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Learn first hand from our engineering team experts, while earning continuing education credits towards your AIA certifications. Contact us to find out more about these AIA approved courses and schedule your next presentation with us.

Have another topic your team could benefit from with an engineering
perspective? Let us know – we’re constantly developing new courses in support of our architectural partners.


Currently over 80% of the buildings that exist today were built before the year 2000. And while buildings themselves have long life expectancies, the systems that make them work do not. With changes to the way businesses operate and teams collaborate, work and integrate technology - design trends have also shifted towards a more densified workspace. This presentation discusses the major impacts of the densified workplace on buildings with aging infrastructure and what you can do to make sure your designs encompass a safe, comfortable and healthy workplaces. We will touch on how to focus capital improvements towards employee betterment within new leases, renovations of existing space or portfolio upgrades


In recent years the majority of multi-family residential buildings have satisfied the ventilation requirements of the dwelling units via natural ventilation and have not provided an additional means of mechanical ventilation. Changes to ASHRAE Standard 62.1 and the adoption of those changes into local codes require multi-family dwelling units to be mechanically ventilated. This presentation evaluates systems and equipment available to meet the code mandated mechanical ventilation requirements and discusses the impacts of the selection on the building.
Areas of impact evaluated are building aesthetics, capital cost, annual energy cost, utility billing structure, building space requirements, systems and equipment maintenance, and green construction rating impact. When appropriate, the impact of building size is included in the evaluation. Not surprisingly, final mechanical ventilation system selection is a process of evaluating tradeoffs. For instance, distributed ventilation systems may not require shaft space in the building core but would require louvers in the building facade. Providing energy recovery for the ventilation and exhaust systems reduces annual energy cost but increases building capital cost. As a result, a single recommendation cannot be provided as every building is not only physically different but the owner’s requirements, the funding structure, and impacts of a green rating system may change the appropriate system selection. Two buildings that would appear to have identical constraints after the fact may have been driven by two very different sets of owner requirements during design and construction and as a result use very different approaches to provide mechanical ventilation to the dwelling units.


Starting with a brief history of HVAC we will cover the most common HVAC system types encountered while working on interiors projects. We will discuss the advantages and disadvantages as well as potential impacts on occupant comfort and energy consumption for each system type.


A comfortable environment is critical to the productivity, well-being, and happiness of the occupants of the indoor built environment. This presentation will discuss the many factors affecting thermal comfort ranging from the routinely discussed space temperature and humidity to the less frequent questions about space air velocity and occupant clothing levels. Throughout we will be discussing common performance gaps between expected and actual comfort levels, the likely causes of these gaps, as well potential improvements.

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