High Performance Design Optimization and Decision Making

High Performance Design Optimization and Decision Making

Case studies explore optimizing high-performance design from concept design phase throughout design development phases, especially in tall buildings.


Facing the AIA 2030 challenge, architects carry more responsibilities for the environment than ever. This course explores the process of optimizing high-performance design from concepts throughout design development phases especially in tall buildings. The case studies include initial building form and orientation study, building envelope window-wall ratio analysis, building solar heat gain analysis and daylighting, external shading strategies, tree shading analysis, HVAC design responding to growing global air quality issues, natural ventilation in tall buildings, building envelope, and water reduction strategies. This course will also discuss how to make balanced decisions during the optimizing process and manage the risks on new technologies in design integration.

Learning objectives

  • Understand how the building can be designed in an integrated high-performance design process throughout different design phases.
  • Identify the process of optimizing building design elements and building energy performance, including form, facade, shading, systems, on-site energy generation, etc.
  • Discuss material, water and health.
  • Lead the design/engineer team and make informed decisions based on balanced evaluations of different architectural components.
  • Understand high performance design at district and urban scale.

This course is part of a series

User rating:
Average: 4.3 (359 votes)
 $40  non-member
 $25  member
1.50 LUs
  • HSW
  • GBCI
  • RIBA


  • Luke Leung

    Luke Leung

    PE, LEED Fellow

    Director of the MEP / Sustainable Engineering Studio; Skidmore, Owings and Merrill LLP (SOM)

    Luke Leung is the Director of the MEP / Sustainable Engineering Studio for Skidmore, Owings and...
  • Arkadiusz Mazurek

    Arkadiusz Mazurek

    PhD, PE, SE

    Structural Engineer; Skidmore Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM)

    Arkadiusz Mazurek, PhE, PE, SE has a master degree in structural engineering from University of...
  • Yue Zhu

    Yue Zhu


    Associate Director /Senior Technical Coordinator; Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM)

    As an Associate Director /Senior Technical Coordinator in the Chicago office of SOM, Yue Zhu has...