Return to site home page


CEOs Announce Major Commitment to Promote Resilient Planning, Building Materials

CEOs of almost two dozen leading design and construction industry associations, with more than 700,000 members generating almost $1 trillion in GDP, used “Building Safety Month” to issue a joint statement on resilience.


CEOs of almost two dozen leading design and construction industry associations, with more than 700,000 members generating almost $1 trillion in GDP, used “Building Safety Month” to issue a joint statement on resilience.


Leaders of America’s design and construction industry—along with building owners and operators—for the first time have agreed to promote resilience in contemporary planning, building materials, design, construction, and operational techniques as the solution to making the nation’s aging infrastructure more safe and secure.

CEOs of almost two dozen leading design and construction industry associations, with more than 700,000 members generating almost $1 trillion in GDP, used “Building Safety Month” to issue a joint statement on resilience. The statement was unveiled at a press conference at the National Building Museum during the opening of a major exhibition, “Designing for Disaster,” which presents design and building solutions for disaster mitigation.

“We recognize that natural and manmade hazards pose an increasing threat to the safety of the public and the vitality of our nation,” read the statement, in part. “We further recognize that contemporary planning, building materials, design, construction, and operational techniques can make our communities more resilient to these threats.” 

The CEOs committed their design and construction sector organizations to significantly improve the resilience of the nation’s entire built environment through research into new materials, construction procedures, and other methods to raise the standard of practice. They also committed the industry to educating itself through continuous learning, advocating for effective land use policies, responding to disasters alongside first responders, and planning for future events with a strategy for fast recovery.

“I encourage interior designers to lead the way in improving the resiliency of our communities against disaster,” said Randy Fiser, executive vice president and CEO of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID). “ASID will make resiliency a priority going forward and will work with our industry colleagues to ensure more organizations adopt this approach.”


Product Spotlight: CasaBubble

Created in California by French designer Frederic Richard, CasaBubble brings a childhood dream to life—spending the night under the Milky Way.

For aesthetic and comfort reasons, the structure is kept to a minimum, giving users the feeling of being in a cocoon. The bubbles are held in shape thanks to inside positive pressure, delivered by an ultra-quiet turbine. A vestibule ensures the bubble stays inflated at all times.

The bubbles are made out of 100 percent recyclable PVC. Plus, since they are structure-less, the amount of material needed to manufacture the bubbles is very limited. Each bubble is connectable on two sides, so there is no limit to the type of structure that can be created.

Radical Cities: Across Latin America in Search of a New Architecture

In Radical Cities, Justin McGuirk takes us on an epic tour of Latin America, taking in the radical wave of "informal architecture" cropping up in Argentina, Chile, Peru, Brazil, Venezuela, Colombia, and Mexico. Searching out activist architects, maverick politicians, and radical communities, he discovers the people and ideas shaping the way cities are evolving.

By combating the usual narrative of slums and favelas ravaged by internal conflict and violence, McGuirk reveals a crucible of radical architectural and urban innovation.

The domes are available in various models, ranging from 9 to 26 feet wide. Currently, CasaBubble is developing a rental facility for event and meeting professionals interested in using the bubble for product launches, street marketing events, art or corporate exhibits, and VIP receptions.

NeoCon 2014 Sees Strong Results From Annual Show

Held June 9 to 11, the 46th edition of NeoCon was a resounding success, delivering a fully immersive commercial design experience that went above and beyond, illuminating cross-industry societal, economic, and psychological trends.

With attendance up 20 percent, the halls of Chicago’s Merchandise Mart were buzzing with specifiers, facility managers, manufacturers, clients, and media from across North America and around the globe. Close to 50,000 industry professionals gathered to see the latest product introductions for commercial design, to network with industry peers, and to take advantage of the stellar line-up of keynote and educational offerings.

“This year’s show really brought out the best the industry has to offer,” said Byron Morton, VP Leasing at the Merchandise Mart. “From cutting edge technology to a complete re-imagination of traditional office environments, innovation was at the forefront. Businesses, large and small, get the importance of design, and the attendance at NeoCon 2014 is a testament to that. Our permanent and temporary exhibitors responded to the uptick in the economy with creative solutions for key vertical markets from office to education, hospitality, and healthcare. Solutions on display at NeoCon focused on employee well being as well productivity.” Next year’s show will take place June 15 to 17, 2015.

IIDA Inducts Julio Braga as 2014-15 President

The International Interior Design Association (IIDA) announced the installation of its new president for 2014-2015, Julio Braga, IIDA, LEED AP, design principal, IA Interior Architects, and the election of current Vice President Scott Hierlinger, IIDA, design director, Nelson, as president-elect for the 2015-2016 year.

Marlene Liriano, IIDA, LEED AP ID+C, vice president and director of interior design, HOK, was elected to the International Board of Directors. Julio succeeds Past-President Felice Silverman, FIIDA, founder and principal, Silverman Trykowski Associates Inc., who retains a seat as vice president. All four were inducted at the IIDA Annual Meeting held June 8, 2014, at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago.

“Julio’s international experience and unwavering commitment to commercial interior design make him an ideal candidate to lead IIDA into its next 20 years,” IIDA Executive Vice President and CEO Cheryl S. Durst, Hon. FIIDA, LEED AP, said, noting the organization’s 20th anniversary this year. “Likewise, the ongoing dedication of Scott, Marlene, and Felice to the profession, and their vast collective industry experience give them the instinct and insight needed to make outstanding contributions to the IIDA International Board in the next year, and we look forward to their input in advancing IIDA and the interior design profession worldwide.”


In Memoriam: Former ASID National President Bruce James Brigham

Acclaimed interior designer and former American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) President Bruce James Brigham, FASID, ISP, IES, died July 8, 2014. He was 63.

An award-winning interior designer and industry leader, Brigham was regarded as a pioneer in retail branding and design. His more than 400 design projects spanned the globe and ranged from the redesign of 180 Cartier boutiques worldwide and the retail designs for TSL Jewellery in Hong Kong to the remodeling of the Seattle SuperSonics Courtside Club.

Brigham was an ASID Fellow and served as president of the ASID Board of Directors from 2008 to 2009. He also was a member of the Institute of Store Planners (ISP) and the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES). A 1973 graduate of Williams College, Brigham served as the managing principal of Planet Retail Studios in Seattle before opening his own consulting firm, Retail Clarity Consulting. An accomplished writer and speaker, he was a frequent contributor to various design and industry publications and often was called upon to share his design expertise at conferences and trade shows including NeoCon, Surfaces, and the ASID National Conference.

“Bruce was an inspiration to many at ASID,” said Randy Fiser, ASID executive vice president and CEO. “One of his favorite expressions — ‘Who remembers anything ordinary’ — is one we use often. It exemplifies the passion for living he shared with everyone around him. During his tenure as ASID president, he pushed the Society to be extraordinary and for that we are indebted to him.”