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14 great solutions for the commercial construction market

Ideas are cheap. Solutions are what count. The latest installment in BD+C's Great Solutions series presents 14 ways AEC professionals, entrepreneurs, and other clever folk have overcome what seemed to be insoluble problems.

December 29, 2014 |
Photo courtesy Steris

Ideas are cheap. Solutions are what count. The latest installment in BD+C's Great Solutions series presents 14 ways AEC professionals, entrepreneurs, and other clever folk have overcome what seemed to be insoluble problems—from how to make bricks out of agricultural waste, to a new way to keep hospitals running clean during construction. Enjoy!






1. HealthSpot station merges personalized healthcare with videoconferencing

This mobile kiosk lets patients access a network of board-certified physicians through interactive videoconferencing and medical devices. Read the article.




2. From Ag waste to organic brick: Corn stalks reused to make construction materials

Ecovative Design applies its cradle-to-cradle process to produce 10,000 organic bricks used to build a three-tower structure in Long Island City, N.Y. Read the article.




3. Wearable job site management system allows contractors to handle deficiencies with subtle hand and finger gestures

Technology combines a smartglass visual device with a motion-sensing armband to simplify field management work. Read the article.




4. Leo A Daly's minimally invasive approach to remote field site design

For the past six years, Leo A Daly has been designing sites for remote field stations with near-zero ecological disturbance. Read the article.




5. New data-gathering tool for retail designers

Beacon technology personalizes smartphone messaging, creating a new information resource for store designers. Read the article.




6. Reef Worlds to build world’s largest underwater theme park for luxury resort

Dubai is known for its gargantuan commercial building projects. The latest to be proposed is the world’s largest underwater theme park, designed and built by Reef Worlds. Read the article.




7. Clayco lends operational support and financing to construction services startups

Design-build firm Clayco has launched an investment arm called Treehouse Adventures to provide financing and operational infrastructure to startups, including those serving the AEC industry. Read the article.




8. Hard hat equipped with smartglass technology could enhance job site management

Smart Helmet is equipped with an array of cameras that provides 360-degree vision through its glass visor, even in low light. Read the article.




9. Spherical reflectors help spread daylight throughout a college library in Portland, Ore.

The 40,000-sf library is equipped with four “cones of light,” spherical reflectors made from extruded aluminum that distribute daylight from the library’s third floor to illuminate the second. Read the article.




10. Startup Solarbox London turns phone booths into quick-charge stations

About 8,000 of London’s famous red telephone boxes sit unused in warehouses, orphans of the digital age. Two entrepreneurs plan to convert them into charging stations for mobile devices. Read the article.




11. New mobile unit takes the worry out of equipment sterilization during healthcare construction

Infection control, a constant worry for hospital administrators and clinical staffs, is heightened when the hospital is undergoing a major construction project. Mobile Sterilization Solutions, a mobile sterile-processing department, is designed to simplify the task. Read the article.




12. HDR and Hill International to turn three floors of a jail into a modern, secure healthcare center

By bringing healthcare services in house, Dallas County Jail will greatly minimize the security risk and added cost of transferring ill or injured prisoners to a nearby hospital. Read the article.




13. 'Russian nesting doll' design provides unique fire protection solution for movie negatives

A major movie studio needed a new vault to protect its irreplaceable negatives for films released after 1982. SmithGroupJJR came up with a box-in-a-box design solution. Read the article.




14. High-strength aluminum footbridge designed to withstand deep-ocean movement, high wind speeds

The metal’s flexibility makes the difference in an oil rig footbridge connecting platforms in the West Philippine Sea. Read the article.

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