Vibrant Bendheim Glass Signals Airport Accessibility for Kansas City
Z-KISS concealed attachment system adds color to terminal with ease
The new single terminal at Kansas City International—representing the largest infrastructure project in the region’s history–opened in February 2023. From the beginning of the design process, meetings with the city’s taxpayers identified a streamlined experience for travelers as a high priority, with an emphasis on comfort and dignity for all. In 2018, the Mayor and City Council of Kansas City, Mo., specifically directed lead architects at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill to create “the most accessible airport in the world.”
One reflection of this aim was the terminal’s restroom design. In addition to traditional male-only and female-only spaces, generous provision was made for gender-neutral facilities, easing travel for families with young children and cutting long wait times for female passengers. These options are coded with color as well as signage to direct travelers appropriately: blue for men, yellow for women, and green for gender-neutral rooms.
We provided the vibrant back-painted etched glass used to execute this vision, as well as the patent-pending Z-KISS concealed attachment system. With over 10,000 square feet of glass provided, Kansas City International represents our largest Z-KISS installation to date.
A fully-engineered alternative to traditional Z-clip fastening systems, Z-KISS requires fewer horizontal hanging brackets while providing reliable mechanical support for the dead load of glass. Designed to create a frameless aesthetic for opaque glass, Z-KISS can be used with a wide range of glass choices, including back-painted, mirrored, or digitally printed varieties. The glass is delivered with the hardware preinstalled, ready for installation, and accompanied by shop drawings and layout drawings provided by Bendheim.
In addition to back-painted glass for the restrooms, we also provided etched laminated mirrored glass from our Titanium™ line to frame the new terminal’s elevators in a warm cinnamon shade. While emphasizing access and inclusivity, project architects also bore in mind the terminal’s prominence as a brand new welcome center for Kansas City. With high-profile events such as the 2026 FIFA World Cup in the airport’s near future, a world-class feeling for its interior spaces was essential. With its etched surface, the delicate mirror effect of Titanium glass becomes beautifully subtle, with the gentlest of diffused reflections.
“Our design capabilities and the breadth of our product offerings give us wonderful opportunities to support the visions of our architect partners,” said Said Elieh, Bendheim’s Vice President for Sales and Innovation. “Ease of installation is a high priority for us too, since it’s our job to make the beauty of these special glasses a practical choice. We’re extremely proud of our contributions to Kansas City’s next-generation airport, and we greatly respect their commitment to safe and comfortable travels for everyone.”
Bendheim is one of the world’s foremost resources for specialty architectural glass. Founded in New York City in 1927, the fourth-generation, family-owned company offers a virtually unlimited range of in-stock and custom architectural glass varieties. Bendheim develops, fabricates, and distributes its products worldwide. The company maintains production facilities in New Jersey and an extensive showroom in New York City