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By Dan Flower, Associate, HKS London
I’ve departed London for Uganda with our project partner, Engineers For Overseas Development’s Carmarthenshire group from Southwest Wales, to begin work on Citizen HKS’ first project – a new maternity ward in Kachumbala, Uganda. I’ll be with the EFOD team on site for two weeks where we’ll be presenting, tweaking and gaining approval for the maternity ward design from local leadership and the Bukeda District Council. Following a ground breaking ceremony and additional site set-up, we’re recruiting and training Kachumbala locals and, working together, we will dig the foundation, lay drainage and cast up to the slab.
By Brinda Sengupta
Growing numbers of privately owned automobiles, pollution, and congestion have helped governments in cities across India realize the need for better mass transport systems. Cities like Delhi are now making substantial investments to improve existing systems and implement new measures. However, even as Delhi is investing in rail and bus lines, “last mile connectivity” – connecting people from their homes to transport hubs – remains an area of concern and neglect for the city and the country as a whole. This lack of affordable and safe last-mile connectivity has created a situation in which the poorest, who rely most on mass transport, are the very people that are having the hardest time reaching safe, sustainable, affordable transport options.
The Sprint to Savings has begun at Phelps ACEHS! Amber Wirth and Kate Renner from HKS, Steve Wohlschlegel from the Integral Group and Jamie Donovan from DGS attended Mr. Vrooman’s AP Environmental Science class on Wednesday, February 5th to develop innovative ideas to encourage teachers and students to save energy at Phelps. The end goal of the program is to save energy, and in turn, save money for the DC Public School System. Sprint to Savings is a program to reduce energy usage at participating schools by 5 – 10% over the course of just three weeks. The prize for reducing energy by 10% is $10,000! The official start date for the Sprint to Savings is on Monday, February 10th!
This morning the USGBC awarded the HKS Dallas Headquarters a Platinum certification under the LEED v3 for Commercial Interiors rating system. The project achieved 83 of 110 possible points.
The HKS Atlanta office renovation has been featured on the Inhabitat.com. The website is dedicated to the future of design and tracking innovations, technologies and materials that are pushing architecture and design towards a more sustainable future. HKS is recognized as a global architecture firm with a growing reputation for sustainable design. To add to our credentials, the office in Atlanta was awarded LEED Gold for Commercial Interiors.
It has become a weekly topic on ABC World News… Made in America. Each segment, newscasters discuss how buying products made in America will help create American jobs. A local builder in Montana is building homes made entirely of American made products. He is convinced that if every builder bought just 5% more American materials it would create 220,000 jobs. If residential builders can have that great of an impact on our ecomony, just image the impact if architects and designers specified more American made products on commercial projects.
COMFEN is a tool designed to support the systematic evaluation of alternative fenestration systems for project-specific commercial building applications. Developed by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory for architectural façade designer, COMFEN provides a simplified user interface that focuses attention on key variables in fenestration design. Under the hood is Energy Plus, a sophisticated analysis engine that dynamically simulates the effects of these key fenestration variables on energy consumption, peak energy demand, and thermal and visual comfort. The results from the Energy Plus simulations are presented in graphical and tabular format within the simplified user interface for comparative fenestration design cases to help users move toward optimal fenestration design choices for their project.
HKS’s commitment to the 2030 Challenge, spawned innovative changes to our standard C401 Agreement with our MEP Consultants. These changes are catching the attention of the AE community (including the AIA) for their ability to promote greater integration of engineering innovation into the architectural design process.
Due to uncertainty in gas prices, our need to reduce dependency on foreign oil, and the evolution of an ever more environmentally conscious consumer, the reality of mass produced electric vehicles is quickly approaching.
Right now, most of the major car manufacturers are embracing EV technology. Soon we can expect at least twenty different plug-in models on the road. Electric vehicles are here to stay, and they’re going to require safe, reliable ways to stay charged up.
In 2009, textiles accounted for 5.2 percent of the municipal waste stream and only 13.8 percent were recycled. That means about 10.8 million tons of clothing and textiles ended up in the landfill. The thing is, much of the clothing that ends up getting tossed can actually be reused or salvaged by non-profile organizations likeCampus California to raise money for good causes. The organization collects clothing and shoes via green boxes placed strategically throughout California in parking lots and business centers.