Open House meets in Brussels

On Thursday, 25 July, we attended the Brussels Launch Event for the Open House (OH) project.

As stated by the OH steering group… the OPEN HOUSE project aims to merge existing methodologies for sustainability assessment of buildings towards a common view. With the aim of being widely adopted in Europe, the OPEN HOUSE methodology is developed in a fully transparent, collective and open process, with extensive communication and interaction between all stakeholders.

The small Brussels workshop event marked the successful completion of this project, which is of considerable interest from technical, process and market viewpoints. The many actors in this field range from essentially commercial systems such as BREEAM, DGNB, HQE and LEED; to NGOs with a permanent interest in the area but no specific system; and finally to government-funded research groups set up to encourage the development of a common model of building performance assessment within a defined time frame.

SB Conference series wins CIB award

At the CIB World Building Congress, held during 5-6 May in Brisbane Australia, the Triennial CIB Construction & Society Award was awarded for the first time, and the SB Conference series was the recipient. The four international promoters of the series are CIB, iiSBE, UNEP-SBCI and FIDIC.
The award citation states that … the SB Conference series embodies everything that the CIB aims to achieve in promoting research and innovation that is to the benefit of society...

Accepting the award

The award was accepted on behalf the international partners by Chrisna du Plessis (South Africa) and Vanessa Gomes (Brazil).

SB13 conference series is underway

The ambitious program of 2013 SB national conferences – 16 in all – is now well underway. The series is sponsored by CIB, iiSBE, UNEP-SBCI and FIDIC. So far, the events in Munich, Oulu, Vancouver, Colombo, California, Prague, Coventry and Seoul have all taken place according to schedule, and your Editor has attended two events so far, Munich and Prague. Both were very well organized and both featured a preliminary special day for Young Researchers. Emilio Mitre, coordinator of the SB13 events, has attended all except for Vancouver so far, and he will provide his impressions when he returns from holidays.

The District of Tomorrow opens a second building

The District of Tomorrow, the real life lab environment for the Dutch region Limburg, has opened its second building. It is design developed as a learning environment by students of Zuyd university, and constructed by pupils from local construction schools together with professional partners.

District of Tomorrow

MIT holds symposium on urban tool

In early May, we attended an all-day technical event in Boston, the MIT Sustainable Urban Design Symposium. The symposium was primarily organized by Christoph Reinhart, Associate Professor at MIT.
The focus of the symposium was Umi, a new design environment for architects and urban planners who want to model the environmental performance of urban zones and cities, specifically operational energy use, walkability and daylighting potential. Umi is based on the Rhino CAD program and is being developed by the Sustainable Design Lab at MIT. The introduction to the program included a number of case studies.