BAU unveils topics for 2019 edition


Exhibitors will align their presentations at BAU 2019 according to the following themes:

Digital: Processes + Architecture

Digitalisation has been picking up pace in the building industry in recent years. Although construction offices have been working with digital planning tools (eg: CAD), they have done so only in 2D format.

Today, developments in IT and BIM (Building Information Modeling) have not only made planning a lot simpler and easier, it also enhances the quality of it.

Apart from the creative skills of the architect and designers, computers are also generating design—what is now known as “generative design” executed by logarithms. Even though BIM tools demand a huge investment in cost and effort up front, the returns are earned very quickly during the course of the project. Such planning is now common in large-scale projects but industry experts foresee this being executed in smaller projects in future. It could become the standard worldwide.

The building trade must get ready for this development if they are to remain competitive. For example, project teams will gear towards more time and cost-saving measures such as feeding 3D data into machines. Although this may seem like a cut in future jobs, what is more apparent is that the change will still demand the expertise of tradesmen and women, albeit in a different form.

Connected: Living + Working

The spheres of work and play are merging into a grey area where the lines between one’s private and public life is no longer defined. More flexible working hours is good for the family and this also has an impact on how the future workspace should look like to cater to the changing “office”.

For example, employees can choose to sit where they want to on any day, a practice that could save up to 20 per cent of office space. The home too, needs to be rethought so that it can be adapted to fit multiple uses—for a home office, multi-generational living, to fit more residents, or simply to repurpose or extend a space.

These trends have an impact on the city as it means the urban infrastructure must be addressed to meet these new needs.

Integrated: Systems + Constructions

In the field of construction, good design and material are increasingly receiving attention. For example, the facade which, as the outer skin of a building, must also accommodate technologies for ventilation or energy recovery, and all in a very small space. The roles of the architect and the engineer intersect, and early collaboration and detailed planning are now required. New technologies are also being developed and these play a big part in construction.

Although buildings are becoming more complex, there is a general desire to simplify its construction. For example, prefabrication and modular construction not only saves time and money, it is also more precise.

In future, digital planning tools will be helpful, which can translate data directly into individually manufactured components.

Smart: Light + Buildings

Buildings themselves are becoming even more digital. In a “smart building”, all the devices are linked up in a shared “smart grid” and so can communicate directly or indirectly with each other, supported by IoT technology. That brings several advantages: energy streams can be controlled and optimised, energy generated by solar cells can be distributed according to need or also stored for later use. In a somewhat larger network, excess energy can be distributed to neighbouring buildings. Entire urban districts can in this way be connected up into an intelligent network with the aim to use energy where it has been generated.

In a smart building, light is also a key component in energy efficiency. In the building of the future, the use of energy within the building will thus be much more conscious. Not only more sustainable, but also more intelligent, clever and smart.