The Governor’s Residence in St. Paul, Minn., has stood for over 100 years and has served as home to more than 10 Minnesota governors.

The landmark home, which is located on Summit Avenue and sits along side iconic historical buildings such as the Cathedral of St. Paul and the former home of author F. Scott Fitzgerald, measures over 16,000 square feet and encompasses nine bedrooms and eight baths.

The mansion has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1974, but a recent state law mandating greater energy efficiency in government-owned buildings presented an interesting challenge for how to retrofit the home with energy-efficient features while still maintaining the home’s historic characteristics and architecture.


3M stepped in with a solution. The company created Thinsulate™ Climate Control Window Film technology, which adds an invisible layer of insulation when applied directly over existing windows. The company says that the thin film is almost as effective as an extra pane of glass. The film blocks the sun’s heat and protects a home from solar heat, visible light, and UV light, which can reduce a home’s energy efficiency and cause furniture and art to fade. The film increases the building envelope and keeps heat inside during the winter, reducing heat loss by up to 38% and utility bills by up to 10% in the process. As it's less expensive and time consuming than fully replacing windows, the film provides an easy and cost-effective way to increase energy-efficiency without hassle.


In the Governor’s Mansion, the team covered approximately 1,100 square feet of window glass in the residence with Thinsulate film.

“The window film reduces the heat loss and helps us maintain a comfortable environment,” says Amanda Simpson, the residence manager at the Minnesota Governor’s Mansion. “It also helps protect the furnishings in the house from exposure to the sun.”

Learn more about Thinsulate in this video from the company:

Interested in other window film technologies we've covered on BUILDER? Read more about the Zenith series ZR10 windows, a window film that generates power from the sun, and these glazing applications that reduce energy usage.

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