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building science Archives - Morrison Hershfield

Facades+ Seattle: Optimizing Residential Design – Pursuing a Housing Model for the Seattle Area

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The Facades+ series is back in Seattle! This year’s Seattle program includes three morning sessions covering issues unique to the Puget Sound, as well as in-depth afternoon workshops. The event will take place on Friday, December 6 at the Motif in downtown Seattle.

More information and registration here.

Session Overview: Optimizing Residential Design – Pursuing a Housing Model for the Seattle Area

Over the last decade, Su Development and Bohlin Cywinski Jackson have collaborated on a series of residential towers in Bellevue, Washington. What renders the projects so unique is the vertically integrated approach established by Su Development; the development firm, founded by engineer John Su, designs and fabricates its own custom facade systems. This panel will explore both the relationship between the stakeholders of the projects, and present a dive into the customized window wall modules of the towers.

Stéphane Hoffman, Vice President & Senior Building Science Specialist, will participate in this panel session at 10:10 am.

AIBC Professional Development Series: Precast Sandwich Panels – Resilient Building Enclosures

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The Architectural Institute of British Columbia’s (AIBC) Fall Professional Development Series is back, and we’re excited to participate! This year’s sessions will focus on innovative architectural case studies.

More information and registration here.

Session Overview: Precast Sandwich Panels: Resilient Building Enclosures

Simon Fraser University’s new Sustainable Energy and Engineering building is a state-of-the-art post-secondary facility at the Surrey campus. The landmark building is a five-storey structure of approximately 20,450 m2, purpose-built to house the new Sustainable Energy and Engineering program. The building façade features alternating strips of white precast sandwich panels and glazing, resembling a geometric pattern of electrical circuit boards. The project’s fast-track delivery requirements necessitated the use of prefabricated precast building components for the façade to not only allow the building to meet tight government funding deadlines, but also provide a high performance and sustainable building with reduced maintenance to meet SFU’s facility requirements.

This presentation provides an overview of precast panel assembly and its advantages and disadvantages over poured-in-place concrete wall. Design and construction challenges and solutions implemented will be discussed.

This session will be co-presented by Building Science Consultants Harold Louwerse and Loveleen Atwal.

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.

BCBEC Conference & AGM: Insulated Precast Panels – Resilient Building Enclosures + Mass Timber on the Path Toward Zero Carbon Emissions

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BC BEC’s Conference & Annual General Meeting (AGM) is back! This full-day symposium provides a platform for industry dialogue on the challenges of building higher, faster and more cost-effectively, while adapting to changes in the building envelope industry. BCBEC’s AGM will take place on Friday, November 8 in Vancouver, BC.

More information and registration here.

Session Overview: SFU’s New Engineering Building: A case study of durability and resiliency using insulated precast concrete panels

Simon Fraser University’s new Sustainable Energy and Engineering building is a state-of-the-art post-secondary facility at the Surrey campus. The landmark building is a five-storey structure of approximately 20,450 m2, purpose-built to house the new Sustainable Energy and Engineering program. The building façade features alternating strips of white precast sandwich panels and glazing, resembling a geometric pattern of electrical circuit boards. The project’s fast-track delivery requirements necessitated the use of prefabricated precast building components for the façade to not only allow the building to meet tight government funding deadlines, but also provide a high performance and sustainable building with reduced maintenance to meet SFU’s facility requirements.

This presentation provides an overview of precast panel assembly and its advantages and disadvantages over poured-in-place concrete wall. Design and construction challenges and solutions implemented will be discussed.

This session will be presented by Building Science Consultant Harold Louwerse.

 

Session Overview: Mass Timber for Building Envelope Performance on the Path Towards Zero Carbon Emissions

The building envelope is an integral part of architectural expression and is quickly becoming the innovative system utilized to realize carbon emission reduction goals. More and more the building envelope’s roofing, glazing, and waterproofing assemblies include Mass Timber. These assemblies are critical for ensuring durability but challenged to increase envelope performance without creating environmental barrier deficiencies.

On the path towards Zero Carbon Emissions, the implications of building envelope performance are increasingly harder to ignore, as the traditional trade off of efficiencies from the MEP systems can no longer account for the poor envelope performance. Instead, the full potential of each is needed to leverage increased carbon offsets. Mass Timber is carbon sequestering, rather than carbon intensive, and capable of replacing steel and concrete as a buildings structural frame and enclosure. Mass Timber is also far less conductive than concrete or steel, pivotal for reducing thermal bridging.

New simulation models have derived in part from the increased pressure energy codes place on envelope performance, as well as from the advances in research and increased capability of computer simulations to analyze envelope assemblies. Mass Timber’s inherent level of precision is a compelling reason for furthering digital innovation by combining simulation data with 3D digital fabrication. Structural, manufacturing, and prefabrication designers can employ new digital tools to visualize and explore innovative structural connections while ensuring strategic integration with the building structure and the major MEP building systems.

Mass Timber digital design is becoming the solution for proving constructability, predictability of schedule, and sustainability while delivering an ideal process and data necessary for compiling a comprehensive Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). Ultimately, LCA confirms the potential for achieving zero carbon emissions when building with Mass Timber, while building with wood provides a renewed capacity for architectural aesthetic expression and envelope performance.

This session will be presented by Eric Wood, Mass Timber/Facade Specialist.

2019 BUILDEX Alberta: The Resilience Factor and the Future of Green Buildings

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This two-day BUILDEX event is Alberta’s largest Conference and Tradeshow! BUILDEX brings together professional communities to learn, network and explore the latest industry trends and innovations. This year’s conference will take place on November 6 and 7, 2019 at the BMO Centre in Calgary.

More information and registration here.

 

Session Overview: CaGBC Green Leaders Breakfast: The Resilience Factor and the Future of Green Buildings

Our building systems are increasingly impacted by weather events, changing markets, escalating costs, and social and political will – prompting the need to revaluate how we design, construct, and use buildings to endure and meet our needs. Our panelists will present varied perspectives on resiliency in the built environment and discuss how we need to rethink our approach to the built environment. They represent a range of building systems, from the energy we are trying to reduce to the materials we are trying to improve; from the policy developed to spur action to technology applied to make every building greener.

The panel, along with audience participation, will dig into the varied approaches to addressing resiliency and look at how we can bring these perspectives together and start moving towards solutions for the future.

We’re excited that Susan Kapetanovic-Marr, Sustainability Specialist, will be joining this exciting panel! It will take place on Day 2, Thursday, November 7 at 8 am.

More info on this session can be found here.

Passive House Canada Conference: 2 Presentations

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The second annual Passive House Canada Conference will take place at Highland Hall at the University of Toronto, Scarborough on October 17-18, 2019. We’re excited to join this year’s program!

More information can be found here.

Session Overview: Leading by Example – Humber College Building Nx Retrofit

Building Nx is undergoing a deep energy retrofit at Humber College’s North Campus. The retrofitted 1980’s building, a 5-storey office space for faculty, is registered for both Passive House EnerPHit and Net Zero Carbon Building – Design certifications. The scope of the project included a complete upgrade of the existing glass block and insulated metal panel system and replacement of existing mechanical and electrical systems for an ultrahigh-performance envelope and energy efficient BAS. Project representatives (architect, building envelope specialist, and owner) will discuss design, technical performance, and owner experience to provide a comprehensive understanding of the Passive House EnerPHit achievement.

This session will be co-presented by Steve Murray, Senior Building Science Consultant, on Thursday, October 17 at 10:15 am.

Session Overview: Building as a Conscious Act – Finding Opportunity in Health, Resiliency and Community

100,000 years ago, humans had a near extinction. From those 2000 people came the billions we have today. Now we are facing a new threat of extinction.

In the next decade, more than 6,000 cities, states, and provinces around the world will try to do something that has eluded humanity for 50 years: reduce their carbon emissions. But at our rate of urbanization, we’re building the equivalent of a city the size of New York every five weeks.

Ideas that seem crazy today will seem sane in 10 years. In a world where we will “do anything” to end homelessness (except build homes); will “do anything” to end hunger (except provide food); and will “do anything” to cut emissions (except use less coal), we need new, bold solutions to our address our built environment.

In this talk, we’ll journey through an inspirational look at the global crises facing the world and a variety of ways to transform your business to adapt to a warmer, wetter world. Learn from our work with hundreds of municipalities, agencies, and companies to reduce their carbon, boost their performance, slash their operational expenses, and provide healthy spaces for everyone. Learn how to link design to outcome and uncover new ways to expand your business.

Design affects everything. The typeface in your child’s textbook affects their ability to comprehend the information. The ceiling height of your office affects the productivity of your employees. Imagine how you can use design to transform your business to improve outcomes in health, energy, carbon, and more. If you plan cities for cars & traffic, you get cars & traffic. If you plan for people & places, you get people & places.

This session will be presented by Eric Corey Freed, Sustainability Disruptor, on Friday, October 18 at 3:45 pm.

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.

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 as well as compare common assemblies and their previous thermal performance against the new detailed calculation methodology. This will result in how much more heat loss is actually expected in buildings, and how it 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.

 

Panel: Resourcing & Financing Public & Institutional Buildings

Susan Kapetanovic-Marr, Sustainability Specialist, will be moderating this panel on tools and processes specific to Government and Institutional Retrofit projects. The panel will provide insight on the Investor Confidence Project (ICP) and Municipal Energy Solutions. This panel session will take place at 2:15 pm on Wednesday, October 9.

The Condo Conference: Engineering Rapid Fire – Reserve Funds and Project Management

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The Condo Conference brings together Condominium Management, Realtors, Students and AEC Professionals for two days of education focused specifically on the Condominium sector. This year’s conference will take place on October 4th and 5th in Toronto.

More information here.

Session Overview: Engineering Rapid Fire – Reserve Funds and Project Management

The difference between property managers and project managers – they are not the same. Responsible reserve fund planning for patios, roofs, windows, exteriors and big interior and underground projects to name a few; ensuring you don’t create some costly long-term mistakes.

Join Nancy Longueira, Senior Building Science Engineer, for this panel-session with three other industry experts. This session will take place on Friday, October 4th at 9 am in the Gardiner Miller Arnold LLP Room.

OAW Festival: Blueprints to our eco-footprints

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Ottawa Architecture Week (OAW) is an annual week-long festival that welcomes everyone to explore architecture, urbanism, art and design in Ottawa. This year’s theme is “Under Water: Weathering the New Normal” exploring the changing climate impacts on the Ottawa region and the urgent need for new solutions. OAW takes place September 28 to October 8, 2019.

We’re excited to be part of this year’s OAW! More info here.

Mark Lucuik, Director of Sustainability, will participate in this panel on Thursday, October 3. More information on the panel, including registration, can be found here.

Panel Overview: Blueprints to our eco-footprints

The increasingly inclement and extreme weather have cities around the world speaking about resiliency and disaster preparedness. There is urgency to this message but also uncertainty of any clear path forward. The problems feel insurmountable, while the solutions frequently feel disconnected from each other and from reality. Critical challenges have a way of inspiring both technological and social innovation. Individual actions can have a system-wide impact. Strategic structural and policy changes are also needed to keep the momentum going. As we look around the world for creative solutions, we must also remember the importance of working on solutions together in Ottawa for Ottawa.

This year OAW asks us: “How do we weather this new normal, together?”

For decades, the environmental movement has asked us to consider our ecological impact and has challenged us all to take action. How can we reduce, reuse, and recycle? Can we stop clear-cutting and save the rainforest? What causes acid rain? Can we close the hole in the ozone? Are our energy sources renewable? How do we reduce our dependency on fossil fuels? How do we “green” our homes and our cities to make them more sustainable? Can we ban single-use plastics? Is our water safe? The “environmental movement” is itself an ever-shifting landscape. Different issues and different strategies gain popularity. Some persist while others go out of fashion and fade from our memories. It can be hard to keep up and to know what the right thing to do is.

Architecture and the construction industry are major players in the city but are also major contributors to the global carbon footprint. Architecture can help us imagine new ways of living and ways to restore a balanced relationship with the environment. We can find inspiration in the many ecologically-driven international design competitions and projects from around the world. The architectural industry is also in need of reform. The industry continues its work to advance new building and design technologies; sophisticated building modeling; and sustainable building certification programs, such as LEED. External pressure from government regulations and incentive programs, as well as consumer-led choices and changing consumer habits can also help push architecture to identify and transform its own unsustainable practices.

Innovation is not our only resource for change. Inspiration and hope also come from looking to the past. Old buildings hold a wealth of old ideas and a wealth of materials we can call upon for creative solutions to reconcile built and natural environments. Historically, building techniques and traditions evolved to respond to local climate, making use of surrounding renewable natural resources and local knowledge. Building conservation is not just about protecting heritage. It can also be about protecting the environment. Many old buildings can be retrofitted to find new life with new purpose, while others can be rehabilitated to reduce emissions and operating costs. This can happen at the scale of minor renovations to your home, to significant heritage buildings, to entire de-industrialized districts.

Following the discussion, the audience will be invited to join the conversation by asking questions and sharing ideas.