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Knowledge-building at DAS Conference

by Darren
Knowledge building at DAS conference

The DAS Conference, hosted by WALLS&ROOFS and FLOORS magazine achieved new heights during its first full day event that was held in Midrand on 21 April.

Bringing together designers, architects, specifiers and other professionals in the built environment, DAS Conference, hosted by WALLS&ROOFS and FLOORS magazines, had a full line-up of industry experts talking about everything from building standards and energy performance in buildings to the future of 3D printing.

For the first time moving closer to Johannesburg, the full day CPD event held on 21 April at Bytes Conference Centre in Midrand drew a crowd of over 200 attendees, earning registered professionals a full CPD point.

Kicking off the day of learning, Jacques Laubscher, associate professor at TUT, pointed out that the context of building regulations is often misunderstood and explained the energy performance requirements of fenestration in South Africa.

Andrew Marsh from MarshLand 3D took the audience on a trip to the future, discussing how 3D printing can be used as a design and construction tool going forward. He referred to a case study where 3Dprinting cut time in half and costs by 60%.

The CIDB’s Rodney Mildford talked about energy performance certificates and the post-2015 national energy efficiency strategy.

Getting practical, Werner van Antwerpen from Growthpoint highlighted that energy efficient properties result in 2.7% more growth and that while 4 Star Green Star ratings used to be the norm people are pushing the boundaries, aiming for 5 Stars as a standard nowadays. He also explained how to benchmark office buildings in terms of energy and interventions and said that some office and retail buildings are ideal for solar installations.

Mike Barker took the conversation about fenestration further, speaking about the need for performance-based building codes to replace the restrictive prescriptive codes in order to maximise savings and return on investment. “Design for resiliency and energy efficiency will take care of itself,” he said.

Giving insight into Rwanda’s first 6 Star Green Star rated building, Eloshan Naicker from WSP stated that sustainability is about meeting current needs without sacrificing the needs of the future.

With alternative building technologies growing market share, Elsje Balzun from the CSIR explained the performance quantification of these technologies within the different local climatic regions.

Back to solar, Henning Holm from Holms & Friends spoke about how solar photovoltaic and thermal systems are part of the solution and gave some rules of thumb for judging different systems.

What influence does design have on our cities and neighbourhoods? Braam de Villiers from Earthworld Architects explained how the economic wellbeing of our cities is dependent on design, using the Tshwane/Pretoria Re-juve-a-Nation proposal as an example.

The feedback from delegates was overwhelmingly positive.

Thank you to all the sponsors who made the day possible and who exhibited a vast array of construction products during the day with representatives to answer any questions: Marley Building Systems, Floorworx, Dekton by Cosentino, a.b.e. Construction Chemicals, Technical Finishes, Tal, Den Braven, Rigifoam LAMBDABOARD®  and Avance.

The next DAS Conference will take place at the Atterbury Theatre in Pretoria on 2 September. It will be a half day event. More information is available on www.buildingdecor.co.za or phone 012 347 7530.

What did the attendees enjoy?
•    Well organised, good value for money and on time. Keep up the good work! – Mario Farinha
•    The variety of subjects. – BW Koortzen
•    Meeting people with fresh ideas. – Marian Laserson
•    The relevance of the presentations. – Delene Snyman
•    Thanks for being on time. – Dudley van Wyk
•    Great day! Thanks. – Jakolien Vlok
•    Good venue, acoustics and a variety of informative speakers. – Werner Bester
•    Lots of info in one go. – Stuart McIntosh
•    Learning about new products and more about sustainable energy. Thank you. – Nthabiseng Mabena
•    Great, thank you. – Pieter Swart

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