Margarido House

Open Views

Our opening glass walls remove the visual and physical barriers and expand your sense of space in any climate.

Optimum Ventilation

A large opening glass wall provides an easy way to quickly bring fresh air indoors for a healthier environment

Project Location

Oakland, CA



Case Study: Margarido House

The first leed-platinum home in California, Margarido House is striking both in its appearance and in its bold approach to green building. To achieve a high-performance thermal envelope, architects typically try to reduce the amount of glazed area, achieving as low a window-to-wall ratio as is possible. Yet Margarido House includes an extraordinary amount of glazed enclosure area, including a large NanaWall installation between the living room and the concrete deck overlooking panoramic mountain vistas.

Architects tend toward the low window-to-wall ratio for two major reasons. First, even high-performance triple-glazing and similar solutions rarely approach the U-values offered by opaque envelope materials. Second, high-U-value glazing can be undermined by fenestration elements without thermal breaks, which conduct heat across the plenum in spite of best intentions.

"NanaWall systems allow us to extend living space in our projects, by bringing the outdoors inside, and vice versa. Our homes 'live larger,'" McDonald boasts.

The Passive-Energy Approach to Design

Yet Mike McDonald, California Regional Manager for construction firm Ryan Associates, took on this challenge when he designed and built the home for his own use. McDonald was certain that a largely transparent home could be built green, without highly technical solutions. "I am a proponent of thinking about the project from a passive perspective," he says, adding that he focuses on strategies like natural daylighting, passive ventilation, durable nontoxic materials, and large overhangs for shading.

With natural daylight and ventilation in mind, McDonald specified NanaWall's SL60 Standard Thermally Broken Aluminum Framed Folding System for the opening to his patio. "The indoor/outdoor design element is particularly important in our more temperate climate in Northern California," he says, adding that other systems would have taken up space with large pockets for the sliding panels.

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Related Product

Folding Glass Walls