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Rackemann Attorney Hosts Group Seeking To Bring an International Building Expo to Boston

Rackemann attorney Lauren Armstrong recently hosted a meeting of a working group seeking to bring a large scale International Building Exhibition to Boston.

The members of the group were initially inspired to explore the possibility of hosting such an exhibition in Boston through their participation in a trade delegation to Hamburg, Germany, in June, 2013. The delegates attended Hamburg’s International Building Exhibition (IBA), a city-wide showcase of green building and sustainable design techniques.

While visiting the exhibition sites, the delegation members noted the many infrastructure and urban design improvements that the exhibition had provided to the city of Hamburg. Due to hosting an International Building Exhibition, Hamburg was able to build vital new transportation infrastructure, bolster flood protections in low-lying areas of the city, and build an advanced energy grid that will help make large tracts of the city carbon neutral by 2020. The exhibition also allowed the city to vastly improve its network of schools and cultural centers in order to anchor existing residents, and helped to attract new middle-class residents with innovative, reasonably priced, environmentally friendly housing development.

“Hosting an exhibition in Massachusetts would allow for an urban design and innovation process that would address some of the longstanding regional infrastructure and transportation issues we face, and would showcase new concepts and technologies for carbon neutral growth,” said Lauren, who is a Director in Rackemann’s Real Estate Department and the Chair of its Green Energy, Resilience, and Sustainability Practice Group.

Since returning from Hamburg, members of the delegation have been invited to share their findings with the Massachusetts State Legislature and MassPort, as well as at prominent real estate focused conferences in Boston such as the BuildingEnergy14 Conference and Architecture Boston Expo.

The purpose of the group’s most recent meeting was to discuss recent developments that lend new credence and urgency to calls for holding a similar exhibition in Boston. Following the announcement last week that Boston was selected by the US Olympic Committee as the United States’ bid to host the 2024 Summer Olympic Games, the delegation members received legislative approval to prepare a white paper for the Massachusetts State Legislature regarding the viability of hosting a similar event in Boston. In preparing the white paper, the delegation will explore possible intersections between an international building exhibition, the Olympics, and Massachusetts’ Gateway Cities Initiative.

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