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BAU 2019 Brings Out the Best in Architecture and Building Design

Posted by Sam Keller in Architecture, Blog, Conference on 02/11/2019

Trend Tracking: BAU 2019 Brings Out the Best in Architecture and Building Design

Trends in the building industry don’t usually come and go overnight. It’s about sustainability and passing the test of time.

That was certainly clear at BAU 2019, which is justifiably billed as the world’s leading trade fair for architecture, materials and systems. This is the one event that allows manufacturers to push the envelope and show us what is next. Basically, if you can dream it, someone at BAU is willing to fabricate it.

The biennial event is hosted in Munich, Germany and is massive, with almost 700,000 square feet of exhibition space spread over 15 exhibition halls (our exhibit was in the Glazing Pavilion). Five days was not enough for us to see everything. What we did see is that the trends that grabbed our attention here two years ago are starting to take hold.

There were more exhibitors displaying, as well as architects talking about, large panel formats set within more attenuated framing, curved glazing and new ways to incorporate smart technology into buildings. These approaches, which were emerging concepts two years ago, are becoming very much part of the accepted design mindset.

We were also honored to spend time inside the Aluminum Pavilion with our friends from RAICO Bautechnik GmbH, one of Europe’s leading suppliers of curtain wall systems that is based in Pfaffenhausen, Germany. Their impressive and extensive display featured a wall of Kalwall.

RAICO adapted its THERM+ curtain walling system to Kalwall translucent sandwich panels in the summer of 2017. Their decision to display the product this year speaks to the strength of the partnership and we appreciated the cross promotion.

Finally, as we always do when we are immersed in such an incubator, we bring back ideas of what we can incorporate into our products, whether it is 3D cladding geometries, perforations and meshes, custom finishes, or building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV).

What will be just a dream and what will become the next trend? We are certainly looking forward to BAU 2021 to find out.

Sam Keller is the Creative Director for Kalwall. You can reach him at skeller@kalwall.com.