Can College Kids Help Mass. Towns Go Green?

Can College Kids Help Mass. Towns Go Green?

BCT's extension faculty member Ben Weil and his "Clean Energy Corps" students (from the BCT 597R course) were recently in the news with their efforts to make buildings more sustainable for Massachusetts' municipalities: Let Us Introduce the UMass Clean Energy Corps Ask town officials what they think in Ware. Ask them in Natick, and in Greenfield. Palmer too. These are some of the towns where the new UMass Clean Energy Corps has touched down in the few months since its founding. The Corps is a student-centered initiative focused on helping communities across the Commonwealth develop and meet their clean energy goals. It was created by UMass Clean Energy Extension, a research and outreach program that in its first two years of life has been helping transform communities and businesses into cleaner, more efficient places to live, work, and grow into the future. UMass Clean Energy Extension is a program of UMass Extension (or as it was once known, Cooperative Extension), which, for over a hundred...
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UMass Amherst Students Build Timber Grid Shell as Pop-up Exhibition on Fine Arts Center Plaza

UMass Amherst Students Build Timber Grid Shell as Pop-up Exhibition on Fine Arts Center Plaza

After a lot of work, the timber gridshell on the Fine Arts Center plaza is now finally up and open to the public. This multidisciplinary design-build project, led by BCT faculty Peggi Clouston and supported by BCT adjunct faculty John Fabel (and many others), involved many students from across UMass. You can find more information in the official press release (below) and on the accompanying website: AMHERST, Mass. – A massive and intricate wooden dome temporarily adorning the plaza of the Fine Arts Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst was engineered and constructed by UMass students over two semesters as part of a wood design studio class. Known in technical circles as a timber grid shell, the structure is the end product  of a course taught by Peggi Clouston, associate professor in the building and construction technology program at the university. Thirty feet in diameter, the 3,500-pound shell rises to 11 feet at the center. The 52 longest laths in the...
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Hoque receives CNS college’s Outstanding Service/Outreach award

Hoque receives CNS college’s Outstanding Service/Outreach award

BCT faculty member Simi Hoque just received this year's CNS college's Outstanding Service/Outreach award. We congratulate her on that amazing accomplishment! From the announcement: Simi Hoque, Environmental Conservation, recently received a five-year, $508,714 NSF CAREER award to develop an integrated planning tool that will measure, evaluate and predict the impacts of energy, water and land use, waste management and transportation systems at an urban scale. The green building expert intends it to help planners and policymakers guide growth and development in a coordinated, sustainable way. Hoque, an assistant professor in the Building and Construction Technology Program, points out that cities today account for almost two-thirds of the world's primary energy demand, a figure projected to increase to three-quarters by 2030. "The current urban outlook demands a comprehensive understanding of urban sustainability policies to address climate change and energy security," she says. Read more...
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BCT’s Ben Weil discusses Ice Dams on Boston.com

BCT’s Ben Weil discusses Ice Dams on Boston.com

Ben Weil, BCT's extension faculty member in building energy, was called upon recently by Boston.com to discuss the ever-popular winter topic of ice dams. The following article features his very helpful tips for avoiding this common winter nuisance: Ice dam basics: How to prevent them and avoid a lot of costly water damage For more on the topic, also check out our other article on this site: Preventing Ice Dams....
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Clouston Panelist in Women in Design Symposium at ABX Conference

Clouston Panelist in Women in Design Symposium at ABX Conference

BCT faculty member Peggi Clouston will be one of the panelists during the prestigious keynote breakfast at the Women in Design Symposium at the ABX conference on 11/18. ABX is an architecture-focused conference, held annually in Boston. From the announcement: This program includes a keynote breakfast, a forward-thinking brainstorming session, and the much-anticipated WID Awards Ceremony & Luncheon. How might the deepening relationship between research and design lead to practical applications? How might architects inform research methodologies within their own practice to inform innovation in the larger building industry? This year, Women in Design have invited four practitioners from design and academic backgrounds to hold an eye-opening discussion about the blending of research and design and how it is evolving the design industry in new and exciting ways. Enjoy breakfast with colleagues and hear the panel tackle this timely topic. Speakers Dr. Peggi Clouston Ph.D. M.A.Sc.(Eng) P.Eng. Associate Professor University of Massachusetts, Amherst Billie Faircloth AIA, LEED AP BD+C Partner KieranTimberlake Mimi Love Principal Utile, Inc. J. Meejin...
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