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The Facade Tectonics Forum: Vancouver – The Good and The Bad: Evolving Considerations and Practices of Building Facade Glazing

July 30 @ 7:30 am - 5:30 pm

Facade Tectonics is a curated speaker program that includes diverse voices in the creation of advanced building facade systems, showcasing new perspectives on the opportunities for innovation in the design and delivery of the building skin. Multiple emergent drivers are forcing a step change in the performance demands on buildings, and most particularly on the facade system. These demands mandate an innovative response to issues ranging from systems and materials to design and delivery strategies.

The Facade Tectonics Forum: Vancouver will include speaker presentations as well as panel and interactive discussions addressing the theme The Good and The Bad: Evolving considerations and practices of building facade glazing. Four panels and two special presentations are planned over a full day’s programming, including more than 15 speakers. The Good and The Bad will combine the art, science and technology of the building skin with an unparalleled networking opportunity from the building community.

Big Glazing: The Escalating Challenge of a Centuries-long Trend

The trend of ever larger lites of glass in the building envelope extends back to the Roman Empire and the first use of window glass in architecture. Increasing complexity accompanies this trend: larger glazing units are more challenging to produce, handle, transport, support and install. This ongoing amplification of complexity is itself a trend in architectural glass development, which now involves extensive post-processing of raw flat glass by heat treating, coating, laminating, and printing, and the use of glass in an increasing array of complex assemblies including insulating, laminated, photovoltaic, electrochromic, spectrally-selective and decorative products. Where are these trajectories headed? What are the considerations that practitioners must account for in using “big glass?”

Join Jeff Heymann of Benson Industries, Yvon Chiasson of Morrison Herschfield, and Roland Rossman of Garibaldi Glass as they explore these issues.

An Icon Renewed: The Renovation of Seattle’s Space Needle

After over half a century Seattle’s aging 605-foot-tall Space Needle, built in 1962, was in need of a major overhaul. The structure is a visual icon of Seattle and the Pacific Northwest, but the experience of the user is all about view. The capabilities of architectural glass have improved significantly over the decades since the structure’s original construction, providing significant opportunity for the design team. The new incarnation of the Needle is a celebration of contemporary architectural glazing.

Join Blair Payson of OKA and Richard Green of Front Inc. as they explore the renovation of Seattle’s Space Needle.

Healthy and Sustainable Glazing: Designing for people and the planet

Sustainability parameters are not measured through energy metrics alone. Health and wellness are a growing focus of performance evaluation. New standards and practices are emerging in response to a waxing consciousness of the ultimate purpose of buildings in promoting human health and productivity. Glass in the building facade plays a major role in healthy buildings by providing daylight and view. But the misuse of glass can produce visual, thermal and acoustical discomfort. What are the relevant considerations in architectural glazing design and how can these be balanced to provide optimal conditions for comfort and productivity?

Join Gail Brager of UC Berkeley, Center for the Built Environment , Joel Good of RWDI , and Vladimir Mikler of Integral Group as they explore these issues.

Enough Glazing: Balancing benefits with liabilities of facade glazing

Much in building and facade system design has resulted from the pursuit of transparency in the building skin. Architects want minimal sight lines. Occupants want floor-to-ceiling glass. This demand continues to produce buildings with significantly compromised performance, a trend on a collision course with escalating code requirements driven by the pursuit of reduced carbon emissions in the building sector. Building scientists have pointed to the fallibility of the tall glass building. The glass industry points to the significant benefits of glass in daylighting and connection to the outdoor environment. If glass is good, is more necessarily better? How much glass is enough glass? Managing the benefits and liabilities of glass in the building skin is the most challenging factor in determining building performance.

Join Christian Cianfrone of Zero Energy Buildings Centre of Excellence, Mark Brook, P. Eng. of BVDA Facade Engineering, Tom Paladino of Paladino & Company, and Helen Sanders of Technoform Glass Insulation NA as they explore these issues.

Beyond Glazing: Trends, drivers and what lies beyond the horizon

Architectural glass presents multiple trajectories into the future, all with potential contribution to transformative change in the built environment. These trajectories involve the development of glass as a material and as part of a façade assembly, and the evolution of expression of glass in buildings and their facades—both as a vehicle for transparency, translucency and reflection, and as a performative material facilitating daylight and view. In addition, despite the long-running trends of ever more and ever larger lites of glass in the building skin, escalating performance requirements are driving the consideration and use of alternative façade materials.

Join Stephane Hoffman of Morrison Hershfield, Hamid Voussoughi of WSP, Dr. Chris Drew of AS+GG Architecture, and Mic Patterson of Schüco USA as they explore these issues.


For more information and registration:

The Facade Tectonics Forum: Vancouver website


July 30
7:30 am - 5:30 pm
Event Category:


JW Marriott Parq Vancouver
39 Smithe Street
Vancouver, BC V6B 0R3 Canada
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