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Building Enclosure Archives - Morrison Hershfield

IIBEC Building Enclosure Symposium: Architectural Sheet Metal

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The IIBEC (formerly RCI, Inc.) Building Enclosure Symposium is a two-day educational program offering cutting-edge information regarding design, construction, maintenance and repair of modern and/or older building envelopes. This year’s event is headed to Kentucky, and we’re excited to join the program! The Symposium will take place on November 11-12, 2019 in Louisville.

Registration and more information here.

Session Overview: Architectural Sheet Metal – Lessons Learned by a Third-Generation Tradesman

Prior to becoming a building enclosure consultant, Russell Raymond spent 17 years working as an architectural sheet metal worker in Louisville, KY. During this time, significant detailed information was derived from other industry professionals, time at the bench, as well as significant field experience with snips and soldering irons in hand. This experience—coupled with the last ten years as a building enclosure consultant—have given the presenter unique and well-rounded architectural sheet metal experience. While many in the industry proclaim elevated levels of sheet metal expertise, it is apparent during design peer review of these assemblies and numerous sheet metal installations that the skills needed for proper design and installation are lacking. The purpose of this presentation is to share the presenter’s experience and pass on both time-tested design nuances and installation techniques that will enlighten the intermediate and advanced consultant.

This session will be presented by Russell Raymond, Senior Building Science Consultant, on Monday, November 11 at 8:30 am.

Facades+ Toronto: Building Envelope Design on the Path to Net Zero

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The Facades+ conference series is crossing the border! The first Facades+ conference in Canada will be held on Ocotber 11 in Toronto, and we’re excited for our local team to join the program! This full-day symposium will showcase presentations and panels focused on the evolution of facade technology and innovative, sustainable design practices.

More information and registration here.

Workshop Overview: Implications for Building Envelope Design on the path toward Net Zero Performance

The building envelope (cladding, glazing and roofing assemblies) is an integral part of the architectural expression of any buildings. In recent years the advent of computer simulations to assist in the structural design and manufacturing of building envelope assemblies has allowed for increasingly complex designs. However, in the past ten years, energy codes have significantly increased the energy performance as part of a trend towards high performance buildings. This has put increased emphasis on the role building envelope design plays in minimizing the energy required to operate buildings while still achieving the desired architectural design. At the same time, research and progress in the ability of computer simulations to analyze the performance of envelope assemblies have led to significant breakthroughs in the understanding of how these assemblies perform especially how thermal bringing affect their effectiveness. On the path towards net zero performance, the implications of the envelope performance is increasingly harder to ignore as the traditional trade off of efficiencies from the MEP systems can no longer account for the poor performance of the building envelope. Early design considerations of the effective performance of the building envelope is becoming crucial to the success of projects. This has led to the development of new design guides, tools and metrics to inform designers and assist them in making educated decisions on the design of the building envelope early in the design process to ensure performance expectations can be met while still achieving the desired architectural design.

Learning Objectives:

1. Review current Building Codes and the trend towards Net Zero Energy as they relate to building envelope design including new requirements to address thermal bridges.
2. Learn how the performance of the building envelope in terms of massing, orientation, glazing ratio, shading, air leakage and thermal bridging can impact performance.
3. Explore how new design guides, tools and metrics can assist with the design of envelope assemblies for high performance buildings
4. Apply the Building Envelope Thermal Bridging Guide methodology to account for the impact of the design envelope for a high performance commercial building.

This session will be presented by Anik Teasdale-St. Hilaire, Facade Specialist, and Neel Bavishi, Building Energy Consultant. This session is part of the afternoon in-depth workshops that will take place at 1:15 p.m.

CaGBC ASBS 2019: Thermal Bridging and Envelope Design

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The CaGBC Alberta Sustainable Building Symposium is back for it’s 22nd year! This year’s event will feature three days of educational courses and project tours, in the host city of Edmonton, on October 7-9, 2019. We’re excited to join the program!

More information and registration here.

Session Overview: Thermal Bridging and Envelope Design

This session will run through the new requirements for thermal bridging calculations and design options. We will discuss the new NECB requirements and compare common assemblies and their previous thermal performance against the new detailed calculation methodology. This leads to how much more heat loss is actually expected in buildings and how this affects sizing of systems along with energy code requirements.

While understanding how thermal bridging will affect the detailed design of envelopes it is important to have a practical understanding about the constructability of these details. The second half of the workshop will take attendees through examples as built of assemblies that have been constructed to mitigate thermal bridging.

This session will be co-presented by Grace Suri, Building Energy Consultant, and Julien St. Pierre, Building Science Engineer. It will take place at 12:30 pm on Monday, October 7.

Facades+AM Minneapolis: Northern Enclosure

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Facades+ is bringing it’s AM series to Minneapolis! This half day event features three sessions covering facade and building science issues and innovations unique to the region. It will take place at the Hilton Minneapolis on Wednesday, July 24, 2019.

More information on conference sessions and registration here.

Stéphane Hoffman, Senior Building Science Specialist, will participate on the panel Northern Enclosure: Climate-Driven Strategies for High-Performing Facades.

Session Overview:

The growing demand for high-performance enclosure systems is a driving force for innovative facade solutions. Through the data-driven investigation of geography, materials, and energy usage, these leading building science practitioners guide projects towards sustainable solutions.

URM Seismic Resilience Symposium: Assessing the Impact of Insulating History Masonry Structures

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Unreinforced Masonry (URM) buildings present a challenge for earthquake-prone communities. This three-day AIA Oregon event will include lectures focusing on concerns related to URM buildings, including earthquake background, seismic upgrades, building codes and historic preservation requirements. It will take place July 18-20 at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon.

More information here.

Session Overview: Assessing the Impact of Insulating History Masonry Structures

When rehabilitating historic masonry walls, the question of insulating them is often raised. Whether to reduce energy consumption or to improve occupant comfort, insulating masonry is often perceived as beneficial yet it comes with potential pitfalls in terms of the long-term durability of the masonry. A quick review of 3D thermal analysis will provide better understanding of the real impact insulating masonry wall has on overall thermal performance of the building envelope. Hygrothermal and freeze-thaw potential analysis will provide insight of the factors to be considered when assessing the potential impact of insulating the masonry in terms of material durability. Case studies of mass and transitional (masonry encasing the steel structure) masonry buildings, undergoing building envelope retrofit are presented.

Stéphane Hoffman, Principal / Vice President, and Ivan Lee, Building Science Consultant, will co-present this session on Thursday, July 18.

Facade Tectonics Forum Seattle: Digits, Data and Beyond – Integrated Parametric Workflows in Advanced Facade Design and Execution

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The Facade Tectonics FORUM series is coming to Seattle! This full-day seminar features four sessions focusing on advancements in performance and trends within the facade industry, as well as the facade effect on buildings and urban habitat. The FORUM will take place on Tuesday, July 16 at the University of Washington.

More information here.

Session Overview – Digits, Data and Beyond: Integrated Parametric Workflows in Advanced Facade Design and Execution

Digital tools and processes are playing a disruptive role in the AEC industry, as they have in many markets. Yet the seamless integration of parametric workflows throughout the building process remains a challenge. Where are the gaps and what can be done to bridge them? Unanswered questions of ownership, responsibility, risk and liability (who owns the data/model, etc.) throttle progress and the promise of data analysis and optimization on the building process. Practice leaders in this session explore the current state of the art of digital workflows, the integration of the facade system in those workflows, what is working and not, where lie the opportunities and threats, and finally, pull out the crystal ball to discuss where it is all heading.

Stéphane Hoffman, Principal / VP, and Maurya McClintock (McClintock Facade Consulting) will join this session. It will begin at 8:45 am.

ASHRAE 2019 Annual Conference: BECx – Modern Unitized Curtain Wall and Fenestration Systems

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The ASHRAE Annual Conference brings together engineering professionals for five days of education sessions and technical presentations, aimed at addressing challenges of adapting design to constantly changing criteria, offer best practices, lessons learned, and innovative strategies. This year’s conference will be held in Kansas City, Missouri on June 22 to 26, 2016.

More information here.

Session Overview: BECx – Modern Unitized Curtain Wall and Fenestration Systems

Building Envelope (or Enclosure) Commissioning (BECx) is a quality focus process gaining popularity in the North American construction industry. It borrows considerably from the more traditional electrical and mechanical commissioning, but with a few distinct differences. Much of the activities required for a successful Building Envelope Commissioning are directly tied to aspects of envelope construction such as pre-construction activities & decisions such as system selection, certified and experience teams of contractors and workers, design review & shop drawing review, performance mock-up construction and laboratory testing, execution in the field, and compliance testing to confirm project requirements are met.

Panelized or prefabricated construction offers some unique benefits and challenges to building construction. To many people, the idea of prefabricated or panelized construction sparks visions of “cookie cutter” buildings that lack architectural interest or sophistication. This no longer defines prefabricated or panelized construction. Unitized fenestration, such as curtain wall systems, are a type of panelized construction that have been used for many years, and are often not looked upon as being prefabricated. In reality unitized curtain wall systems and other panelized fenestration can form the entire building envelope system and share many of the same challenges and benefits as any panelized wall system.

A properly executed Quality Assurance program, including review by third party consultants during production of the unitized curtain wall panels, can be an important tool to provide transparency and traceability of many of the requirements necessary for a successful BECx outcome. This presentation will demonstrate how the process for design, production and installation of unitized curtain wall systems falls within the scope of the BECx process and will include examples of shop drawing review, lab and field mock-ups with testing, and plant review.

This session will be presented by Peter Adams, Senior Building Science Consultant.

ZEBx+BCIT Communities of Practice: High-Rise & Commercial High-Performance Walls

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The Vancouver Zero Emissions Building Centre of Excellence (ZEBx) and British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) are launching a new program series, Communities of Practice, and we’re excited to be part of it!

Communities of Practice provides a forum for industry professionals to meet experts, discuss net-zero energy products, systems and details, and get answers to pressing questions.

This month’s Communities of Practice event will be held at BCIT’s High Performance Building Lab. Get an up-close look at the next generation of net-zero or net-zero ready high rise wall assemblies through full size mock-ups. Details include parapet, clear wall, window, slab and door systems that are applicable to all climate zones in Canada. This event builds off the overwhelming enthusiasm expressed from over 300 viewers during last month’s BC Housing Webinar, presented in partnership with ZEBx, BCIT, Flynn Canada, Morrison Hershfield, and Passive House Canada.

Patrick Roppel, Principal/Building Science Specialist, will highlight various design details and systems used to achieve a high-performance level.

CaGBC Building Lasting Change 2019: 4 Presentations

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CaGBC’s annual conference brings together three days of opportunities, education and networking with the leaders, change makers and innovators of Canada’s green building industry – and our team is presenting three sessions!  This year’s conference will take place May 28-30 at the Vancouver Convention Centre.

More information and registration here.

Session #1: Healthy Buildings for Everyone

The way buildings are built today has remained relatively unchanged for nearly 200 years. The $9 trillion a year global construction industry is responsible for nearly 60% of climate change emissions, a third of landfill waste and a shocking array of negative health effects. In 2016, the XPRIZE Foundation set out to establish a “moonshot” for construction by creating the XPRIZE for Healthy Buildings.  Learn how one team approached this unique opportunity to develop a way to (literally) grow buildings by fusing synthetic biology, genomics, parametric modeling and 3D printing to create a disruption and paradigm shift that could switch us from a PETRO-chemical world, to a BIO-chemical one.

This session will be presented by Eric Corey Freed, Sustainability Disruptor, and will take place on Wednesday, May 29 at 9:45 am.

Session #2: Walking the Walk – A roadmap for low carbon neutrality in existing buildings 

In response to The Greening Government Strategy and their commitment to achieving a carbon neutral portfolio by 2050, with a stretch goal of carbon neutrality by 2030, Public Service and Procurement Canada (PSPC) have developed guidelines for the evaluation and recommendation of projects which have an impact on the GHG emissions associated with their real-estate portfolio. Through this guideline, PSPC have established that carbon neutrality will be measured and reported at the portfolio level. The intention of this engaging panel discussion is to capture the broad process laid out by BGIS on behalf of PSPC and the challenges and risks inherent to an aggressive carbon reduction target. Furthermore, the aim of this panel is to lay out the competing priorities faced by Morrison Hershfield’s consulting team such as energy/GHG reduction targets, capital and maintenance cost plans, operations and replacement cycles, technical feasibility, impact on schedule as well as short/long-term federal priorities. With the input from various stakeholders in the Carbon Neutral Study (CNS) process, the panel intends to dissect the integrated design process (IDP) implemented by the multi-disciplinary consultant team of specialists in the areas of building envelope design, mechanical, electrical, controls, calibration energy simulation, broader sustainability and resiliency, lifecycle cost assessment (LCCA), and a broad stakeholder engagement process via workshop facilitation. The panel will introduce specific project examples from various geographical regions to facilitation discussion and engage the audience in analyzing various energy efficiency and carbon mitigation measures already implemented through this CNS process.

This session will be co-presented by Kalum Galle, Sustainability Specialist, and will take place on Wednesday, May 29 at 9:45 am.

Session #3: Retrofit to the max – Elite performance is not just for new builds

Achieving certification to Zero Carbon Building Standard or Passive House can seem like a daunting task, particularly on a retrofit project. The relative impact of thermal bridging and envelope transitions is amplified in low energy buildings and particularly challenging to resolve in retrofit conditions. Humber College’s Deep Energy Retrofit Project for the Nx Building surmounted these challenges through careful integration across architectural design, energy modelling, envelope design, and mechanical design. Construction phase challenges were also met by implementing a robust testing protocol to facilitate EnerPhit and Zero Carbon Building certification.

This session will be co-presented by Steve Murray, Senior Building Science Consultant, and will take place on Thursday, May 30 at 9 am.

Session #4: TEDI

TEDI is a new metric that is gaining traction throughout codes and standards across Canada.  However, some argue that a low TEDI design can be in conflict with low-carbon energy supply solutions and/or cost-effective zero-carbon buildings. This presentation will challenge participants to rethink building design in a low-TEDI world using case studies.  The notion that high load buildings are justified by of the availability of large quantities of waste heat or low carbon energy supply is contrary to the foundational principles of low-energy design.  Transformational design opportunities emerge when buildings are designed for low TEDI, which can support and enhance cost-effective and resilient low carbon supply solutions.

This session will be co-presented by Alex Blue, Building Energy Practice Lead, and MH-alum Christian Cianfrone, current Executive Director of Vancouver’s Zero Emissions Building Exchange (ZEBx). The time for this session has not yet been determined.

OAA Conference 2019: 4 Presentations

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The Ontario Association of Architects (OAA) Annual Conference is making it’s way to Quebec! This year’s OAA Conference theme is “Empowering Change,” sessions will explore how architecture can help to solve problems from climate change to housing affordability to social cohesion.

Our team will be presenting four sessions at this year’s conference!

More information and registration here.

Session #1: QA, QC, and QF – An Alphabet Soup of Standards is not Enough

Global procurement is often relied upon for curtain wall, window wall and other fenestration systems and components. Global procurement has its opportunities and risks. Opportunities include reduced product cost and fabrication capabilities that are not available, or have only limited availability in North America such as jumbo-size low-emissivity coated glass and insulating glass units. Risks include language and cultural differences and long distance communication across many time zones causing confusion in design, ordering, delays in delivery, and problems with product quality. Nevertheless, the fiscal advantages can be considerable.

Ensuring acceptable quality off-shore products is not just a matter of writing into a specification a requirement to comply with applicable building codes, standards and industry practice documents. These technical documents contain surprising limitations and omissions so that despite best efforts, a Quality Assurance (QA) plan and Quality Control (QC) program may not achieve the desired quality outcome. Even if initial product quality samples and production are correct, quality may diminish over time, an effect known as Quality Fade (QF). Whether or not fenestration systems are globally or locally procured, the building owners, the design team and the construction team should be aware of omissions and limitations of industry practices and standards to avoid unexpected surprises too late in the construction process to make changes.

This session will be presented by George Torok, Senior Facade Specialist, and will take place on Wednesday, May 22 at 2 pm and on Thursday, May 23 at 10:30 am.

Session #2: Change of Use – Application of the Ontario Building Code

This session walks attendees through the fundamentals and requirements of the Ontario Building Code for changes of use to existing buildings. It focuses on three key areas: application (i.e. when is the Code applicable?), requirements (i.e. the process of determining what requirements apply to a change of use) and working through examples and applying tips and tricks to make the process easier.

Learning Objectives

  1. Understand what constitutes a change of use per the OBC.
  2. Know the basis of Code requirements from the Building Code Act.
  3. Be able to assess hazard index and construction index of existing and proposed construction.
  4. Apply the requirements for analyzing early warning and evacuation systems.

This session will be presented by Judy Jeske, Senior Code Specialist, and will take place on Wednesday, May 22 at 2 pm.

Session #3: Building Envelope Commissioning – Plan for Success

This presentation focuses on the importance of the building envelope for new and retrofit projects, and its ability to satisfy not only the expectations of an owner, but also meet the performance requirements for efficiency, resiliency and durability. The session includes discussion on the critical and various stages of the Building Envelope Commissioning (BECx) Process, starting with the overarching Owner’s Project Requirements (OPRs) and finishing with the Building Envelope Retro-Commissioning Plan. Components of the process will be illustrated with examples from various case studies across Ontario and Canada.

Learning Objectives

  1. Understand the importance of the building envelope in new construction and retrofit applications.
  2. Understand Owner’s Project Requirements and Performance Criteria.
  3. Become familiar with the various stages of the BECx process and be able to identify the critical steps for its implementation.
  4. Be able to connect the BECx process to real work applications through case studies, and see first-hand how the process relates to a modern construction process.

This session will be presented by Peter Adams, Senior Building Science Specialist, and will take place on Wednesday, May 22 at 4 pm.

Session #4: Net Zero Carbon and Passive House – Easier Than You Think

Stringent overall performance requirements are compounded by component-specific or assembly-specific criteria. In addition,  design solutions often require careful integration between the architectural design, energy modelling, envelope design and mechanical design.

The relative impact of thermal bridging and envelope transitions is amplified in low energy buildings. Accurately quantifying thermal bridging effects and finding innovative design improvements to key details is an essential part of Passive House certification.

The presentation will discuss the counter-intuitive mechanical design challenges arising from very low heating and cooling loads and the year-round challenge of simultaneous heating and cooling needs within a floor plate. The different control logic and operating schedules of low energy systems must be carefully coordinated with energy modellers to ensure an accurate model.

This session will be co-presented by Steve Murray, Senior Building Science Consultant, and Alejandro Ortega, Senior Mechanical Engineer, and will take place on Friday, May 24 at 8:30 am.