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2015 Bay Area Wood Solutions Fair

January 27, 2015 – 8:00 am - 5:00 pm


Oakland, CAOakland, CA


Wood Solutions Fairs are FREE multi-faceted, day-long educational events on the use of wood in non-residential and multi-family buildings.

Attendees can earn up to 6 AIA/CES LUs (HSW) or PDH credits (one per attended seminar).  AIA/CES forms and professional development certificates will be available on site.

Click here to download the event brochure.




Building Enclosure Design: Best Practices for Wood-Frame Buildings
Colin Shane, MEng, PEng, RDH Building Sciences Inc.

Through a combination of building science fundamentals, case studies and current research, this presentation will explore best practices for designing durable, energy-efficient building enclosures for mid-rise buildings constructed using traditional light wood-frame construction. Differences in enclosure design associated with taller wood-frame buildings using mass timber products will also be discussed.

Colin Shane is a Senior Project Engineer at the San Francisco Bay Area office of RDH Building Sciences, Inc., an engineering consulting firm dedicated to building science and building enclosure engineering.  Colin’s experience includes design of all components of the building enclosure, including walls, glazing systems, balconies and roofs in climate zones across North America. Colin has a broad knowledge of building construction and applies building science principles to evaluate, analyze and design durable, energy-efficient building enclosures. He holds a Master’s degree in Civil/Structural Engineering from the University of Waterloo.


Urban Acoustics
Steve Thorburn, PE, LEED AP, CTS-I, CTS-D, Thorburn Associates

As with any issue of building performance, the acoustics of a mixed-use wood-frame structure can be designed to meet or far exceed minimal requirements. It is the responsibility of the design team to determine acoustical expectations for the project and meet them within the available budget. Through the use of case studies, this fast-paced, interactive session will explore how multi-story wood systems can be used to meet acoustical privacy goals. Discussion will focus on the detailing and construction of units, and how consideration of the construction process can help keep acoustical costs down. With the objective of providing implementable solutions, the session will include construction details and photos showing what has and hasn’t worked in actual buildings.

Principal Consultant with Thorburn Associates, Steve enjoys helping others understand the principals of acoustics and audiovisual technology. His dual degrees in electrical engineering and technical theatre give him a balanced left brain/right brain approach to project solutions. In addition to experience on more than 2,800 projects, he is an author and teacher, a past INFOCOMM Educator of the Year, and recipient of two International Communications Industries Association Facility Design Awards. He routinely speaks and writes for the AEC industry on acoustical issues.


The Evolution of Fire Life Safety in Building Codes
Peter Senez, MEng, PEng, Sereca

Over the last 80 years, prescriptive height and area limitations have remained relatively unchanged in North American building codes while technological advances and fire service capabilities have improved considerably. Through an examination of historical code development and identification of the risk factors on which codes are based, we can set the stage for a re-examination of public perception with regard to combustible construction. This presentation will cover techniques for mitigating fire damage and reducing fire spread while describing how an understanding of code intent can be used to demonstrate equivalent fire performance when wood solutions lie outside typical code-approved applications.

Peter Senez is an experienced and well-respected authority in the field of fire engineering. Active in the fire industry for over 20 years, Mr. Senez has diverse and unique industry experience. He has managed large construction projects, implemented fire research programs, coordinated fire test programs, worked as a fire fighter and analyzed hundreds of real fires. He understands fire science and technologies, and is skilled at interpreting codes, analyzing failures, developing risk assessments, gauging the probability of failures, and explaining the dynamics of fire. He is well travelled, in service to Sereca’s international client base, and is an author and frequent lecturer on the subjects of heat transfer, fire growth, combustion dynamics, computer fire modelling, and sources of ignition. Mr Senez actively participates on many industry committees.



Mass Timber Building Systems: Understanding the Options
Bernhard Gafner, PEng, MIStructE, CEng, Dipl. Ing., Fast + Epp

Mass timber represents an emerging and rapidly advancing technology that can be utilized as an alternative to steel and concrete to frame a variety of mid- and high-rise building types. This presentation will provide an overview of different mass timber systems available, with an emphasis on their advantages and unique design considerations. Topics will include connections and fasteners, which differ from those used in light-frame wood construction, including available options and code requirements. Cost estimating will also be discussed, as successful mass timber projects require a complete understanding of both the system itself and impact on other trades. A comparison of mass timber costs compared to steel and concrete based on a recent case study will also be presented.

Bernhard has over nine years of international experience in Canada, Germany and Switzerland. He has a degree in Timber Engineering from Bern University of Applied Sciences, Switzerland, and is a Member of the Associate of Professional Engineers in BC and is a Chartered Member of the Institution of Structural Engineers UK. He offers a unique skill set in the field of structural engineering due to his hands-on experience as licensed carpenter. While having an expertise in timber engineering, Bernhard is proficient in all major building materials. He believes in using the right material for the right project. He has an excellent track record in developing concepts for structural systems and connection details—creating innovative and cost efficient solutions.


Building as Teacher: Designing with Nature
Randall Walter, AIA, LEED AP, Bensonwood

Built and opened to students in 2012, Burr and Burton Academy’s Mountain Campus is an innovative model for place-based environmental education. From campus and building design and construction to curriculum design, topics will include concepts that helped the campus achieve “net zero” targets, biophilic wood-based design inspirations, student experiences monitoring the building’s energy performance, living in and caring for the space, and the ripple effects of student experiences during the first two years of operation.

Randall Walter, AIA, LEED AP, is an award-winning architect and Company Steward of the design/build firm, Bensonwood. From high-performance homes to schools, restaurants, studios and barns, Randall has created over 200 custom buildings throughout the US. Randall earned a Bachelor of Architecture and French from Carnegie Mellon University in 1992. He is an adjunct professor of Architecture at Keene State College, teaching design studios, architectural history and a biennial design/build practicum.


Forests and Forest Products
Kathryn Fernholz, Dovetail Partners, Inc.

This presentation will answer many questions about forests and forest products, such as: Where do our trees and forests grow? How have forests changed over time? What is the relationship between people and forests–now and in the past? How are forests managed–and are they being managed responsibly? Are our forests and forest products sustainable? Why is wood an environmental-friendly choice?

Executive Director of Dovetail Partners, Inc., Kathryn Fernholz is a forester by training and has worked on development and forest management issues in a wide range of roles. With a consulting firm, her work included natural resource inventories, comprehensive planning, environmental impact assessments and the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). While working for the Community Forestry Resource Center, she developed and managed a group certification project for family forests and worked to increase local capacity to provide forest management and marketing services that are compatible with certification standards. She is also an experienced Forest Management Certification Lead Auditor. Kathryn has a BS in Forest Resources from the University of Minnesota, College of Natural Resources.



Streamline with Factory-Built Multi-Family Housing
Regan Martin, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Lowney Architecture
Taeko Takagi, ZETA Design+Build

While off-site modular construction has been around for decades at the lower end of the single-family housing market; changing economics, market conditions and advancements in design are combining to make it an attractive option for multi-family development. Although the choice to use on-site wood framing versus prefabrication depends on many factors, modular construction can offer a number of advantages, including faster construction, improved material efficiency and worker safety, enhanced quality assurance, and reduced material, labor and interest costs. This presentation will connect fabrication with architecture by showcasing recent projects at various stages with an emphasis on the benefits and challenges associated with their modular systems.

Regan Martin is a practicing California-licensed Architect with 14 years of experience focused on design development and project delivery on a wide range of building types. He joined Lowney Architecture in 2012 to extend the firm’s deep factory-built project expertise. He now leads internal workflow process development and training seminars, and collaboration initiatives with fabrication partners. Regan presented at GreenBuild in 2012 and is a past board member of AIA San Francisco. He received his Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Texas at Austin.

Taeko Takagi has been a designer and product developer for nearly 20 years and has specialty experience in real estate development, construction document preparation, and project management. Her extensive knowledge of a wide range of architecture practices has led her to specialize in sustainable housing—including affordable, mixed-use, senior, urban infill and custom homes. After working with the award-winning firm, David Baker + Partners Architects, she founded 49Mile Design and Development in 2005 to specialize in sustainable architecture and real estate development. Among her recent projects, Ms.Takagi created the first LEED Gold-certified homes in downtown Sacramento, California.


The Application of Traditional and Modern Heavy Timber Connections
R.L. “Ben” Brungraber, PhD, PE, Fire Tower Engineered Timber

The selection of heavy timber connections can be challenging, even for designers experienced with these types of building projects. This presentation will provide a thorough discussion of traditional and modern heavy timber connectors and connections, including their design and application. Topics will include some of the connection types and methods used to repair or reinforce existing heavy timber members, such as wooden pegs, wooden wedges, and fully-threaded screws. Discussion will also include a review of European connectors and their selection for specific design applications including cross laminated timber.

Ben Brungraber has a Master of Science from Colorado State University in Timber Structures and a PhD in Mortise and Tenon Joinery from Stanford, which to his clients’ collective relief, explains the nickname Dr. Joint. Before partnering in his own design and engineering firm, Fire Tower Engineered Timber, he taught at the University of Connecticut and worked as an engineer for Benson Woodworking Co. He has also served on the Board of Directors of the Timber Frame Guild of North America.


Significant Changes to AWC’s 2015 NDS® and the 2015 SDPWS
Michelle Kam-Biron, PE, SE, SECB, M. ASCE, American Wood Council (AWC)

AWC’s 2015 National Design Specification® (NDS®) for Wood Construction and Special Design Provisions for Wind and Seismic (SDPWS) standards are referenced in US building codes and used to design wood structures worldwide. The current editions, designated ANSI/AWC NDS-2015 and ANSI/AWC SDPWS-2015, were approved as ANSI American National Standards in 2014. This presentation will provide an overview of changes in the 2015 NDS and SDPWS relative to previous editions. Significant changes relate to the incorporation of cross laminated timber, open front diaphragms and cantilever diaphragms.

Michelle Kam-Biron is a California licensed structural engineer and Director of Education for the AWC where she oversees and develops continuing educational resources related to structural wood for architects, engineers, and code officials. Prior to joining AWC, she worked for nearly five years in the wood industry as the Senior Technical Director—National Lead Mid-rise/Multi-family Construction for the Wood Products Council initiative WoodWorks. She also has over 20 years of experience managing, designing and plan reviewing a wide range of projects of various structural materials. Ms. Kam-Biron graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with a BS in Architectural Engineering and is President-elect of the Structural Engineers Association of Southern California.



Title 24: Energy Code Compliance in Modern Buildings
Andrew Klein, PE, CEM, A S Klein Engineering, PLLC

This presentation focuses on the challenges of meeting requirements of the 2013 California Building Energy Efficiency Standards (Title 24) in modern buildings, with an emphasis on wood-frame construction. Topics will include scope, content and significant changes since the previous edition. Compliance path options will also be discussed in the context of specific building systems and features as well as related design considerations. Requirements in the national model code, the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), will also be briefly reviewed.

Andrew Klein, PE, is the principal of A S Klein Engineering, PLLC, a professional engineering firm located in Pasco, WA. As a Chemical Engineer, Andrew’s career began with plans examinations and inspections for code compliance of high-hazard occupancies and the processes and storage that occur within them. As energy management grew as a primary focus of facility managers and developers, Andrew’s responsibilities expanded to include energy code compliance. Now a Certified Energy Manager, he has helped facilities understand and manage their energy costs as well as obtain compliance with applicable energy codes and desired above-code programs. Andrew is involved in national-level committee work and code development with the International Code Council, National Fire Protection Association and the International Association of Plumbing and Manufacturing Officials.


LEED v4 and Credits for Wood Use
Dr. Jim Bowyer, Dovetail Partners, Inc., Bowyer & Associates, Inc.

This presentation examines changes in the latest version of LEED (LEED v4) and their implications for wood use. Particular attention is given to the Materials and Resources section of the standard, where the greatest changes have been made. Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) and Health Product Declarations (HPDs)—both of which are prominent within LEED v4—are explained, and their use, as well as potential issues associated with their use, are discussed.

Dr. Jim Bowyer is Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering. He is Director of the Sustainable Materials Program at Dovetail Partners, Inc., a non-profit organization that provides authoritative information about the impacts and trade-offs of environmental decisions, and President of Bowyer & Associates, Inc., a consulting firm dedicated to improving the environmental performance of organizations of all kinds.


Getting to Yes: Code Alternate Materials and Means and Permit Streamlining
Michael F. Malinowski, AIA, Applied Architecture, Inc.

This session will cover principles and strategy for effective navigation of the building permit process when materials or designs don’t comfortably fit with conventional code application, as well as the use of permit streamlining for more effective and efficient processing. Alternate Materials and Means Requests (AMMR) can be used for various reasons including: use of innovative products and systems, new design concepts, complex geometries, code conundrums, political problem solving and the resolution of interpretation differences. Project examples will be used to demonstrate how to approach the AMMR process and demystify the concept of an alternate design. Permit streamlining concepts will also be discussed.

Michael F. Malinowski has been providing adaptive historic re-use, urban infill, affordable housing, single family residential, and commercial revitalization design solutions for 34 years as principal of Applied Architecture Inc., Sacramento CA. Mike has been active with Permit Streamlining for nearly two decades; including Chair of the City of Sacramento’s Development Oversight Commission. During Mike’s tenure the City went from dead last in regional customer surveys to number one. He has also served on the Preservation Board, Design Review Boards, and in AIA leadership for decades, presently a member of the National Board of Directors. In 2012, Mike launched a PermitStreamline.Com to support and promote the leadership role of architects across the country in implementing streamlining measures appropriate to their local communities, complementing his public speaking on the topic in cities across the country.



Seismic and Wind Design Considerations for Wood-Frame Shear Walls
Karyn Beebe, PE, LEED AP, APA

The overall strength of a building is a function of all of the components—roof, walls, floors, and foundation—working together as a unit. This session will provide a top-to-bottom overview of lateral design for wood-frame structures with a focus on shear walls. Topics will include lessons learned from natural disasters, load path continuity, and updates to the California Building Code affecting structural design. Alternatives to segmented shear wall design will also be compared, including the perforated and force transfer around opening (FTAO) methods.

Karyn Beebe is an APA Engineered Wood Specialist serving the Southwest. A licensed Professional Engineer in the state of California, Beebe graduated from Purdue University with a BS in Civil Engineering. Her duties include consulting with designers on the efficient specification of engineered wood products in construction. She is an active member of the Structural Engineers Association, the U.S. Green Building Council, and serves as Past President for the San Diego Area Chapter of the ICC. Prior to joining APA, Beebe worked as a structural engineer and structural plan reviewer for the San Diego building department.


California Building Code Height and Area Provisions
Dennis Richardson, PE, CBO, CASp, AWC

This presentation will provide an overview of height and area provisions found in the 2013 California Building Code (CBC) including State Fire Marshal (SFM) amendments. Intended for engineers, architects and building officials who want to better understand the opportunities for wood in a variety of building types, it will include an overview of the publication, Code Conforming Wood Design (CCWD), published by AWC and used to quickly compute allowable heights and areas for B, F, S, and M occupancy group buildings. Discussion will also include a review of 2013 CBC SFM amendments and their effect on common occupancy groups, relevant changes to the 2015 International Building Code, and the process leading to the upcoming 2016 CBC.

Dennis Richardson, PE, CBO is the West Coast Regional Manager for the AWC, which produces recognized design standards such as the NDS for Wood Construction. He is a professional engineer with over 25 years of building department experience including serving as the Building Official for the cities of: Santa Rosa, Sacramento, San Jose and Salinas. Dennis has several years of private sector structural design experience and has been active on code development efforts including the Balanced Fire Protection / Height and Area Study Group and the California State Fire Marshal Code Adoption Core Committee. Dennis is a Past President of the Peninsula Chapter of ICC.


Sustainable Designs: Western Red Cedar
Paul Mackie, Western Red Cedar Lumber Association

This presentation will include some information basic to lumber and forest products while it features the nature of the Western Red Cedar lumber, the benefits unique to these products, and how they are appropriate for incorporation in any sustainable design. The presentation will also touch on information about western red cedar lumber grades, installation, and finishing. Forest Certification will be discussed, as will reasons why using Western Red Cedar affords your clients the best environmental and sustainable products for their design requirements.

Paul Mackie is the Western Area Manager for the Western Red Cedar Lumber Association. Known as “Mr. Cedar,” he is a fourth-generation lumberman and one of North America’s foremost authorities on western red cedar as a building material.

Oakland Marriott City Center
1001 Broadway
Oakland, CA 94607
(510) 451-4000

Click here for Parking, Metro and Directions.  The Oakland Marriott City Center offers a 30% Discount on Self Parking Rates — $17.50 per day.

Click here to view or download presentations from the Bay Area Wood Solutions Fair.

For questions or additional information, please contact Jaime Krohn at or 312-841-8272.


27 January 2015
8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Event Category:


Oakland Marriott City Center
1001 Broadway

Oakland, CA 94607 United States

WoodWorks offers a wide range of in-person and online training opportunities, from Wood Design Symposiums that include concurrent seminars and a trade show, to half-day workshops, lunchtime seminars and webinars.