CIBSE’s Building Performance Conference and Exhibition was dominated by talks on security and the influence of occupant behaviour on building performance
The opening day of CIBSE’s Building Performance Conference and Exhibition was dominated by talks on security, as some of the UK’s top engineers grappled with the issue.
The key findings from the sessions focussed on treating security as a people problem as well as a technology problem; businesses in future need to think hard about who is given information about a building via systems like BIM, how much ancillary information contractors might have that could one day be exploited, and how easy it is to access detailed BIM information that could make a building vulnerable.
All speakers were agreed that security must be a primary consideration for designers. Ian Ellis of Siemens said: “People know the potential risk associated with security, what is necessary is to make security a priority that is introduced into the design as early as possible.”
The influence of occupant behaviour as key driver of building performance was debated on the second day by psychologists and specialists in building use and adaptation on the second day of the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineer’s (CIBSE) Conference and Exhibition.
This talk formed part of a session on how the UK building stock can be adapted to climate change, with Ann Marie Aguilar, of Arup, who focussed on meeting the increasing needs of older people and the disabled by considering how they actually use buildings and making small changes that enhance their wellbeing and quality of life.
Alexi Marmot of Alexi Marmot Associates argued that we only use a small percentage of total office space productively, but re-designing the working week around usage patterns is often too psychologically difficult to achieve.
The session on changes to UK and EU legislation relating to buildings featured talks on Building Regulations in the UK and likely changes to Part L in England and the requirements of the F-Gas Directive, presented by Mike Nankivell of the Air Conditioning and Refrigerant Training Board (ACRIB).
The afternoon sessions featured presentations of recent Innovate UK funded research. There was lively debate between the audience and those speaking on the evaluation of building performance. Matt Colmer of Innovate UK asked the key question “why don’t buildings perform in real life as they do on paper?”.
From a client perspective users do not always use the building’s systems as the designer intended, and empathy between designer and end user is a good way to boost building performance. Other speakers outlined the challenges facing designers in trying to meet this challenge, and achieve designs which meet the design energy performance expectations.
The Conference closed with a session on innovation and collaboration in building performance, echoing Nick Mead’s Presidential theme of collaboration. Among the ideas on show were an ‘impossible house’ that generates more electricity than it uses and costs £125k, the connected city of Bristol as visited by the President of Singapore, and a power generating tree.