Construction Olympics: Glazing on a Beam 60 Feet in the Air

Posted on August 11, 2016, by
Setting glass lites using a power grip and tower crane

Empirehouse Glaziers Eddie Love (left) and Brandon Schindele (right) balanced on a beam 60 feet above ground while tethered with fall protection to safely install 300-pound glass lites using a tower crane at the Aurora on France project.

“Coordinating the crown glass framing and installation on the sixth floor roof top was the most challenging aspect of the Aurora on France project,” said Empirehouse Project Manager Jason Weld.

There was a collaborative effort between Adolfson & Peterson Construction General Contractor and Empirehouse Team members, Safety & Quality Manager, Glazing Foremen, the Project Manager, and the Field Superintendent to tackle the crown glass installation. That’s when a task-specific quality plan was implemented.

Foreman Mitch Schindele was assigned to lead the crown glass installation using the tower crane. Everyone worked through the changes quickly and adapted well. “Eighty glass lites weighing as much as 300 lbs. would have been impossible to install by hand,” said Field Superintendent Trent Johnson.

“Using the tower crane on site made it three times faster to install the heavy glass units than by using a mobile crane.” —Trent Johnson, Empirehouse Field Superintendent

In order to install the crown glass units, the tower crane was utilized to hoist the pallets of glass lites to the fifth floor. Then from the fifth floor, each glass lite was attached to a power cup and transported to the top of the crown on the sixth floor to be installed by two glaziers. In total, approximately 1,805 linear feet of canopy glass was installed at the sixth floor roof top crown.

Video: Setting Canopy Glass using a Power Grip and Tower Crane

transporting the glass lite using the power grip and tower crane
Empirehouse Foreman Mitch Schindele sets each glass lite onto the power grip and directs the crane operator at the Aurora job site to fly it over to the glaziers at the crown.

Empirehouse Field Superintendent and Glazier

Field Superintendent Dave Johnson (left) with glazier Howard Westly (left) discussing the morning’s work (and something about fishing).


Industrial Worker Kody Murphy preps the metal mouldings that will be attached to the glass lites.


Apprentice glazier Joel Thorson, equipped with fall protection, balances on the steel beam 60-feet above the ground while prepping the glass for the metal mouldings.


The huge tower crane at the Aurora job site helped the Empirehouse glaziers install the crown glass in hours versus days if they were to do it by hand.


Empirehouse was awarded the Architectural Glass and Metal contract by Adolfson & Peterson Construction and work with Edward Farr Architects on the Aurora on France Senior Living project.

The glass and fabrication scope:

  • Over 13,000 square feet of exterior aluminum storefront systems glazed with tinted high performance coated insulated glass
  • 1,805 linear feet of canopy glass is comprised of a top and bottom layer of 3/8” clear velour with two inside layers of .030 sentry glass translucent white
  • 233 square feet of 1.75″ x 4.5″ non-thermal flush glazed interior aluminum storefront framing system glazed with 1/4″ clear uncoated monlithic glass


“Street closures made the skyway installation go smoothly when the field team installed the custom aluminum frames, glass lights and fin applications,” said Field Superintendent Trent Johnson.

For your next project, trust a Certified NACC Architectural Glass and Metal Contractor for quality results. Call Empirehouse at 763-535-1150 or contact us.

Photo Gallery: (Click to enlarge)


Photography, video and written by Jennifer Klitzke, Marketing Communications Specialist. For more information about Empirehouse, contact