Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat
CTBUH UK: ExportingTall
Monday, 30 April 2018

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On Monday, April 30 the CTBUH United Kingdom Chapter held the event “Exporting Tall,” hosted by Arup at their central London headquarters. The event aimed to enlighten on the challenges and opportunities of designing tall buildings in countries outside the UK.

The evening featured presentations from William Algaard, Structural Director and Tall Building Leader, Arup; Jonas Upton-Hansen, Founder and Architect, UHA London; and Lawrie Nisbet, Managing Director and Lighting Architect, LDPi. The presentations were followed by an interesting and discursive Q&A session.

William Algaard began by using three recent projects to highlight the unique challenges posed by designing abroad. He expressed that a successful project fundamentally relies on close collaboration with local partners and that international firms are there to add value. This added value was demonstrated on tall building projects in Mexico (Torre BBVA), Colombia (ATRIO) and Taiwan, all of which are under construction or completed.

Jonas Upton-Hansen continued the discussion, focusing on recent projects in India. He highlighted the opportunities that emerging markets provide for smaller practices, allowing them to work on much large projects than the local market. However, the challenges of the working environment, including local code provisions (especially with respect to daylighting and natural ventilation) often force the design away from what might be done closer to home.

Lawrie Nisbet concluded the formal presentations for the evening. Lawrie spoke about the influence of the local surroundings on a project and about the difficulties in influencing a client’s preconceptions on how they envision their project.

The questions prompted interesting discussions on the payback of working abroad and emphasised the importance of having strong local collaborators.

The pre- and post-presentation networking drinks provided a platform for further discussion on building tall as well as getting to know one another.

The next event will be hosted by NBBJ architects and will focus on the influence sight lines have on the design of tall buildings in London.


Dinesh Makwana AECOM
Daniel Skidmore AECOM
Haydn Thomas Allford Hall Monaghan Morris
Chris Lalies alinea Consulting
William Algaard Arup
Andrew Allsop Arup
Darren Barlow Arup
Simon Bateman Arup
Mark Bowers Arup
Chris Carroll Arup
Chris Clarke Arup
Tom Clewlow Arup
Marc Easton Arup
Ioanna Gati Arup
Orlando Gibbons Arup
Anna Krumbien Arup
Steve McKechnie Arup
Andy Pye Arup
Simon Ziegler Blackland Capital
Darius Cheong Careys Civil Engineering
Bashar Safa Careys Civil Engineering
Samuel Wong Careys Civil Engineering
Neil Campbell ChapmanBDSP
Shashank Jain ChapmanBDSP
Julie Futcher Climate 22
Graham Barker Cundall
Marco Sciacca Curtins
John Crack CW Contractors
Vicki Ryan d2r
Giorgio Carlo Roberto Albieri Davies Maguire + Whitby
Dennis Teoh Foster + Partners
Javier Quintana IDOM
Lily Zadek IDOM
Peter Palfrey Langan
Lynne Connelly Lighting Design Partnership
Matthew Gough Mace
Giovanni Gori Maffeis Engineering
Shahram Hemmati MLM Group
Filip Kirazov Mott MacDonald Group
Sam Heyes Multiplex
Narjes Jafari Multiplex
Cheyenne Chong NBBJ
Nereo Giavazzi Newtechnic
Opas Klinheim PlaceBuilder Architects
Mick Ward PlaceBuilder Architects
Marianna Micallef Robert Bird Group
Stephan Reinke SCR Architects
Rafail Bakolas SOM
Dmitri Jajich SOM
Timo Kujala SOM
Ricardo Mateu UHA London
Gioncalo Pinheiro UHA London
Jonas Upton-hansen UHA London
Damiano Rizzini Zaha Hadid Architects
Alan Attride
Krystal Cao
Paula Cerro
Natalia Maslenhikova
Dan Paigge