Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat
Vertical Futures: Technologies to Shape our Cities

Project Started: November 2015
Anticipated Project Completion: October 2016
Funding Sponsor: Turner Construction via the Henry C. Turner Prize
Principal Investigator:
David Malott, CTBUH Chairman; Principal at KPF
Co-Principal Investigator:
Dr. Dario Trabucco, CTBUH

The “Vertical Futures” research project was made possible thanks to the prestigious 2015 Henry C. Turner Prize for Innovation in Construction, which was bestowed to the CTBUH in recognition of “the Council’s history of supporting and facilitating research and promoting education on a wide variety of topics relating to the planning, design, and construction of tall, supertall, and megatall building projects as well as the impact of those buildings on the urban landscape.”

Funding Sponsor

Project Milestones
2016, April: Call for Ideas Launched
2016, March: Project Announcement

Upon receiving the $25,000 prize, CTBUH Chairman and Principal at Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates (KPF) David Malott and CTBUH Executive Director Antony Wood agreed that this honorarium would be used by the Council to conduct an audit of the cutting-edge technologies across all fields that contribute to tall buildings.

The research project is led by David Malott, with support from Research Assistant Jordan Feinstein – who was hired specifically for the task – and CTBUH Research Manager Dario Trabucco.

The team, with input from a steering committee composed of numerous innovation experts, will build a foundation for the research by issuing a questionnaire that aims to identify the most promising innovations in the future of tall buildings.

This research will conduct an audit of the cutting-edge technologies that contribute to tall buildings and future cities, including but not limited to: smart infrastructure, material innovations, and augmented reality.
Continuous global activity in the tall building industry has required nearly every technical solution and component to reinvent itself, such that the typology continues to evolve with emerging needs in the market and a growing awareness for sustainability and social responsibility. Additionally, the visibility and magnitude of tall building projects make them models for the architecture world at large, where innovations at height are transferred and made available to all sectors, from the single-family home to large infrastructure projects.

As such, the goal of this research is to create a positional paper that would provide guidance for those in the tall building industry who want to be drivers of the next generation of tall buildings. This output will enable a multi-disciplinary awareness of innovative technologies in each field, so that teams can appropriately plan for and implement these systems into their designs.

Contact Information
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