New York — The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat’s 2015 International Conference, will address the resurgence of skyscrapers in major cities around the world. As part of the conference, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff is offering a series of sessions on the Impact of Skyscraper Development in New York City, focusing on the newest tall buildings recently completed and under construction, many with structural systems designed by the firm. The program includes:

Monday, October 26

11:10 – 11:15

  • Welcome — David Cooper, President of Buildings, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, USA

11:15 – 12:15

  • Hudson Yards: Infrastructure Driving Urban Verticality — Greg Kelly, President and CEO, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff USA
  • Hudson Yards: Creating New York’s Next Great Neighborhood — Andrew Cantor, Vice President of Development, Related Companies, USA
  • 55 Hudson Yards: Soaring above the Subway — Jeff Smilow, EVP of Building Structures, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, USA

2:30 – 3:15

  • Engineering an Icon: How One World Trade Center Redefined Structural Engineering and Recreated an Icon For New York — Ahmad Rahimian, Director of Building Structures, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, USA and Yoram Eilon, SVP of Building Structures, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, USA

Tuesday, October 27

11:15 – 11:45

  • Welcome — Silvian Marcus, Director of Building Structures, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, USA

11:15 – 11:45

  • 432 Park Avenue: Engineering in the Sky — Hezi Mena, SVP Building Structures, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, USA and Gary Pomerantz, EVP Building Services, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, USA

11:45 – 12:15

  • MoMA Tower: Developing a New Landmark for New York — David Penick, Managing Director, Hines, New York, USA

12:15 – 12:45

  • How to Make a Manhattan Skyscraper: 111 West 57th Street — Dana Getman, Lead Project Architect, SHoP Associates, New York, USA

Thornton Tomasetti’s Dennis Poon, Eli Gottlieb, John Peronto, Jianhai Liang, Gunnar Hubbard and Edward Peck also will be presenting at the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat 2015 International Conference in Manhattan.

As part of the Technological Advances in Asia session, Poon will discuss the Chengdu Dongcun Greenland Tower. His presentation, “Designing a Non-coplanar Exoskeleton Supertall Tower that Transforms the Skyline of Chengdu,” will look at how the 468-meter, mixed-use main tower adopts a non-coplanar 3-D exoskeleton system, which integrates columns that zigzag along the height of the tower and steel mega-braces on the edges of the surface facets. 

The conference will also feature a series of Host Room sessions that are open to the public. In the Land Development Engineering and Super High-Rise Foundations Host Room, Gottlieb will participate in the panel discussion “Creating Real Estate from Thin Air: Hudson Yards” along with George Leventis and Marc Gallagher of Langan International, Anthony Mocelli of KPF, and The Related Companies’ Michael Samuelian.

As part of the Tall Building Materials Systems Host Room, Peronto will talk about the newest addition to the Los Angeles skyline in the session “Wilshire Grand Center: Practical Application of Performance Based Design.” Meanwhile, Liang will give the presentation “Skyscraper Structure System Comparison in High Seismic Zone in China.”

Hubbard will discuss “FORMulating High Performance Towers: Envelope Shape, Tectonics and Functionality,” as part of the Tall Building Development Trends Host Room, where presentations will focus on trends in sustainable design and technologies.

Peck will present on the “Myths and Tales of Transparency: Bringing Clarity to Emergent Façade Technology” panel, which is part of the Tall Building Façade Host Room. The discussion will explore the innovative façade materials and systems, including ETFE, and will be followed by a Q&A session.

Registration for this year’s conference is sold out. However, the Host Room programs are still open and attendance is free. For more information, visit the conference website at