Posts Tagged ‘Greenbuild’

Building Codes and Rating Systems: Carrots or Sticks?

Thanks to Anica Landreneau, director of Sustainable Consulting, for this guest post.

Landreneau Anica EventsGreenbuild is always a great time to meet up with clients, peers and industry leaders while learning about the latest developments in LEED certification, product manufacturing and performance standards.  I went to Greenbuild to do all of those things, but also to speak on a panel about the District of Columbia’s adoption of the International Green Construction Code (IgCC). My fellow panelists were Fulya Kocak, director of sustainability at Clark Construction, and Dave Epley, green building and sustainability coordinator for the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA).

In 2006, Washington, DC, passed the Green

See You @Greenbuild 2012: Nov. 14-16 in San Francisco

Greenbuild 2012, the world’s largest green building conference, is coming to San Francisco Nov. 14-16.

This year’s social media focus brings together technology and sustainability to advance the green movement. You can follow HOK’s activities on Twitter at @HOKNetwork. Be sure to also check out Greenbuild’s official Twitter feed – @Greenbuild – and conversation at #Greenbuild.

HOK’s sustainable design experts will be busy at Greenbuild, speaking at the conference and other related events. Read more below and visit the Greenbuild website to learn more about the conference and expo.

The Road to #Greenbuild is Paved in Social Media

Greenbuild is finally making its way to San Francisco this November – and those of us in the Bay Area are pretty excited. The conference theme is aptly “@ Greenbuild,” referencing the astounding array of Internet, social media and technology companies headquartered here in the Bay Area.  We also have our host of gaming companies, many of whom tap into social networks; gamejobhunter lists over 120 companies nearby, from tiny start-ups to titans like EA and Zynga.

Silicon Valley

Our social media bonanza …

Tour the Bay, Green Building-Style

Greenbuild Tour Proposal Wordle

San Francisco has long been one of the world’s great tourist attractions, and this year it will have a great new set of offerings: 20+ tours developed for the Greenbuild Conference and Expo, plus many more that the USGBC Northern California Chapter will be able to offer in the future.  The Greenbuild Host Committee recently put out a call for tour proposals – the outpouring of responses showed the embarrassment of riches that San Francisco has to offer for green building

@Greenbuild – San Francisco 2012


Road to Greenbuild

Greenbuild, the international green building conference and expo hosted annually by the US Green Building Council, will finally make its way to San Francisco this November.  Greenbuild has been drawing 20,000-30,000 people for the last few years, and we expect that San Francisco will be the largest ever – depending on who you listen to, there may be upwards of 45,000 people.  (Yikes!) 

The conference theme this year is “@Greenbuild”, making reference to the mindboggling array of internet and technology companies headquartered in the Bay Area.  The …

HOK’s Bill Valentine on What’s Next for Sustainable Design

As we look forward to 2012, we recently came across a video from Greenbuild 2011 in Toronto focused on what’s next for sustainable design. In this Greenbuild interview, HOK Chairman Bill Valentine talks about partnering with the USGBC for Project Haiti, designing affordable net zero carbon buildings and bringing new life to existing buildings.

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Project Haiti Takes Center Stage at Greenbuild 2011

HOK is the USGBC’s official design partner for Project Haiti, a pro bono effort to build a LEED-certified orphanage and children’s center in Port au Prince. Sustainable Design Director Mary Ann Lazarus and a team from HOK recently returned from Toronto, where they shared the Project Haiti story at Greenbuild 2011. Read on for Mary Ann’s guest post and an amazing video from the USGBC:

“Imagine it: 15,000 people in the Air Canada Hockey arena, lights flashing, music playing, Jumbotrons running. Cue USGBC CEO Rick Fedrizzi for the introduction of the new Project Haiti video. The video features the recent site visit by the USGBC and HOK team members and meeting with the terrific clients, Gina and Lucien Duncan from the children’s center.

“I was quite …

Reimagining Toronto



















When it comes time for Greenbuild each fall, host cities go at great lengths to showcase their most recent, cutting edge, and sustainably designed buildings sprouting up around the city. In the case of Toronto, you would be mistaken to look for “new” buildings to highlight the city’s green buildings stock. Here, sustainable design begins by looking backwards.

Over the past decade, the city of Toronto has worked tirelessly to repurpose its abandoned building stock. Settled along Lake Ontario, Toronto had long been criticized for disconnecting the city’s residents from the water front, giving priority to shipping and industry. As the level of productivity for those services reduced at the end of …

Project Haiti: Challenges

At the opening charrette for Project Haiti, we asked a few of the designers about the challenges they anticipated for this unique project. Their responses covered everything from technology to materials to cultural considerations. See more:

Also, on the subject of Project Haiti, USGBC President and CEO Rick Fedrizzi recently penned a Huffington Post guest article on the project. Check it out to read Rick’s perspective on how efforts like Project Haiti are simply a matter of making a commitment and sticking to it.

Happy Birthday, Mary Ann!

It’s fitting that the start of Greenbuild 2011 is taking place on the birthday of Mary Ann Lazarus, HOK’s director of sustainable design and very own Mother Earth. If you’re in Toronto, stop by HOK’s booth (#1430N) to sign her giant card and learn about the current pro bono effort she is championing: Project Haiti. Mary Ann just arrived in Toronto from Japan, where she was serving as a delegate for the AIA at UIA 2011. Tomorrow at 8:30 a.m., she will be part of a panel (RD12) presenting on market-rate net zero emissions design. Happy birthday, Mary Ann…and get some rest!

Thanks to our

Project Haiti: The First Charrette

HOK is the USGBC’s official design partner for Project Haiti, a pro bono effort to build a LEED-certified orphanage and children’s center in Port au Prince. The original structure was severely damaged in the January 2010 earthquake that caused mass destruction throughout the country. (Read the first post in this series here.)

When you’re used to seeing colleagues in work attire, it’s strange to see them on a weekend. But there we were – a conference room full of people in shorts and jeans, spending a summer Saturday volunteering for an extraordinary project: rebuilding an orphanage and children’s center in Haiti.

The design process began on June 25, when 14 HOK designers and one USGBC representative met in St. Louis, …

HOK Volunteers Helping USGBC Rebuild Orphanage in Haiti

HOK is USGBC’s official design partner for Project Haiti

Children at Fondation Enfant Jesus (image from HOK site visit, August 2011)

In January 2010, a devastating earthquake shattered the island country of Haiti. One of the countless destroyed buildings was that of Fondation Enfant Jesus, a non-profit, non-denominational orphanage and children’s center that cares for more than 250 children per year. A few months ago, the U.S. Green Building Council invited HOK to join a partnership to design a replacement facility on the same site. The project is now a Clinton Global Initiative commitment, an honor that will help provide support for …

Q+A with HOK Healthcare Sustainable Design Leader Mara Baum

Mara Baum, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, came to HOK’s St. Louis office in 1999 as a young college graduate wary about joining a large architectural firm. After three years working on lab projects as an original member of HOK’s Science + Technology group and contributing to the first edition of The HOK Guidebook to Sustainable Design, her perception changed.

“I learned that you can’t put labels on an organization as large and diverse as HOK,” she says. “When you are working on projects, you are working with individuals and small teams. It wasn’t the ‘studio-industrial complex’ I had imagined. The resources and opportunities here are phenomenal.”

In …

Women Across HOK | Barb Ciesla

Here’s another chapter in our ongoing 5 questions series with the women of HOK.  Meet Barb Ciesla, Sustainable Design Leader and Vice President in Toronto.  Barb has been with HOK almost six years now and we are glad to have her.   She is a Scorpio and true to her zodiacal sign, she is “one intense little creature.”  Barb is as smart as they come and won’t back down, especially when it comes to sustainability.  Read more and you’ll see why.

Barb Ciesla

Q:  Why is sustainable design so important to you? – I got to a point in my design career where, although I was loving what I was doing, I didn’t …

The Aha! Blooper Reel

Like any cinematic production, our video experiment at Greenbuild ’09 elicited a fair share of blooper moments. We’ve compiled a few outtakes and humorous quips below.
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Check out a complete selection of Green Aha! moments on YouTube and Life at HOK.


Our first crop of Green Aha! moments harvested at Greenbuild ’09 range from:

the Simple…
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to the Illuminating…
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to the Downright Quirky…
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Even our very own Barb got in on the action, accompanied by a special “prop.”

Keep checking out our Green Aha! feed from Phoenix on YouTube and Life at HOK.

Live From Greenbuild: Bill Valentine

HOK’s chairman and most vocal sustainable design advocate is blogging Greenbuild 2009 for Contract magazine.

Bill Valentine IS

In his first post for Contract, Bill reflects on his journey to Phoenix, writes about seeing the automated people mover designed by HOK being constructed at the Phoenix airport and describes taking the light rail train to his hotel.

In his next post, Bill gets excited about a new LED downlight from the expo and zeroes in on zero carbon and building retrofits as the big themes for Day 1…and much more.

Related: HOK is recording lots of green-ahas!

Suited Up for Greenbuild ’09

“Mary Ann and the Green Aha! Moments”

Armed with a low-carbon camcorder, two director’s chairs and a boatload of salsa mix, this quirky band of environmentalists is heading to the Great Southwest.

Our plans include rubbing elbows with Al Gore, Sheryl Crow, Anica Landreneau and dozens of other celebrity performers/speakers at the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo in Phoenix. We’re also on a mission to gather Green Aha! moments on video (not since An Inconvenient Truth has there been such raw anticipation for an environmental production).

Here’s a short video preview of our approach:
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If you’re planning to be …

Greenbuild Aha!

HOK is turning the tables at Greenbuild ’09. Instead of adorning our booth with OUR story, we’re creating a platform for telling YOURS. That’s right, it’s Open Mic Night at next week’s big conference and expo in Phoenix.

During the show, we will be inviting individuals to share their Green Aha!, the moment they first realized the importance of living and/or working “green.”
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We will broadcast those inspiring tales at our booth, as well as uploading them to a YouTube Channel so others can share the experience. The most profound Aha! moments will win a free signed copy of The Green Workplace.

See you at Booth #3442. I’ll be the guy …

My First HOK Blog Post…Inspired by GreenBuild (and so much more)

For my first post on our blog, I’ll start with a question of inspiration:  Does it get better than GreenBuild?

When you are a sustainable design professional, in the realm of all the conferences you could attend throughout the year, probably not.

Each year we gather in a different great city (now tens of thousands strong).  We go to meet, greet, say hello again, share our work and pontificate the potential of our impact on this industry (or should I say these industries – we touch hundreds both directly and indirectly).  Two weeks ago I was packing my bags in preparation for

My lie about Greenbuild

I know. I promised to try and frequently blog and post pictures from Greenbuild. I failed. Not for lack of effort. More like lack of time. Maybe next year.

As I look back on this trip, the most amazing thing about this event is the people – a people inspired by change. Everyone is cordial, welcoming and friendly. Everyone’s looking for answers to the growing questions surrounding sustainable design. Many answers are provided.

With my first trip to Greenbuild in the books, I’d like to walk you through it from my perspective as an exhibitor and not an attendee.

Monday, November 17, 2008
6:20 am – Flight leaves for Boston via DC. Much coffee needed.
11:15 am – Flight lands in Boston. Tim Gaidis and …

Boston Green Tea Party

On the final day of Greenbuild in Boston, I took a tour of the Boston Freedom Trail, which retraces the important historic sites in Boston, most of which played a large part in the American Revolution. One of the Fathers of the Revolution, Samuel Adams, has a quote that strongly resonates today in the times of turmoil that our nation is currently facing.

“It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people’s minds”

Our country is at war, our economy is failing and the threat posed by global warming is growing every day. Although we were 30,000 strong …

Blogging at Greenbuild

If you didn’t get a chance to go to Greenbuild in Boston this year, plan to go next year. It was an event full of energy and passion as well as brilliant people, all with a laser-like focus on saving the planet. Really, not a bad way to spend a few days.
I had the great pleasure of moderating a panel there called “Green Blogs and the Built Environment” with four green bloggers, all who spend their days writing about the latest trends in architecture, product design, technology, urban planning and all things green. The panelists, Preston Kroner from Jetson Green, Lloyd Alter from Treehugger, Stephen Del Percio from Green Buildings NYC and Willem Mass from Green Home Guide (recently purchased …

ah, GreenBuild

I just wrapped up a long week at GreenBuild, the penultimate green building conference in the U.S., possibly the world. Yes, I am exhausted, but also invigorated.  Big props to the USGBC for a superb conference that was extremely well organized, even in the face of about 30,000 attendees. Also, for having the adorable, lovely and giant-hearted Archibishop Desmond Tutu speak at the  opening plenary. Often at conferences we get the rockstars with the bigtime resumes and egos to match. Desmond Tutu was a breath of fresh air: he described the audience as ‘the cat’s whiskers’ and echoed the buoyant feeling of the crowd, optimistic about the future of green under a new U.S. Administration (shout out to Obama). …

Greenbuild + HOK Day

Sitting in Boston for Greenbuild, I can’t help but think about all things sustainability-related.

This whole week, as I take in my first Greenbuild experience working the HOK booth, I’m going to try and blog, facebook, twitter, etc. from here. There’ll be pictures, videos, and my thoughts. Hopefully it will give you an inside look at Greenbuild.

This afternoon, more than 30 HOKers from numerous locations will meet to discuss sustainability issues on a firmwide basis and how to plan for the future at HOK Day. We’ll talk about sustainability in terms of design, people and our practices.

Making a difference one step at a time
We will also be discussing the 2009 …