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TSK Architects' design for North Butte County Courthouse, Chico, Calif., was inspired by buttes in surrounding foothills.

TSK Architects' design for North Butte County Courthouse, Chico, Calif., was inspired by buttes in surrounding foothills. A steel-and-glass curtainwall entry, referring to the area's rock formations, pierces through the roofline to form a cupola.

Windom Kimsey is design principal and president at TSK Architects. "The curtainwall and cupola mirror the shape of the landforms, giving structure to both the building and the community," Kimsey says. "People can look up from almost anywhere in the surrounding development and see the entry. It anchors the courthouse to the community." TSK Architects and Technical Glass Products designed a curtainwall and cupola that was adaptable enough to follow the butte's tall, geometrical shape and strong enough to support large free spans of glazing to flood the entry with daylight.

"We wanted the curtainwall and cupola to taper in from all corners like the buttes," Kimsey says. "But, it was important they do so without obtrusive frame profiles blocking daylight and detracting from the building's modern aesthetic. This was especially critical in the cupola, where the angles are much tighter. Technical Glass Products' steel curtainwall system made it possible for us to meet the project's unique geometrical needs without compromising on appearance."

McCumber's Glass Inc. installed Technical Glass Products' SteelBuilt Curtainwall Infinity System with custom, 3 1/8 inches wide by 12 inches deep, laser-welded steel back mullions for the 67,433-square-foot courthouse, which was completed in 2015. Custom extruded aluminum face caps in a U-shape at the entry enable the steel curtainwall system to match the appearance of surrounding aluminum door and window systems.

Architect: TSK Architects, Las Vegas, www.tska.com
Installer: McCumber's Glass Inc., Marysville, Calif., www.mccumbersglassinc.com
Curtainwall: Technical Glass Products, Snoqualmie, Wash., www.fireglass.com