Policy to Construction: How Carbon Reduction Impacts NYC Agencies & AEC Industry

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New York City’s energy use and carbon reduction objectives are increasingly ambitious in the face of climate change. The Building, Energy and Zoning Codes are changing accordingly, introducing specific building construction requirements based on building science and energy reduction research. These changes must consider both what is possible within an AEC industry traditionally resistant to change and the necessity to evolve. New requirements impact the responsible government agencies, architects, engineers, and contractors that design and build our city—which each group having interrelated interests. This panel will bring together a range of AEC industry experts—a Department of Buildings official, a building science engineer, an architect, a construction manager, and a testing agency—to present and discuss the challenges and opportunities as their professions adapt to these regulatory building science changes.

Eliot Benor, Founder, Building Envelope Testing LLC (BET)
Duncan Brown, RA, Energy Code Chief Plan Examiner, New York City Department of Buildings
Satoko Hoshino, AIA, Project Manager, Turner
Cheryl Saldanha, PE, CPHD, Senior Project Manager, Simpson Gumpertz & Heger
Stas Zakrzewski, FAIA, CPHD, Principal, ZH Architects

About the Speakers:
Eliot Benor founded Building Envelope Testing LLC (BET), a NYC based façade testing lab with a full fenestration and building envelope testing facility in Middletown, NY, USA. BET is also a calibrating lab; which means BET build and calibrate their own equipment and instruments to NIST or other nationally traceable standards. Façade and façade component testing is BET’s only business. Prior to founding BET, Eliot was a senior consultant at Israel Berger and associates NYC and has 30 years of fenestration and construction experience. Benor is a voting member of ASTM Committees D01, E05, E6 and E36 and a member of AAMA. Benor is also a member of the NYC Department of Buildings advisory committee’s for Chapter 17, NYC ECC and FISP.

Duncan Brown serves as the Energy Code Chief Plan Examiner at the New York City Department of Buildings, where he has led the team responsible for energy code compliance reviews since 2014. Brown's contributions also include committee memberships for the 2018 IECC Residential Code and the 2021 IgCC Code, advancing energy and sustainability at the national level. Currently, he provides advisory insights for updating the NY Stretch Energy Code. A Registered Architect and Certified Energy Manager, Brown brings a wealth of expertise to the City.

Satoko Hoshino has 25+ years of experience in both design and construction. She has served in project management and project engineering roles at Turner Construction Company for award-winning projects, including Columbia University Business School and Northwell Health Lenox Health Greenwich Village. Hoshino was the architectural manager at 550 Washington Street Redevelopment, the 1.3 million sq. ft. “land scraper,” which will serve as the NY Headquarters for Google. After ten years in the field, she recently joined Turner’s preconstruction group, getting involved with project teams as early as concept design.

Cheryl Saldanha leads Simpson Gumpertz & Heger (SGH)’s Building Science and Passive House Practices and specializes in designing and evaluating building enclosures for new construction projects and existing building enclosure renovations. Her experience includes curtain wall, rainscreen facade, roofing, and waterproofing systems on a range of building types. Saldanha is adept at using multiple computer software packages to simulate building systems and details for thermal, condensation, whole-building energy, and daylighting analysis. Saldanha has co-chaired the New York City Chapter of the International Building Performance Simulation Association and participated on the NYC Commercial Energy Code Technical Advisory Committee for the last two code cycles. Saldanha has authored technical papers and lectured on topics ranging from embodied and operational carbon of facades, thermal bridging calculations, energy modeling, curtain wall spandrels, and condensation issues in building envelope systems. Saldanha was recently awarded Building Design + Construction magazine’s Top 40 under 40 for 2022.

Stas Zakrzewski is a principal at ZH Architects, a practice that integrates sustainable strategies into a body of modern and design driven work. ZH is a widely recognized industry and thought leader in Low Carbon Buildings and has completed several certified passive house projects ranging from single family houses to a 24 story residential high rise tower. This range of work has provided an understanding of the hurdles and opportunities available in the current code and regulatory climate. Zakrzewski has held roles as a member of the AIA’s COTE committee, New York Passive House, and has advised on NYC’s DOB Energy Code Committees. Zakrzewski recently acted as chair for the Multifamily Working Group for NYC’s Climate Mobilization Act, also known as Local Law 97.