Occidental Chemical Center
360 Rainbow Blvd. South
Niagara Falls, NY 14303
This 200,000 sf office building presents a unique and distinguished statement to the millions of passing visitors each year as they cross the Rainbow Bridge linking the U.S. and Canada. In approaching the project, designers faced an apparent exclusivity of goals -- develop a building which was both highly energy-efficient, yet highly transparent, capitalizing on a location which affords spectacular views of a great natural wonder, the Niagara Falls.
Conceived and constructed in the midst of the oil crisis of the early 1980s, this landmark structure continues to maintain its place as one of the most energy efficient commercial buildings in the world. One of the original "intelligent buildings", it serves as a testament to the seamless integration of innovative engineering strategies and award-winning design.
An all-glass exterior opposed conventional wisdom, which then held that energy economies could only be achieved by reducing the proportion of glazed surface. Between two glass walls forming the building skin, automatically controlled louvers transform the building shell from fully transparent during occupied hours to a fully opaque, insulated condition during unoccupied periods. The louvers allow extensive use of daylight through excellent diffusion of sunlight; and at the same time, provide outstanding heat shielding of the interior through near-perfect solar shading. In addition, the four-foot space between the glass is vented at all floors, creating a continuous thermal chimney around the building perimeter. By controlling air movement within the vented space, heat is collected or purged, depending on building demand.
The Center has been the subject of over 20 articles published in the general media and professional journals both in the US and abroad and the recipient of citations for design excellence from the AIA and Illuminating Engineering Society as well as the Energy Conservation Award from the Owens Corning Fiberglas Corporation.
Please note: Narrative information in this profile has been provided by Occidental Chemical Corporation or a representative of this facility. Other building information was verified and submitted to EPA at the time of application. Building energy performance, operating characteristics, and ownership/management may be subject to change over time.
Occidental Chemical Corporation
Year(s) Labeled (Rating):
Facility Type: Office
Total Floorspace: 202000 sf
Year Constructed: 1982
Contract Type: None