News & Events

DIALOG Partners Deliver Keynote Presentation at 2021 CSCE Annual Conference

May 26, 2021

DIALOG Partners Craig Applegath, Thomas Wu, and Daria Khachi will deliver the keynote presentation at the 2021 Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE) Annual Conference on May 27, 2021 at 10 a.m. EDT. 

Their presentation “Reaching for the Sky! Locking up Carbon in a Supertall Hybrid Wood Tower” will look at the Zero Carbon Hybrid Timber Supertall Prototype, a project that was recently awarded Fast Company‘s 2021 World Changing Ideas Award in architecture.  

We have a BIG problem: buildings contribute nearly 40% of annual global CO2 emissions, more than any other sector. And so we need BIG solutions, ones that learn from and work with nature.

We believe sustainably harvested mass timber is one of those BIG solutions because it locks up biogenic carbon (timber contains 50% carbon by dry mass). The question we asked ourselves was: how to maximize the quantity of sustainably harvested mass timber in new construction? Floor systems comprise around 70% of a building’s structure so that’s where we focused our efforts. The result was a design for a patent-pending, prefabricated, sustainable mass timber composite: the Hybrid Timber Floor System (HTFS).

To test the system, DIALOG, in partnership with EllisDon and RWDI, designed a mixed-use 105-story Zero Carbon Hybrid Timber Supertall Prototype. The impact was significant: the HTFS reduced embodied carbon by 46% while incorporating 14x more carbon sequestering mass timber than the current tallest mass timber building at 18 stories. To achieve net-zero operational carbon, we augmented energy efficiency, smart technologies, and façade-integrated photovoltaics with a bioreactor that uses algae to capture carbon produced by an on-site co-generation plant.

Vertical urbanization will continue in major urban centers; the HTFS and zero-carbon prototype demonstrate that engineers and architects can solve the environmental challenges associated with development by turning to nature for inspiration.


Registration for this event is available here