Glass railing systems are used in a variety of residential and commercial settings for safety and the beauty
glass adds to a structure. Laminated glass is the ideal glazing material for this application and offers a
variety of design options. The interlayer can be clear, tinted, or custom printed. The glass can be clear,
tinted or decorative; flat or curved; fully supported on 1, 2, 3, or 4 edges; or minimally supported with
bolts and/or clamps. Laminated glass offers a benefit over monolithic tempered glass when used in
railings; if breakage occurs, glass particles tend to adhere to the laminate interlayer increasing the
likelihood of glass retention in the system.
Interior glass railings create an open feeling on the inside of a large space and enhance visibility and
daylighting. These railing systems may be used in spaces such as, but not limited to, shopping centers,
hotels, office buildings, restaurants and hospitals. Laminated glass railing systems can also be installed in
exterior applications, such as balconies in apartments, hotels, and condominiums. Laminated glass
provides improved resistance to glass fallout in the event of breakage. If the laminate edge is not covered,
additional consideration should be given to the interlayer type and glazing system design.
Laminated glass railing systems provide a clear barrier in many sports venues around the world. While a
top rail is still required by code, in some instances the metal top cap and handrail have been eliminated,
with approval of the building official, to afford spectators an unobstructed view onto the playing field.
This is discussed in further detail in the Building Code Requirements section below with regards to code