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3D-printed concrete specialist to keynote agency’s two-day, online conference

The U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Building Sciences has replaced its Washington, D.C. conference this year with Building Innovation 2020: Virtual Edition, billing the August 18-19 program as “a powerfully compact event, focusing on technology, workforce, resilience and Covid-19.”

The event will kick off with a keynote address, “3D Printing as a New Paradigm for Affordable, Resilient Housing,” from Evan Loomis, an Austin, Texas, developer of concrete printing technology. He will discuss how his construction tech company, Icon, is using robotics, software and advanced materials to bring affordable and dignified housing to people affected by disasters while solving for a plurality of problems including homelessness, affordability and resiliency of homes. One of Icon’s early prototypes was sufficient to attract first-hand observers no less than U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson.

Other theme sessions over the two-day BI2020 schedule include “Making the Invisible Visible - Innovative Structure Monitoring Technologies to Validate and Visualize Buildings Enclosure Performance,” with presenter Jason Teetaert, vice president of Business Development for Vancouver, B.C.-based SMT Research Ltd. offering a better understanding of tools for quality assurance, risk mitigation, and innovation support in the construction industry; “Workforce of the Future: Using Data to Advance Industrialization of Construction,” with presenters, Dr. Perry Daneshgari and Dr. Heather Moore, president and vice president of Operations, respectively for MCA Inc.; “Improving Construction Safety to Recruit a Stronger and More Diverse Workforce”; and, “National Building Information Modeling Standard – United States Roadmap,” with presenters Construction Management Professor Carrie Dossick, University of Washington College of Built Environments and Dr. John Messner, director of the Penn State University Computer Integrated Construction Research Program and NIBS BIM Council board chair.

“We have been working around the clock to present the best material for our members and a growing number of attendees, and it became clear Building Innovation needed to move online,” says NIBS President Lakisha Woods. “This year, Building Innovation will deliver two days of critically important educational sessions with the top experts in the industry.”

Given the difficulty of the Covid-19 atmosphere, BI2020: Virtual Edition will ensure the utmost safety for everyone. BI2020 is open to anyone within the building industry. Sessions will cover a spectrum of developments in the areas of workforce, technology, resilience, facility management, and the challenges that Covid-19 brings to the built environment. BI2020 also will feature a “pay what you can” registration fee, ranging from free to a maximum of $395. All registration fees will be used to support the NIBS mission and the greater U.S. built environment. BI2020 brings together innovators, local, state and government leaders, public and private sector representatives, and officials from building and construction. The International Code Council is the title sponsor.www.buildinginnovation.org