DisruptCRE NYC: Brian Klansky Discusses The State of Smart Buildings

On March 29th, 2018, Brian Klansky, The Northeast Regional Director of View Dynamic Glass gave a featured presentation at our 4th Annual DisruptCRE – New York City event on the Future of Smart Buildings.

He opened with a striking point about smart buildings. “Smart buildings have forgotten a really, really important person,” he said. “And that’s the occupant.”

He went on to say that smart building needed to do better and be better while still remembering the occupant. He credited the current system for doing a few things really well, including:

  • Efficient HVAC units
  • Building management systems
  • LEDs/lighting controls
  • Modular construction
  • Solar/Renewable

Smart buildings would attend, Klansky illustrated through an example of the vendor room, to details such as making sure blinds don’t remain down and prevent amazing views after a too-sunny day has passed due to human carelessness.

The core of his message was to keep the focus on occupants through such details, but also in terms of larger processes such as keying into buildings, setting up remote conferences seamlessly, and getting temperature right.

“Who has checked into a building, they give you the third degree, they can’t find you in the system, they try calling around, the person who you’re there to see is roaming around somewhere, but you can’t get ahold of them, and now you’re late for your huge meeting where you’re trying to close a deal?” he asked.

His proposed solution was office design that focused on humans, such as Google’s revolutionary office. Why is this going to be so crucial? He pointed out a stat that indicates we will spend 90% of our time indoors in the future.

‘There are actual health benefits to doing it the right way,” he said, pointing out a study from Cornell that found that natural light reduces eyestrain by 51%, results in 63% fewer headaches, increases productivity, and reduces drowsiness.

Cutting-edge companies such as Netflix are taking full advantage of natural light through the use of smart glass designed to adjust its own opacity levels based on the brightness outdoors.

“There are two identical buildings that Netflix use for their offices, one with blinds and one with dynamic glass. People at Netflix fight to get into that dynamic glass building because they want the occupancy experience they have in there,” he said.

To hit home his point about how entwined with our lives buildings will become to our future, Kransky turned to a quote from Winston Churchhill. “We shape our buildings, thereafter, they shape us.