When designing, architects are responding to and creating a relationship between identity, culture and architectural style. This book discusses whether the extent of the use of glass facades has increased, or indeed enhanced, the creation of meaningful place-making, thereby creating a cultural identity of 'place'. Looking at the development of perceptions of glass facades in different cultures, it shows how modernist 'glass' buildings are perceived as an expression of technical achievement, as symbols of global economic success and as setting a neutral platform for multi-cultural societies - all of which are difficult for urban developers and policy makers to resist in our era of globalization. Drawing on a number of modern and heritage design projects from Europe, the USA, the Middle East and South East Asia, the book reviews efforts of some regional towns and local places to move up the economic ladder by adopting a more 'global' aesthetic.
’All over the world, glass is the most discussed and innovative facade material and element of the urban fabric. This book provides a unique overview of glass architecture in its historic, cultural, environmental, technological and philosophical contexts. Including key facts and very good references, this book is essential reading for anyone who wants knowledge or is curious about architectural glass.’ Kerstin Barup, Lund University, Sweden ’The principal focus of this book is to explore the use of the glass faÃ§ade to understand some of the social and political forces which influence our understanding of architecture. This book will be of value to those who have an interest in shaping the built environment.’ John Wiltshire, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, UK