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Construction Defect Animation Demonstrates Glass Condominium’s “Greenhouse Effect”

A property development group built a new condominium high-rise in San Francisco. With an entire glass exterior, the building touted luxurious cityscape views for homeowners. Like many Bay Area residential units, the condos lacked air conditioning. However, the units also lacked proper insulation and ventilation, creating a greenhouse effect. As a result, temperate sunny days caused the interiors of some homes to heat as high as 90 degrees. These temperatures were not only uncomfortable, they were also dangerous for those with ailments, compromised immune systems, and the elderly. In addition, the stay-at-home orders of 2020 forced owners to be inside with no efficient way to cool down their homes.

The homeowners’ association reached out to Daniel Rottinghaus and Howard J. Silldorf of BERDING|WEIL, seeking help getting the developers to repair the defects. As Daniel and Howard investigated the building’s blueprints, they expected difficulty describing to lay audiences what was happening. As a result, they brought together DK Global and their team of architects and engineers to work in tandem and convey the building’s flaws with an animation.

“Prior to having that demonstrative, people had a really hard time wrapping their head around ‘why is this such a problem?’” explained BERDING|WEIL’s Director of Client Relations, Jill Jackson. “And then, being able to visualize it goes back to what I was saying about really feeling it and imagining yourself living in those conditions – you feel it a lot different when you’re seeing an illustration of it.”

The animation began with a timelapse of the building’s glass façade, showing sunlight enveloping the exterior early in the morning. By 12:30 PM, temperatures inside peaked at 92 degrees despite only being 65 degrees outside. Next, a lateral view of the wall’s components was illustrated and labeled. Then, a look at the units’ glass curtain walls and shadow boxes — the space between the exterior’s transparent glass and the opaque infill — showed how the cavity lacked insulation, causing the sun’s rays to heat the air pocket. Without insulation, the exposed aluminum sills and concrete slabs radiated heat, warmed inbound airflow, and significantly increased room temperatures well into the night.

With the animation identifying the building’s negligent design and lack of adequate insulation, Daniel and Howard were well-equipped to secure their clients a favorable resolution.

Daniel Rottinghaus has continuously been named a “Super Lawyer” for over ten years, representing commercial and residential real estate clients regarding construction defects. Daniel has served as a Special Task Force legal advisor for the U.S. State Department and as a Lead attorney for U.S. Army cases involving multi-billion-dollar Iranian claims, earning him the Department of State “Superior Honor Award” in 1993.

For nearly 30 years, Howard J. Silldorf has represented clients throughout Southern California, recovering more than $200 million for his clients in over 100 cases. Howard has earned the Martindale Hubbell Peer Review Rating of “AV Preeminent” for representing his clients in construction defect cases, a prestigious accomplishment attained by attorneys of the highest level of professional excellence.


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"The way using the DK Global technology gives us an advantage is: a lot of people in our industry haven't yet realized the power that it has. So, we know that we can bring the best results for our client based on using this advanced technology."
Jill Jackson - BERDING|WEIL




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Although the facts and outcomes presented in this email are intended to be true and accurate, they represent the reporting of a unique matter and do not imply or guarantee any type of result or outcome for matters in which DK Global is involved.
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