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We Po-st. Coined by the scholar Edward de Bono, the word “po” is a way to signal during a brainstorming session that what is to follow is not nonsense but rather a provocative operation.
December 17, 2015

Julie Nelson to present at NCGS Forum with Sacred Heart


On February 8th, Julie Nelson will present at the NCGS 2016 Global Forum on Girls’ Education with Aubree Stephens, a Convent of the Sacred Heart Upper School Science Teacher and an existing collaborator of Julie’s. Their session, “Drafting the Future: Students and Architects Designing in Tandem,” will give participants an insider’s look at the “Introduction to Engineering” course at NYC’s all-female Convent of the Sacred Heart. This year, that course included hands-on learning with Julie, a key partner of the female-led team responsible for Sacred Heart’s new Athletics & Wellness Center.

By framing buildings (including school buildings) as teaching tools, educators can meaningfully expand the portfolio of approaches that they use in the classroom. Julie and Aubree’s session at the Global Forum will illustrate how education and architecture professionals can effectively collaborate in this process, thereby fostering interdisciplinary learning, integrating emerging technologies, and instilling a sense of global citizenship, all while keeping students engaged. For educators whose institutions are planning new buildings, this collaboration can also ensure that excitement about the investment continues beyond a building’s ribbon cutting. Participants will leave the session with clear ideas for hands-on design challenges that also demonstrate opportunities for women in the building industry, possibly even in a student’s own backyard.

More information on the Global Forum is available here, including details about registration.

December 15, 2015

Oculus shares the past, present, and future of 529 Broadway


The latest issue of Oculus includes a close look at 529 Broadway, by writer Sarah Goodyear. In her piece, Goodyear reveals how the site’s past inspired our team’s approach to the building design, which involved a combination of careful observation, design talent, new technologies, and (humorously) a pair of binoculars.

Read the full article and several other interesting pieces in the Winter 2015 Oculus, and learn more about the project right here on our site.

December 11, 2015

Eight takeaways from Greenbuild 2015

MAIN_Greenbuild Brochure
Greenbuild, a multi-day conference centered on sustainable design and construction, lived up to its promise in 2015. Three BKSK staff members share their top takeaways from the annual event.

It’s essential to move past good intentions.
While it is admirable to start with your heart in the right place, it is important to use that sentiment as motivation for achieving meaningful impact. By moving beyond intention, we can uncover surprising opportunities and create more successful designs. For example, in a session titled “The Science of Circadian Lighting,” we learned about a design team that was deeply committed to bringing the best quality daylight to their client. Fortunately, through measurements, they were able to identify that the site’s north-facing windows would facilitate more appropriate daylighting levels than the south-facing ones, which were often shaded due to glare. (For a broader illustration of this idea, look no further than the Center for Urban Pedagogy’s delightful brochure on Dick & Rick.) Read more

December 7, 2015

The LAB to explore designing wellness and behavior at LF16


For the third year in a row, BKSK’s Jennifer Preston and James Wilson will present at Living Future’s annual unConference, happening this coming May in Seattle.

The two will be joined by colleague Tristan Roberts of BuildingGreen for a participatory exploration of hygge, a Danish cultural tradition that “might have us looking not to the natural environment but inward—at human culture and at what makes us feel at home,” to quote a recent piece in BuildingGreen. James recently completed research on hygge as the George G. Booth Traveling Fellow, through the University of Michigan’s Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning. His investigations into socio-cultural influences on  human health and wellness will directly inform the Living Future session, titled “Hygge: Designing Trust, Wellness and Stewardship.”

Jennifer and Tristan will also present a second session with colleague Andrea Love of Payette. Titled “To Transform Inertia, Design Behavior,” the session will inspire participants to uncover opportunities for building momentum within one’s own practice.

We look forward to seeing you there!

December 1, 2015

Join BKSK in making the Lambaye Learning Center a reality


Rendering of the Lambaye Learning Center’s porch.

This Giving Tuesday, George Schieferdecker and the other partners and associates at BKSK ask you to join our push in making the Lambaye Learning Center a reality. Learn more about the project and our current fundraising goal by reading George’s letter, after the jump. Read more