October 16 2020 
Toronto ON & New Online Option

Delegate Pass $225, Digital Pass $50: register today

Continuing education hours included

COVID-19 Update

Preparations for the 2020 Green Building Festival are underway.

We continue to monitor public health advisories to determine if it will be safe to proceed with some version of the onsite Festival on October 16 2020.

A new Digital Delegate pass is available for virtual participation. All delegates will be offered a full refund in the case of postponement or cancellation.

BIO: Building in Nature

Human activities are now the dominant influence on climate, ecosystems and biodiversity. Clearly our buildings and cities can no longer justify outsized demands on land, materials, energy, water and resources.

Today’s visionary practitioners have rejected the Anthropocene model and are building with an ecological mindset. They are leveraging natural processes in design, materials, construction, and operations to create a deeper integration between biology and our urban developments.

On October 16 2020, the annual Green Building Festival explores some of the most innovative approaches for buildings and cities to both mimic and nurture ecosystems.

GBF20 will showcase groundbreaking innovative bio-inspired projects:

- Learn how the Roissy airport façade uses the thermal properties of zebra stripes to reduce cooling loads and depollute the air

- Hear how Demain Montréal, a C-40 award winning Carbon Positive mixed-use development, integrates community engagement, urban farming, decarbonized construction and a strategy to capture carbon during the operational phase

- Any many more inspiring examples of building in nature

Attend GBF20 and explore Biodiversity, Biomimicry, Biogenics, Bioresources, Bioeconomy and other generative processes that strive to achieve circularity and the enhancement of nature in the built environment.

Registration is open and offers two options to participate: a new $50 Digital Delegate pass for virtual attendees, and a Full Delegate pass at the early bird rate of only $225 for a full day of inspired thought leadership in green buildings and sustainable cities.

Date: October 16  2020, 8 am – 7 pm
Location: Toronto Marriott Downtown Eaton Centre, 525 Bay Street, Toronto ON M5G 2L2 CANADA

Digital Pass: $50 – includes digital access to all programming + continuing education hours certificate
Full Delegate Pass: $225 early bird rate - includes onsite access to a 
full day of inspiring speakers and expert programming, meals, networking reception, continuing education hours certificate for GBCI, OAA, OALA, OPPI & PEO

We are pleased to offer delegates a preferred hotel room rate of $239 per night at the Festival venue, the Marriott Downtown at CF Toronto Eaton Centre.

To reserve, please book directly with the venue online or call toll-free 1-800-905-0667.


GBF20 speaker
Liat Margolis
Associate Professor & Associate Dean of Research, Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, University of Toronto
Speaker Bio

Liat Margolis is an Associate Professor at the University of Toronto, Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design . She is currently appointed as Director of the Master of Landscape Architecture Program, and Associate Dean of Research for the Faculty.

Prof. Margolis is the Founding Director of the U of T Green Roof Innovation Testing Laboratory (GRIT Lab), which received the 2013 American Association of Landscape Architects Excellence Award in Research. The GRIT Lab conducts interdisciplinary research on the environmental performance of green roof and green wall technologies in relation to green building standards and regional sustainability objectives.

She serves on a number of advisory committees for the City of Toronto, providing guidance on the Green Streets Technical Guidelines, Pollinator Protection Strategy, Toronto Green Standard, and Eco-Incentive Program.

Nicole North
Sales Specialist - Growing Media, Resource Recovery
Walker Environmental, a division of Walker Industries
Policy, practice and contracting for biological health

Speaker Bio

Nicole has spent her entire career, starting in the early 1990’s, in the Horticultural sector. Her experience includes Landscape Architecture, Nursery/Garden Centre Management, Entrepreneur & Business Ownership and currently Sales Specialist – Growing Media at Walker.

Nicole has an Honours Degree in Environmental Science (Horticulture & Natural Resource Management) from the University of Guelph.

Presentation Outline

In building and urban development, soil science is a fundamentally critical but poorly understood element of a biologically healthy ecosystem. Specifications for sites and even municipal guidelines betray a widespread misunderstanding of good science and best practices.

Nicole North will illustrate where the problems lie and what changes need to take place in policy, practice and contracting to ensure optimum biological health.

Daniel Pearl Head Shot
Daniel Pearl
Architect and Founder, l’ŒUF
Speaker Bio

In 1992, Daniel Pearl founded l’ŒUF (l’Office de l’Éclectisme Urbain et Fonctionnel) with Mark Poddubiuk, where he works mainly in the fields of environmental architecture, urban housing, residential and commercial renovation. Danny is also a professor specializing in architectural research, criticism and theory. For more than seventeen years, l’ŒUF has developed its reputation particularly in the fields of sustainable and environmental architecture. The expertise of the partners is recognized for the architectural quality of their projects, their technical and professional skills and their active participation in the academic, professional and community context. This expertise is always based on the search for a balance between the appropriate technique, the economic feasibility, the architectural expression and the environmental impact of the project.

Danijela Puric-Mladenovic
Associate Professor, Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, University of Toronto; Adjunct Professor, University of Waterloo
Land development based on “with a nature first” approach

Speaker Bio

Danijela is an Associate Professor at the Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design, University of Toronto and adjunct professor at the University of Waterloo. Danijela holds B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Forestry and Landscape Architecture and Planning from the University of Belgrade (Serbia) and a PhD. from the Faculty of Forestry, University of Toronto.

Her research and professional work span from urban, peri-urban to rural landscapes and their interfaces. Her work focuses on conservation, restoration and long-term strategic planning and management of trees, woodlots, forests, green-areas and green systems that: support biodiversity and environmental protection; sustain cultural landscapes, and their urban and rural communities; provide a range of ecological goods and services; and support and enhance human health and wellbeing.

Her work and research are aimed at providing real-world solutions and tools to support strategic conservation, restoration and integrated spatial planning of green areas in settled landscapes. Danijela works closely with diverse stakeholders, partners and community groups engaged in land and natural resources conservation, protection, management and planning.

She teaches graduate, undergraduate and professional development courses in urban forestry and landscape architecture.

Presentation Outline

Urban development at all scales is still based on the outdated principle of “development first, nature after”. This has resulted in the most productive soils and ecosystems being degraded and paved, water runoff intensified, wetlands drained, forest fragments removed, natural vegetation homogenized, and numerous ecosystems and species brought to extinction. These environmental problems have been amplified by climate change impacts.

Under the umbrella of reactive land use policies and existing practices, “nature” is limited to the post-development greening of leftover locations, where trees and vegetation are established in sites of deprived quality.

Plans and designs based on “nature first” require fundamental shifts in policy, culture, professional practice and education, and changes taking place in development from both the bottom up and top-down.

Green, livable and sustainable urban development can be accomplished by conserving and restoring nature within and around cites, and by building new communities that are in synergy with the land and natural environment. A process governed by ecological principles and integrated spatial landscape planning can result in development that operates within the bounds of the natural environment and ensures that each land parcel is an ecological facet of a larger connected, green system.

GBF20 speaker head shot
Dr. Wil Srubar
Associate Professor, University of Colorado Boulder – Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering Program
Carbon-Storing Bio-Architecture
Speaker Bio

Dr. Wil Srubar is an assistant professor of architectural engineering and materials science at the University of Colorado Boulder, where he leads the Living Materials Laboratory. He also serves as Director of Advanced Materials at Katerra and is the Founder and CEO of Minus Materials, a construction biotechnology company located in Boulder Colorado whose mission is to produce high-performance, low-cost building materials with negative carbon footprints.

Dr. Srubar is co-founder and current co-chairman of the Embodied Carbon Network (now CLF Community), a 2000+ member organization of industry professionals dedicated to understanding, quantifying, and reducing embodied carbon in the construction industry.

Dr. Srubar holds a PhD from Stanford University, as well as BS and MS degrees from Texas A&M University and the University of Texas at Austin, respectively.

Presentation Outline

Dr. Srubar’s academic research integrates synthetic biology, polymer science, and cement chemistry to create biomimetic and living material technologies for the built environment. His past and current work includes investigations related to cement chemistry, carbon sequestration, and rapidly renewable carbon-storing materials beyond mass timber (e.g., hempcrete, bioaerogels, natural fiber composites).

A pioneer in the field of Engineered Living Materials, Dr. Srubar’s latest work explores concepts related to “algae architecture” and the feasibility and scalability of “growing” building materials with negative carbon footprints using photosynthetic microorganisms.

His work is is supported by the US National Science Foundation, ARPA-E, and DARPA’s Biological Technologies Office and has appeared in The New York Times, The Conversation, and The Huffington Post.

Steven Ware, Art&Build Architects
Steven Ware
Architect and Partner, Art&Build Architects

Speaker Bio
Born in London and raised in Jamaica, Steven studied biology at Western University and architecture at the Architectural Association. As a partner with Art&Build architects, he steers the development and application of bio-adaptive design principles, seeking new ways to fuse ethics and aesthetics. With decades of design awards behind them, the Europe-based practice features an internal Lab whose teams work with biologists, academics, industrialists and research groups to develop biomimetic concepts which can be transferred to mainstream construction practice. Notable projects include Europe’s largest new healthcare project - Nantes teaching hospital - and dozens of mass timber projects both delivered and under construction across Europe. Steven lectures widely on subjects that bridge biology and the built environment, exploring the very nature of intelligence informing architects and the building sector at large.

2020 Sponsors

Thank you to our valued Green Building Festival sponsors for their support

Platinum Sponsor:

Silver Sponsors:

Bronze Sponsor:

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