Baltimore, MD

National Aquarium Rainforest and Australia Exhibits


Complementing the National Aquarium’s many aquatic displays, the Tropical Rainforest and Australia: Wild Extremes exhibits are popular with visitors. These large, mechanically controlled, humidified spaces are enclosed with curtain wall and sloped glazing assemblies. SGH investigated the condition of these enclosures and helped the aquarium plan for future improvements.

SGH investigated water infiltration and deterioration of the curtain wall and sloped glazing assemblies at the Tropical Rainforest area. The aquarium wanted to evaluate the feasibility of reusing the existing framing, replacing existing insulated glass units with new glazing, and improving the system’s water management and thermal performance, while providing the necessary light transmission for the plants and animals.

We also investigated water infiltration and glass breakage at the curtain wall and sloped glazing assemblies enclosing the Australia exhibit. The aquarium wanted to hear options for addressing leakage and stopping falling snow and ice from damaging the glass at the low end of the roof.

At both areas, SGH reviewed building drawings, performed interior and exterior surveys, and made observations at exploratory openings in the fenestration to allow us to observe the configuration and document the condition. We provided options for repairing and retrofitting the enclosures to meet the aquarium’s performance expectations. Our rehabilitation options also included options for reusing and replacing various systems.

Project Summary



Completion Date
Failure Investigation
Building Enclosures
Culture & Entertainment
National Aquarium in Baltimore
Specialized Capabilities
Condition Assessments | Facades & Glazing

Key team members

Joseph  Rogers
Joseph Rogers