POSTPONED: COTE – Designing for Zero Waste & Circular Material Flows (1.5 LU/HSW)

“The Circular Building by Arup, copyright Ben Blossom”






Unfortunately due to the health concerns surrounding the Coronavirus, this event will be postponed to later in 2020. We are sorry for the inconvenience.




Waste is a design flaw: in packaging, products, buildings and cities. Ecosystems recycle materials indefinitely in circular loops, but human consumption of materials has quadrupled since 1970 and just hit 100bn tonnes per year . Today’s sustainable architects know they need to design buildings to reduce energy and water usage. They also need to design buildings to reduce operational, construction and demolition waste and to facilitate circular material loops.

The Zero Waste Design Guidelines were developed through a collaborative multidisciplinary process at the AIA New York, to address the crucial role that design plays in achieving zero waste goals. Join Guidelines authors and local experts for a panel discussion on the successes, challenges and opportunities in applying zero waste design strategies to San Francisco’s urban context.


Learning Objectives:

  1. Define the concept of “zero waste design” and describe key benefits for the local and global environment.
  2. Identify key ways that design can reduce material consumption and allow for better segregation of waste streams.
  3. Recall the steps necessary for planning efficient movement of waste materials through a building from segregation to storage to collection.
  4. Summarize the concepts of ‘material passports’ and ‘buildings as material banks’.


About the Speakers:


Clare Miflin, AIA, LEED AP, CPHD, BPro, is an architect and systems thinker with experience designing buildings to the highest environmental standards. At Kiss + Cathcart, Architects she helped develop their concept of “productive” architecture – which provides human, ecological and economic benefits by integrating systems into architecture.
Clare led the development of the Zero Waste Design Guidelines for NYC through a multidisciplinary collaborative process. The Guidelines serve as resource and inspiration for architects and developers to help cities reach their zero waste goals, and are being disseminated and implemented through the Center for Zero Waste Design. Clare has also founded a consultancy – ThinkWoven – to develop strategies to weave urban systems into ecosystems. Clare is co-chair of the AIANY’s Committee on the Environment and a board member of BiomimicryNYC.


Juliette Spertus, trained as an architect and is a consultant on waste systems. She organized the 2010 exhibit Fast Trash: Roosevelt Island’s Pneumatic Tubes and the Future of Cities, which investigates the planned community’s system of trash collection. She is also co-founder of ClosedLoops—a planning firm developed with planning and policy researcher Benjamin Miller—to develop innovative waste and freight infrastructure projects. ClosedLoops co-authored New York City’s Zero Waste Design Guidelines with architect and project lead, Clare Miflin of ThinkWoven, and Christina Grace of Foodprint Group. Juliette is currently working with the New York City Housing Authority to implement their 2019 comprehensive waste management plan.


Eden Bruckman, LEED-AP BD+C, is the Senior Green Building Coordinator at San Francisco Department of the Environment. Since 1996, Eden has focused on establishing socially and environmentally responsible solutions for human habitat: she coauthored Living Building Challenge and directed its evolution and global deployment from 2007-2012; served as the first Technical Director of the Health Product Declaration Collaborative; and contributed to the early development of other programs such as Declare, the Pharos Project, and EcoDistricts. Also licensed architect, Eden’s advocacy efforts have led to policy reform, decentralized building and community developments, and the creation of a network of local action groups in cities all over the world.


Marcus Hopper, AIA, NCARB, LEED ID+C, is the Northwest Regional Design Management leader for Gensler. With a depth of experience in workplace environments, his diverse portfolio spans: Financial Services, Media, Not-For-Profit, Professional Services, Science and Technology industries. As a licensed architect, Marcus is passionate about design’s capacity to shape the built environment with creativity, environmental conscientiousness and material sustainability. He has contributed to Gensler’s Design Resilience team that completed high profile projects for Etsy in New York City and the NRDC space in San Francisco. In 2018, he was part of a research team that studied five Gensler offices that had recently undergone renovation to see how reused materials played a role. The goal of the research was to bring awareness to the circular economy and identify how the industry can bolster and encourage reuse processes within design work. Findings from this initial study were published in the Gensler Research Institute white paper, What’s Old is New Again – Circumnavigating the Circular Economy.


Pricing + Registration

  • General Public: $15
  • AIA Member: $10
  • Student Allied: $5


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