Facade Tectonics Institute Conducts Regional Forum at the University of Washington

The Facade Tectonics Institute (FTI)—a premier member organization for building industry professionals, academic, government, and nonprofit organizations and institutions that recognize the building facade system as the lynchpin to sustainable buildings and urban habitat—hosted its fourth 2019 Regional Forum in the series Material Matters, this latest at the University of Washington.

FTI is widely recognized for producing the leading technical events focused on buildings and urban habitat through the lens of the building skin. FTI’s celebrated Forum series focuses on industry issues, trends, and emerging technologies as they relate to buildings, their facade systems and the built environment.

About Seattle

Seattle and the University of Washington proved to be an ideal venue for the Material Matters Forum. The City has emerged as a global leader in the pursuit of resilient and sustainable communities. It is home to many iconic structures that have influenced the building industry both at home and abroad and continues to push the boundaries of architecture and urban planning. The forum brought industry and academic thought leaders together to explore the “facade-effect”—the profound influence of the facade system on buildings and urban habitat.

About the Program and Speakers

The Forum included four expert-led panel sessions, each followed by moderated Q&A. Topics included integrated parametric workflows in advanced facade design and execution, balancing operating and embodied carbon consideration in facade design and the facade’s role in zero carbon buildings. One session featured a deep dive into the design and construction of Amazon’s fascinating Seattle Spheres.

Several of the panels explored the carbon problem in the building sector and explored facade system strategies for carbon reductions in buildings and the built environment. Mic Patterson, FTI Ambassador of Innovation and Collaboration, noted that sustainability is a cultural issue, driven by human behaviors and patterns of consumption, including the way we implement and use buildings. The program highlighted the need for both professionals and educators to place greater emphasis on sustainable building practices and shift the predominant focus on building aesthetics to building performance.

Matt Staublin of HOK moderated the session Digits, Data and Beyond which featured speakers Sanjeev Tankha of Walter P Moore, Maurya McClintock of McClintock Facade Consulting, Stephane Hoffman of Morrison Hershfield and Sean Quinnof HOK.

Kate Simonen of Carbon Leadership Forum and University of Washington moderated and spoke in the session Carbon Counting which featured speakers Stacy Smedley of Skanska, Kjell Anderson of LMN Architects and Mic Patterson of the Facade Tectonics Institute.

Christopher Meek of University of Washington moderated the session Facade Effects which featured speakers David Meadof PAE Engineers, Margaret Sprug of The Miller Hull Partnership and Jim Hanfordof The Miller Hull Partnership.

Christopher Meek of University of Washington moderated the session Spheres of Influence which featured speakers David Sadinsky of NBBJ and Charles Gronek of WSP.

“Seattle showcases the endless potential for growth within the built environment through its groundbreaking architecture. We are thrilled to have had the opportunity to experience the unique ambiance of this beautiful city in bringing our Forum to the University of Washington,” said Helen Sanders, President of the Facade Tectonics Institute. “On behalf of FTI we want to thank everyone who helped make the event a success including the University, our sponsors, speakers and attendees.”


About Facade Tectonics Institute

The Facade Tectonics Institute (FTI) is the premier member organization for building industry and professionals as well as academic, government, and nonprofit organizations and institutions focused on healthy and livable communities. The Institute’s primary objective is to fuel discussion and collaborative research that bridges fragmented market segments of the building industry, pairing government, academia, ownership, and industry professionals. Integral to this mission is the dissemination of historical, theoretical, and practical information derived from this research to the building marketplace, thereby acting as a conduit and facilitator for both learning and further collaborative research pursuits.


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