Architect’s Newspaper – “A Feat of Climate-Responsive Efficiency”

September 03, 2020
Mc Donalds Global Flagship 18
Although Chica­go-based archi­tec­ture and urban design stu­dio Ross Bar­ney Archi­tects has com­plet­ed a wide breadth of projects over the near­ly 40-year his­to­ry of the firm in the Mid­west and beyond, it has also earned itself a niche rep­u­ta­tion as being a go-to design­er for superla­tive­ly sus­tain­able quick-ser­vice restau­rants — name­ly, McDonald’s.

The firm has now designed two restau­rants for the Chica­go-head­quar­tered fast-food behe­moth. While not a sub­stan­tial num­ber, the deep-green build­ings have gar­nered head­lines and helped to change the mind­set of what con­sumers think a fast food joint should look like…

While there are sim­i­lar­i­ties between both the Chica­go and Dis­ney World McDonald’s flag­ships, the lat­ter is its entire­ly own crea­ture par­tic­u­lar­ly with regard to how it responds to Orlando’s sub­trop­i­cal cli­mate. Enabling the build­ing to be nat­u­ral­ly ven­ti­lat­ed for a major­i­ty of the year are large, sen­sor-con­trolled glass jalousie win­dows that open and close auto­mat­i­cal­ly based on tem­per­a­ture and out­door humid­i­ty. Rough­ly 65 per­cent of the time, the build­ing can be cooled with­out air conditioning.

Enclosed by wood lou­vered walls and cooled by fans, the spa­cious out­door din­ing patio area is also a cli­mate-appro­pri­ate fea­ture of the build­ing. And con­sid­er­ing its loca­tion in the Sun­shine State, a near­ly 19,000 square foot pho­to­volta­ic pan­el-clad canopy soars out­wards from the building’s but­ter­fly roof. While the canopy incor­po­rates over 1,000 indi­vid­ual pan­els, the building’s glaz­ing incor­po­rates an addi­tion­al 4,809 square feet of inte­grat­ed pan­els. Even the park­ing lot’s 25 PV-equipped light fix­tures pro­duce more ener­gy than the super-effi­cient restau­rant uses accord­ing to the firm…” 

Read more at arch​pa​per​.com.

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