Bulletproof Glass Systems

The Cost of a Bullet-Resistant Glass System

Bulletproof Products

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Before buying a big-ticket item, most of us take a few minutes to do a little Googling and get a sense of the price landscape. This is easy to do with ovens and cars, but hard with bullet-resistant glass systems—largely because these systems are customized, and their costs can vary widely.

The Minimal Bullet Proof Glass System

On one end of the spectrum is a minimal, straight-forward system—something suitable for a stand-alone ticket window, small retail setting, or after-hours transactions. Such a system would include a bullet-resistant glass transaction window with an integrated communication system and cash tray, ballistic fiberglass to reinforce the surrounding walls, and perhaps a simple, all-steel bullet-resistant door and frame. These ship as pre-fabricated, built-to-order components that will need to be installed on-site. Such installation work can often be done by local contractors, although most bulletproof companies will send their own installation team for an additional fee.

Including shipping and handling, this sort of minimal system will cost at least $7,000 to $10,000 (not including installation).


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A Mid-Range Bullet Resistant Barrier System

More comprehensive barrier systems—like those used in retail or banking—demand a greater degree of customization. For example, consider a 24-hour gas station—the sort of “truck-stop oasis” that tends to include a well-stocked convenience store. These retailers usually have at least two registers and need to worry about both exterior and interior bullet resistant glass.

The cost of such a system can vary widely, depending on the sorts of materials their security needs demand, and the degree of flexibility they’d like in their system. At a minimum, each register needs to be enclosed in a bulletproof glass booth, with ballistic fiberglass reinforcing the counters and deep steel deal trays integrated into the countertops. Each hardened point-of-payment will be accessible through a bulletproof door. The business owners may choose to use an electronic keypad/buzz-through access system, as this mitigates the risks that come with trying to keep track of physical keys.

Most gas stations and convenience stores favor natural voice communication, rather than electronic intercoms (at least for interior applications). Many also elect to install “sliders.” These windows can be opened during low-crime, high-traffic periods and then locked-down after the sun sets or in an emergency.

All told, a mid-range system (such as this theoretical truck stop, a small bank branch, or a corner store) is going to run around $15,000 to $25,000.

A High-End Bullet Resistant Glass System

Obviously, bullet-resistant glass systems and security can go well beyond what you see at the bank or ticket counter. For example, many government buildings have high-level forced entry-rated blast and bullet resistant glass reinforcing every exterior window and ballistic fiberglass in every interior and exterior wall. Some corporate entryways are entirely constructed of bulletproof glass and framing; their pleasant vestibules are actually man traps ready to lockdown at the push of a button. Systems like these—often entirely invisible to the casual observer—start at $30,000 and move into the hundreds of thousand dollars from there.

But that isn’t to say that every bullet-resistant barrier for a corporate or municipal building is going to cost tens of thousands of dollars. Most of these settings also have more narrow applications (a single lobby that is open for late hours, a transaction window for paying utility bills) that fall into the Minimal and Mid-Range categories.

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