PaintSquare.com
Follow us on Twitter Follow us on LinkedIn Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram Visit the TPC Store
Search the site

 

Advertisement

Sherwin-Williams


Coatings Industry News

Main News Page


Above Chicago, Cracking on the Ledge

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

More items for Coating Materials

Comment | More

The sound and sight of protective coatings cracking at the top of America's tallest building has left visitors shaken, but officials insist the failure held no danger.

The episode Wednesday (May 28) terrified tourists on the 103rd-floor glass ledge of Chicago's Willis Tower (formerly, and still commonly, called the Sears Tower).

Skydeck
The Ledge Factsheet

The protective coating cracked beneath visitors on The Ledge, but officials said no one was in danger.

Alejandro Garibay, 23, of California, and four family members were posing for photos on one of the four glass lookout ledges atop the skyscraper when they heard cracking noises and saw “lines going through the glass,” he told media outlets.

“We immediately jumped off as fast as we could,” Garibay said, who sent his a photo of the damaged ledge to several news outlets.

“The Ledge” experience on the 103rd floor of the skyscraper consists of fully enclosed, retractable glass boxes that jut out from the building about four feet.

Opened in 2009, the glass boxes—comprised of three layers of half-inch-thick glass laminated into a seamless unit—are designed to hold five tons and have been coated in a protective layer to prevent scratching.

No Danger to Visitors

Despite the scare, Willis Tower officials say Garibay and his family weren’t in any danger.

TheLedge cracking - Garibay
Courtesy Alejandro Garibay / NBC Chicago

Alejandro Garibay provided this photo of the cracked glass to several news outlets.

"At no time whatsoever was the integrity of the structure compromised," Bill Utter, a Willis Tower spokesman, told news bureaus.

“Occasionally, the protective coating will crack, as it is designed to in order to protect the surface of the glass,” according to a post on the Willis Tower’s Facebook page.

No information about the coating type was available. Neither the owner nor the contractor responded to a request last week for more information.

The coating has cracked on The Ledge three times in the last five years, according to the Chicago Tribune. The protective coating is routinely replaced every six to nine months, the newspaper reported, citing MTH Industries, of Chicago, the contractors who installed the 1,500-pound glass panels in 2009.

Closed for Repairs

Inspectors from the city’s building department closed down the skyboxes Thursday so that a new layer of protective coating and glass could be installed on the damaged box.

The unaffected skyboxes reopened Thursday afternoon, according to the Tribune.

Ledge coating and glass replacement
Skydeck Facebook Image

Glass and architectural metal contractor MTH Industries replaced the cracked coating and installed a new layer of glass to the damaged Ledge.

Later Thursday evening, Willis Tower officials announced on Facebook that the new coating had been installed and the affected Ledge would reopen Friday (May 30) after city inspectors had a chance to examine the new installation.

Willis Tower posted photos of the glass and architectural metal contractors performing work on the damaged skybox, pulling off the cracked coating and putting in new glass.

MTH Industries did not immediately respond Friday to a request for more information about the dizzying project.

Skydeck and Ledge

The Skydeck attracts 1.3 million visitors annually who are able to view up to 50 miles and four states.

The Ledge dares visitors to “feel the city from 103 floors over Wacker Drive and the Chicago River” and is intended to be a sort of thrill ride.

Inspiration for The Ledge came from hundreds of forehead prints left behind on Skydeck windows and the Sears Tower scene from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, in which children were going right up to window, according to project details.

Skidmore, Owings and Merrill designed The Ledge. They also designed the original landmark building in 1974.

   

Tagged categories: Architecture; Commercial Buildings; Glass coatings; Health and safety

Comment Join the Conversation:

Sign in to our community to add your comments.

Advertisements
 
Jotun Paints Inc.
 
Jotun Jotachar 1709
 
Mesh-free passive fire protection epoxy designed to protect against hydrocarbon pool fire scenarios for up to four hours as defined in the ANSI/UL1709 standard.
 

 
BASF
 
New resins from BASF will have metals loving water!
 
Excellent corrosion resistance, low VOC, high gloss, thin films www.basf.us/industrialcoatings dpsolutions@basf.com 800-231-7868
 

 
SAFE Systems, Inc.
 
Portable Dust Collectors for Tough Environments
 
Trailer and skid-mounted models in numerous sizes, powered by electric and/or diesel. Sloped roofs, multiple dust inlets, high static, dampered fans. Lockable power & drive compartments.
 

 
Novatek Corporation
 
Dustless Coatings Removal
 
Novatek Corporation, Dustless Coatings Removal Strip, clean and profile all dust free! Comply with new lead standards. Contact today: (866) 563-7800 www.Novatekco.com
 

 
Blastox/The TDJ Group, Inc.
 
Blastox® - One Step Lead Abatement
 
Sandblast additive delivered to jobsite pre-blended to eliminate hazardous abrasive wastes. Why mix, meter or apply at the job-site? Blast with ease and
Let your painters paint!
1(800)-252-7869
 

 
CS Unitec
 
Dust Control Surface Prep Industrial Tools for Steel and Concrete
 
Scarifying • Grinding Scabbling • Descaling Dust collection for safer working conditions. Low-vibration for less worker fatigue. Trelawny™ power tools from CS Unitec. Learn more…
 

 
Carboline Company
 
New product: Carbozinc® 608 HB
 
Introducing a new high build zinc-rich primer that can save you time and money by eliminating the epoxy intermediate coat!
 

 
Mitsubishi Gas Chemical America
 
Performance Amine 1,3-BAC
 
A highly reactive cycloaliphatic diamine offering superior performance. Reasonable cost and curing efficacy makes it suitable for all types of epoxy resin applications.
 

 
ARC / A.W. Chesterton Company
 
Rapid Curing Coating
 
Cures under adverse conditions with maximum adhesion
 

 
Tarps manufacturing, Inc.
 
QUALITY MADE IN AMERICA —Available near you!
 
CLICK to get a behind-the-scenes look at how Tarps Manufacturing makes the highest-quality tarps right here in the USA — available nationwide.
 

 
 
 

Technology Publishing Co., 1501 Reedsdale Street, Suite 2008, Pittsburgh, PA 15233

TEL 1-412-431-8300  • FAX  1-412-431-5428  •  EMAIL webmaster@paintsquare.com


The Technology Publishing Network

Durability + Design PaintSquare the Journal of Protective Coatings & Linings Paint BidTracker

 
EXPLORE:      JPCL   |   PaintSquare News   |   Interact   |   Buying Guides   |   Webinars   |   Resources   |   Classifieds
REGISTER AND SUBSCRIBE:      Free PaintSquare Registration   |   Subscribe to JPCL   |   Subscribe to PaintSquare News
MORE:      About PaintSquare.com   |   Privacy Policy (Updated 5/24/2018)   |   Terms & Conditions   |   Support   |   Site Map   |   Search   |   Contact Us