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Festive focus: inspiring architecture

Reid Brewin Architects might be known for pushing the envelope when it comes to design – but we haven’t built such a reputation by chance. The secret to our success is a commitment to continuous personal and professional development – across both our London and Parisian studios.

Each month, our RIBA chartered architects – as well as some of the wider team – take part in CPD sessions at both our locations in a bid to expand their own knowledgebase. And, here’s a little insight into what we’ve been learning more about…

British Standard Institution (BSI) webinar

Adrian Brewin and Clotilde Coudray were finding out more about how to build our tech stack during this digitally focused course on 9 December.

With offices spread across Europe – and with Brexit looming – it was a highly-informative session which helped us to consider how to create ‘healthy, high-performance workplaces using digital technology’, in a post-pandemic world.

It was remarkably interesting to hear about the role of smart technologies, data and analytics – as well as the challenges that have held back investment in such solutions, to date. We came away with plenty of practical ideas, thanks to some ‘real-world’ examples of existing practice from industry and government.

Building Services Research & Information Association (BSRIA) – airtightness course

Airtightness requirements form a key part of our design and detailing for projects, as almost every single one of our colleagues attended BSRIA’s seminar on the subject.

The organisation is a UK-based testing, instrumentation, research, and consultancy organisation, providing specialist solutions in construction and building services engineering – and our workshop was delivered by David Bleicher, publications and training manager.

The course looked at the idea of airtightness and why it is vital for supporting energy efficiency and the performance of ventilation and cooling systems. We also learnt how testing is carried out, what the numbers mean and – very importantly – the England Building Regulations requirements.

We then discussed design and construction with airtightness in mind, as well as examples of typical issues with composite panel and built-up systems.

Facades, wayfinding and signage

While the outer envelope forms the first impression of a building, the role of modern rainscreen facade systems is much more than simply aesthetics – and can fundamentally impact a building at all stages of its lifecycle.

With that in mind, Kingspan joined us to host a session which took a closer look at the impact that varying substructures can have on key performance considerations.

Rivermeade, meanwhile, contemplated the best way to plan a wayfinding scheme. This fully-integrated approach should take into consideration a variety of factors – from the location of the building and transport, to the design of maps and directional signs.

New year plans – comfort, colour, and contrast

The new year will see us exploring ventilation and solar control in high rise buildings with Renson, as well as ‘colour and contrast for inclusive design’ with interior décor experts, Dulux.

The first will consider the psychological and physiological benefits of HVAC and renewable energy, how to optimise ventilation for wellbeing. As well as the optimal balance between air quality, thermal, visual, and acoustic comfort by combining natural ventilation, external sun protection and night cooling.

February, meanwhile, will get underway with a workshop designed (see what we did there) to help delegates to appreciate the importance of colour and luminance contrast in designing inclusive environments.

So, quite the plan for development, right? Keep your eyes on our LinkedIn page for regular updates from each session.

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