I just moved into a new apartment with floor-to-ceiling windows that afford great views of Boston. However, as much as I love this feature of my new place, Iím dreading the day when some unsuspecting bird plows into the glass and drops eight stories to the ground. Since birds canít see glass, the lives of our avian friends is often the price of having big windows.
But thanks to German design company Arnold Glas, that may not be the case much longer. Since 2006, Arnold Glas has manufactured ORNILUX Bird Protection Glass, which is coated with a UV reflective pattern thatís visible to birds, but transparent to the human eye. The companyís new model, Mikado, features a criss-cross pattern resembling a spider web, and is even less visible to the human eye than its predecessors. ORNILUX is working with various American groups, including the Audubon Society and the American Bird Conservancy, to create awareness of the issue of bird-window collisions and to encourage architects to incorporate solutions into buildings.
According to last weekís New York Times article about ORNILUX, in a test, three-quarters of birds avoided the glass. And besides saving avian lives, the glass is also energy efficient: it's available with either a low-E coating or a solar protective coating.
ORNILUX couldn't provide a per-square-foot price quote for us, since it varies too much project by project. But regardless, this sounds like something architects and builders should start installing, especially given the current green trend towards installing big windows in new buildings.
Tell us: would you consider putting this glass in your home?