Performative Skins: Integrative Solutions to Multiple Performance Drivers

The building skin uniquely combines attributes of both appearance and performance. Yet aesthetic considerations have been the predominant drivers of most of what we see built and under construction around us. What are the state-of-the art of facade technologies with respect to performance, and where does it need to be to support a sustainable urban environment? What role does the tall building play in such an environment? Is the very notion of a sustainable tall building an oxymoron? And what role can the facade play in the development of sustainable urban architecture? The building skin is the nexus of numerous and often competing performance considerations, challenging the most advanced building teams and accomplished facade designers. Daylighting and glare, view and noise, cost and durability, glass area and u-factor represent just a few of the considerations that must be balanced to achieve optimal performance. Key to accomplishing this is the concept of integration and holistic design process — no consideration can be omitted, all must be integrated into a comprehensive response to the nuances of a particular application.

Peter Arbour, facade designer, engineer, system innovator, and senior consultant with Vidaris in New York City, will moderate this panel of leading facade practitioners. Stephen Selkowitz, senior advisor with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Lance Bischoff, senior technical director with AKRF, and Deborah Moelis, senior associate with Handel Architects, will bring to the dialogue the immediacy of emerging facade technology and its application.


Peter Arbour

Owner, Vidaris, Inc.

Stephen Selkowitz

Senior Advisor for Building Science, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab

Photo of Lance Bischoff

Lance Bischoff

Senior Technical Director, AKRF

Deborah Moelis

Senior Associate, Handel Architects