There’s no time like the start of a new year to commit to greener and more sustainable design practices. For inspiration, RECORD asked some of the judges in our annual products competition to share their firms’ goals for improving material choices and product sourcing. Read on for insights from Arup principal Brian Stacy, HOK principal Kimberly Dowdell, and CookFox senior associate Arno Adkins.


RECORD: What are some ways you and your firms are increasing sustainable practices this year?

Brian Stacy:
At Arup, we’ve resolved to discuss the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals as part of our interactive workshops on project conceptualization. In fact, that is how is how I like to start our design process, especially if we have an engaged client.

Kim Dowdell:
We’d like to spread awareness of the passing of the Zero Code Renewal Energy Appendix (ZCREA). It’s a code addition requiring new commercial, institutional, and mid- to high-rise residential buildings to install or procure enough renewable energy to achieve zero net carbon annually. It can have major implications for renewable energy in new buildings.

My colleague Anica Landreneau, HOK’s Director of Sustainable Design, is one of the leading advocates for this appendix to pass. She is most excited the creation of a Zero option in the Model Energy Code for jurisdictions trying to meet heightened climate goals.

Arno Adkins:
The CookFox studio wants to achieve red-list free buildings. And this year we are doing that by pursuing more collaboration with manufacturers and suppliers to talk to everyone involved about healthier design. That way, every designer stays informed and focused on removing toxins from our supply chains. We’re starting to build some momentum and hope to see real change in our projects in 2020.

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