Chris Bagatelos on the BAGS production floor
Chris Bagatelos, CEO and co-founder of Bagatelos Architectural Glass Systems, showing off aluminum frames that will make up part of Aggie Square’s glass curtain walls. Picture taken on the production floor at BAGS’ headquarters.

Local Glass Vendor Puts a Shine on Aggie Square

Local company Bagatelos Architectural Glass Systems, or BAGS, is building the shining glass face of Aggie Square’s Lifelong Learning and Life Science Technology and Engineering East buildings. Founded in Sacramento in 1998, BAGS has become an industry leader in the design, engineering, manufacture and installation of exterior architectural glass walls. They are responsible for iconic regional projects like the Ziggurat and Golden One Center. 

BAGS has been working closely with Whiting-Turner, Aggie Square’s general contractor, to help bring Aggie Square to life.

Scaffolding for an Aggie Square building
Test glass installed in the Life Science Technology and Engineering East Building by Bagatelos Architectural Glass Systems and Whiting-Turner.

Shawn Cooper, Vice President at Whiting-Turner, had high praise for BAGS’ enthusiastic involvement in the early design and budgeting of Aggie Square’s glass curtain walls, which will make up the face of the first two buildings currently under construction.

“[BAGS goes] above and beyond to provide more than just a building, but an experience that’s a pleasure for the developer and the end user,” Cooper praised. 

Chris Bagatelos, BAGS’ co-founder, CEO, and a lifetime Sacramentan, has been in the glass industry for over thirty-five years.

“I worked in the glass business on summer jobs, through childhood, through high school, always doing tasks . . . I’ve got the scars to prove it,” Bagatelos said, pointing to a scar on his hand.

Since founding BAGS in 1998 with his brother Nick, the company has expanded to four offices across California. However, Sacramento remains their headquarters.

On a tour of the production floor located right next to his office, Bagatelos enthusiastically explained the skilled work they do at BAGS. Their team members design, engineer, and assemble the aluminum frames, size and insert the glass, hand-pump the silicone sealant and install every unit themselves. Their complete vertical integration results in exceptional quality and performance.

Aggie Square Rendering
Image of the large Aggie Square plaza connecting glass faced-buildings to create a hub that will feature spaces to present, perform and gather.

We have designers, we have engineers, we have architects on our staff. We do all of the design engineering and manufacturing of the product that we install,” Bagatelos said. So, we take it from start to finish, which is somewhat unique for our industry.”

Bagatelos explained that competitors for projects like Aggie Square are national and international companies.

With its headquarters 2 miles from the job site, BAGS’ involvement as an Aggie Square subcontractor is supporting a local, skilled workforce.

“52 people are making their paycheck every week as a result of this project. So how awesome is that?” Bagatelos enthusiastically shared. Of the 52 workers putting together Aggie Square’s glass curtains, 38 live just 10 miles from the job site.

Cooper and Bagatelos are both looking to make Sacramento a better place.

“There are so many people putting time and talent and treasure into this building that’s not always noticed,” Cooper emphasized as he described the incredible amount of coordination and collaboration it’s taken to get Aggie Square where it is today. He said it was important to recognize people from every level of the project. 

Aggie Square Rendering
Rendering of another view of Aggie Square plaza

“We can see [the construction site] from our second-floor offices,” Bagatelos commented. Bagatelos himself lives nearby and often visits the site while walking his dog. “It’s a long process, but in the end, it’s going to be a beautiful building. Really exciting to be a part of this. And I’m excited for Sacramento and, [honestly], for my neighborhood.”

BAGS’ glass curtain walls will start going up in March. However, you can see a preview of their work with the test glass that was erected in early February.

We plan to release an article in April with more details on how Aggie Square’s glass curtain walls are manufactured.

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