Four sessions focused on design build are being offered for free at the AHR Expo as part of the ASHRAE 2016 Winter Conference.

The conference takes place Jan. 23-27 at the Orlando Hilton, while the ASHRAE co-sponsored AHR Expo takes place Jan. 25-27, next door at the Orange County Convention Center. To register for the ASHRAE Conference, which includes free access to the expo, visit Information about the expo can be found at

The technical program features eight tracks, some 100 sessions, and more than 300 speakers. It runs Sunday, Jan. 24 through Wednesday, Jan. 27, and offers over 200 Professional Development Hours, as well as Continuing Education Units, which can be applied toward a Professional Engineering license in many states, including the state of Florida.

Four sessions are being offered at no cost at the AHR Expo. The three seminars and one workshop are all part of the Design Build track.

“ASHRAE is always looking for opportunities to improve the technical program, and at the same time, to include the theme of the society president,” said Jennifer Leach, conference chair. “ASHRAE President David Underwood spent much of his career as a design-build contractor and suggested the Design Build track. Offering these programs at the expo is a win-win given its close proximity to ASHRAE conference at the hotel next door. ASHRAE gets an opportunity to reach out to its contractor members and engineers now have another reason to attend the expo.”

The sessions are:

• “Don't Call it a Comeback! The New and Improved Design-Build Survival Guide,” 11 a.m.- noon, Tuesday, Jan. 26. ASHRAE published its Survival Guide to Design-Build in 2004. Since that time, the design build delivery method has gained steam. In this seminar, speakers provide a first look at the new, improved, survival guide.

• “Avoiding Pesky Pitfalls Integrating Seismic and Sound Control,” 1-2 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 26.  This session addresses the advantage of integrating seismic compliance and sound control early in the design build process. Design of building systems for seismic, wind, sound, and vibration control generally occurs later in the project, with the feeling that it is not essential to the design of the HVAC, controls, electrical, or other system. However, when this seemingly non-essential item is overlooked, the cost to meet code compliance and/or owner demands often becomes more than budgeted. Speakers discuss how to avoid these pitfalls.

• “Design-Build for DDC: Yes, It Works! No, It Doesn’t! A Healthy Debate by Two Experts," 2:30-3:30 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 26. Those who recommend design build for every situation need to be careful. When it comes to DDC, design build may not be the best solution. Some general contractors claim that the controls subcontractor is no different than the drywall subcontractor, and if a design build delivery method works for one, it should work for all. One speaker in this session feels strongly that a design build scenario is the best solution for today’s DDC systems, while the other speaker begs to differ.

• “How Does the Criterion Engineer’s Role Affect the Design Build Contractor’s and Design Build Engineer’s Roles during All Phases of a Design Build Project?,” 3:45-5:15 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 26. Building owners often retain a criterion engineer to establish the initial design criteria for a project. The engineer creates documents that are handed off to a design build contractor. After this, the role of the engineer can vary. This seminar discusses issues that can arise as the owner and design build contractor interpret the bridging documents and how open or closed a line of communication is with the engineer during all phases of a design build project.