat paint.


“Crystal fenestration products are the perfect choice for a location such as Harbor Point, with its bustling waterfront environment that challenges building materials,” said Benevenga.  “Our strong, durable products withstand the windy marine climate, and provide weather resistance, energy efficiency, and sound attenuation creating the most comfortable living spaces for residents.  Crystal Windows and doors at Harbor Point’s many luxury apartment buildings will provide long-lasting beauty and stunning views for many years to come.”


Harbor Point in Stamford, CT, is one of the largest mixed-use brownfield redevelopments in the country.  National developer Building & Land Technology of Stamford, with architecture and planning firm EDI International of New York, designed this $3.5 billion master-planned, LEED Gold Transit-Oriented Development project with five distinct neighborhoods on 177 acres to rejuvenate this neglected area of Stamford and reconnect residents with the waterfront.  Harbor Point features millions of square feet of commercial and residential space, many outdoor recreational park areas, a full-service marina, shops, restaurants, and convenient public transportation.  Construction of new residential and commercial buildings in the development continues.


The three latest luxury apartment buildings supplied by Crystal have over 400 apartments each and offer rooftop and ground-level terraces with pool, grill, firepit, and lounge areas, fitness and gaming centers, garage parking, concierge services, and pet-friendly options.


Crystal Commercial Vinyl Windows Benefit New High-Rise

Crystal Windows supplied nearly 1,000 uPVC MAGNUS Series 4500 commercial vinyl windows for the new multi-family property The Gilbert on First in East Harlem, Manhattan.

-Crystal uPVC MAGNUS Windows Installed at The Gilbert in Manhattan –

QUEENS, NY, August 7, 2020 –The residents of the new The Gilbert on First apartment building in East Harlem, Manhattan, are benefitting from the state-of-the-art commercial vinyl windows supplied by award-winning national manufacturer Crystal Window & Door Systems.  The 16-story building located at 1912 First Avenue between 97th and 99th Streets boasts Crystal’s uPVC MAGNUS Series 4500 windows.  These commercial windows offer the strength and durability of aluminum frame windows with the superior energy efficiency of vinyl products.  Commercial uPVC vinyl windows have been widely used throughout Europe for many years.

Besides the windows, residents at The Gilbert on First will further benefit from integral window louvers for HVAC units supplied by Crystal, as well as the aesthetics of a unique “shadow box” custom integral window frame. The Gilbert on First is the latest in a growing list of major multi-family properties where architects, developers, and general contractors are selecting the Crystal uPVC MAGNUS commercial window line.

The Gilbert on First is directly across from NYC Health & Hospitals Metropolitan campus and is the second building in a two-part development which includes Draper Hall, (originally the hospital’s nursing staff dormitory, now senior housing) which was renovated a few years ago and for which Crystal also supplied new windows.  The Gilbert on First offers 152 subsidized units ranging from studios to 3-bedroom apartments and features community rooms, outdoor terraces, and an expansive garden space shared with Draper Hall. Just one block off the FDR Drive on Manhattan’s east side, the apartments overlook the East River with great views of the skyline and many bridges.

In total, 925 white uPVC MAGNUS Series 4500 commercial vinyl windows were used in The Gilbert on First.  The 3-¼” jamb internally-reinforced In-Swing (Turn Only) and Fixed window styles were predominantly mulled in 2- and 3-window configurations or in arrangements combining vision glass with louver panels.  Joined by structurally reinforced mullions, the multiple-window configurations provide large expanses of glass, some as vast as 72” wide by 87” tall.  The In-Swing windows were equipped with NY City approved limit-opening devices.









The Gilbert on First project used an architect-designed, custom fabricated shadow box feature on two sides of the south façade windows (left) to add energy-saving sunshading and visual interest.  Crystal’s MAGNUS Series 4500 In-Swing window(right) and Fixed window styles were used for this project.

True to the MAGNUS uPVC brand, the Series 4500 In-Swing Turn window boasts an outstanding CW-PG95 structural rating as well as an excellent energy efficient 0.29 U-value.  Both the In-Swing and Fixed windows were glazed with 1” insulated glass units (IGUs) using Vitro 316” Solarban 60 and clear glass lights.  In select instances where required by code, the double glass lights were tempered.  The non-tempered IGUs were fabricated by Crystal Windows and the tempered units by Vitro.

Integral HVAC louvers were sourced and factory-installed by Crystal into many of the window combination units.  Crystal used 387 PTAC Louver Model AEL-42 units by Reliable of Geneva, AL, for the project.

Crystal tapped into its broad network of resources for The Gilbert on First project to provide a unique architect-designed “shadow box” window feature for the building’s expansive open exposure south-facing façade.  The “shadow box” aluminum components– 8” deep with a tapering thickness from 1-½” to ¾” – were custom fabricated by Crystal’s subsidiary Gateway Extrusions and attached to the windows at the Crystal factory.  Using a novel approach, the architect designed the shadow box surround for installation on only two sides of the window perimeter, the head and west jambs, to create a contemporary decorative aesthetic and energy efficient sunshading effect.

The Gilbert on First is owned by Gilbert Apartments, LLC, an affiliate of developer SKA Marin, both of Great Neck, NY.  Dattner Architects of New York, NY, provided building design services and Procida Construction of the Bronx, NY was the general contractor.  Marvel Contracting of Oakland Gardens, NY provided window installation services.  The building is managed by Wavecrest Management of Richmond Hill, NY.

Crystal WindowsOffer Great Views for Cedarbrook Residents

-ManufacturerSupplies Fenestration at New Property in Rochester MI-

CHICAGO, IL, February 14, 2020 –Crystal Window & Door Systems’ Chicago production facility is providing beautiful views for the newly constructed senior residence Cedarbrook of Rochester with 1,341 new Crystal commercial aluminum windows and terrace doors. The new independent, assisted, and memory care facility is located in Rochester, MI, just north of Detroit.

“Crystal’s products are well suited for the large and growing senior housing market across the country,” said Scott Anderson, Crystal sales executive and project manager for Cedarbrook.  “Our windows and doors offer ease of operation, quality hardware, ADA compliance options, and high thermal energy efficiency, all combined into thoughtful design for the comfort of senior residents.”

Crystal teamed up with DeYonker Window & Door of Rochester, MI, to supply the project on the tight construction schedule.  “Crystal has worked on many past projects with DeYonker’s project manager Jesse Adler, who knows our broad product line and production capabilities,” said Anderson.  “To speed shipments and reduce transportation costs for this project, we manufactured most of the products at Crystal’s Chicago facility. Papo Perez, Crystal’s Ohio Branch Manager, also assisted with the project.  So, you can see Crystal’s vast national network of facilities and staff is definitely advantageous for owners, architects, and GCs.”

The Cedarbrook of Rochester project used an assortment of the Crystal 3-¼” jamb, ⅞” insulated glass pocket aluminum 2000 Series operating and fixed windows.  Most of the 2000 Series windows were installed in the building openings in large combined assemblies using mullions and continuous head and sill master frames.  The most prevalent was the Series 2100Aluminum Fixed Picture Window, of which 752 were ordered.  The AAMA rated CW-PG65/PG-50 Crystal 2100 Fixed Picture Windows were specified in single, 2-lite, and 3-light equal and unequal configurations in both horizontal and vertical orientations.  With spans up to 108” in height or width, these windows, especially when combined with other windows, provided aesthetic appeal to the façade and great views for the residents.

The project also called for 233 of Crystal’s tilt-in sash Series 2000A Aluminum Double-Hung Window in both single and twin configurations, some as large as 108” wide by 80” tall.  Adding visual interest, all of the 2000A Double-Hung Windows were specified in an unequal sash “cottage-style” configuration.  To aid in operation, larger heavier sashes were equipped with Ultra-Lift balances, which is especially important for a senior residence.

Crystal Supplies Advanced uPVC Windows for New Airport Hotel

– Manufacturer SuppliesNew Energy EfficientWindowsfor San Diego Marriott Affiliate-

RIVERSIDE, CA, November 22, 2019 –Crystal California, the West Coast production operation of national manufacturer Crystal Window & Door Systems, recently provided commercial vinyl windows for the new TownePlace Suites by Marriott hotel located near the San Diego International Airport. Crystal supplied one of its leading products for this project, the Magnus Series 4500, the European inspired design uPVC commercial vinyl window.  Crystal’s Magnus products combine the strength and durability of commercial aluminum windows with the outstanding thermal performance of vinyl windows.

“Crystal was pleased to work with fenestration dealer and installer Picture Perfect Windows & Doors to design the right window system for this new hotel,” said Crystal project manager Vivian DeMarco. “Crystal also worked closely with the general contractor Roy Anderson Corporation adjusting production and delivery of the windows to accommodate the changing needs of the project schedule.”

The project called for a total of 324 Crystal Magnus Series 4500 Fixed Picture Windows with a 3-¼” frame depth and AAMA PG40 rating.  Most of the openings were specified with sash combinations involving vision glass with PTAC louver units below and some with grey spandrel laminated glass transoms all contained within a master frame.  The majority of the Crystal Magnus windows were tall, with most either 90” or 124” in height.  Optional nailing fins aided the installation of the new construction windows.

Crystal California supplied its high-end commercial Magnus Series 4500 uPVC windows for the new TownePlace Suites by Marriott at San Diego International Airport, providing superior guest comfort.

To provide the visual aesthetics of multiple glass lights in one opening, 1.85” wide simulated divided light tape and 1” thick applied sculpted grids were used extensively.  High-quality durable dark bronze color foil laminate was used on the window frame exteriors with either extruded white vinyl or the bronze foil for interiors.

The 259 PTAC louvers positioned in the window openings below the vision glass mate with space conditioning units supplying individual guest rooms.  The Model AEL-42 PTAC louvers were sourced from Reliable of Geneva, AL, and factory installed in the window frames by Crystal prior to jobsite delivery.

The Series 4500 windows’ 1” insulated glass units (IGUs) utilized dual panes of Cardinal 316” LoĒ3-366 exterior glass and 316” clear interior glass with Argon gas filling.  The IGUs help the windows deliver great U-values of 0.28 and Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC) values of 0.22.

TownePlace Suites by Marriott at San Diego Airport is part of the Liberty StationCommunity and is located on a decommissioned Naval Training Center. With a naval motif inspired interior design, the hotel features 222 guest rooms, breakfast dining area, outdoor patio and pool facilities, a fitness center, meeting rooms, and catering for events.  Hospitality specialist architecture firm Degan&Degan of Seattle, WA, designed the hotel, and Roy Anderson Corporation, a subsidiary of Tutor Perini headquartered in Gulfport, MS, was the general contractor.  Picture Perfect Windows & Doors of San Diego provided fenestration installation services for the project.