Review of top building industry trade events + what’s new for 2017

  • 10 Jan 2017

events-venice-290Howard Chapman, Buildingtalk Editor looks back at the top construction industry events of 2016 and looks forward to some of the best building industry trade shows planned for 2017.


We begin our review with two interesting industry events I attended in Europe during the Brexit vote year.

We then look at key construction industry trade events supported by Buildingtalk during 2016, followed by dates for some of the 2017 building industry trade events to add to your diary.

We will be launching more comprehensive details of industry events via a new feature on Buildingtalk later this month.

2016 European Events

Venice – Architectural Biennale

As part of a trip to Venice, my favourite European city, I took in a visit to the Architecture Biennale 2016 which was an inspiration for how central London could be transformed if it was largely free of cars and given back to its citizens and visitors.

events-switzerland-square-290Switzerland – Advanced Building Skins

The Advanced Building Skins conference in Bern, Switzerland explored what is transforming architectural design including how the next generation of building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) are being used to replace conventional building materials in parts of the building envelope such as the roof, skylights, or facades. It also looked at the impact of BIM and large scale 3D printing of building components.

The two stand-out talks were: Paolo Zilli from Zaha Hadid Architects speaking about the parametrical design features and construction processes of the spectacular Generali Tower in Milan. And Vincenti Montes-Amoros briefed us on ‘Death-Ray buildings’, a topic we had just reviewed on Buildingtalk with an article by Andreas Karweger on ‘How glass facades can attack the environment’.

2016 Building industry UK trade events

Bircan Tulga Photography

UK Construction Week, Bircan Tulga Photography

UK Construction Week

Featuring nine shows under one roof, UK Construction Week attracted over 30,000 trade visitors and 650 exhibitors plus more than 165 hours of seminar content from over 100 speakers. It included the Build Show, Timber Expo, Civils Expo, the Surface and Materials Show, Energy 2016, Plant & Machinery Live, HVAC 2016, Smart Buildings 2016 and Grand Designs Live.

Digital Construction Week

UK BIM Alliance was launched at Digital Construction Week in October to help drive BIM Level 2 across the wider industry as a foundation for the shift to BIM Level 3 towards 2025.

Explore Offsite in the Housing Sector

The latest in a series of building technology events, Explore Offsite in the Housing Sector, offered significant insights into solutions to the UK housing crisis and how we can build better homes at a faster pace.

The Health & Safety Event

This 3 day event focused on how we can eradicate work health risks and save lives – hence the catchy tag line ‘3 days to save a life’.


Buildingtalk editor with Phil Wilbrham, Heathrow Airport’s Development Director, at London Build 2016

London Build

The highlight of the busy London Build conference was an opportunity to meet a very upbeat Phil Wilbraham, Heathrow Airport’s Development Director on the day the Government approved a third runway at Heathrow Airport to expand UK airport capacity.

UK Security Expo

UK Security Expo 2016 was a big success and is already the top security showcase attracting a worldwide audience. It was a great opportunity to take a closer look the latest in security as it impacts the built environment.

Structural Timber Awards

The winners of the 2016 Structural Timber Awards highlight top projects, products and people in structural timber across the UK. Sarah Wigglesworth Architects won the top awards for their Mellor Primary School project.

NHIC Awards

National Home Improvement Council (NHIC) Annual Awards, first given back in 1974, honour and encourage achievement in improving the UK housing stock. Dr Peter Bonfield, Chief Executive of BRE was the guest speaker.

Schueco Excellence Awards

Held at the Leadenhall Building in London, the Schueco Excellence Awards, now in their third year, were set up to recognise outstanding architecture and the very best in the design and installation of Schueco systems

2017 Building industry trade events

Here are the dates for just some of the building industry key trade events to add to your 2017 diary.

BAU 2017

World’s leading trade fair for architecture, materials and systems

16-21 January 2017, Munich, Germany

Buildingtalk reports

Schüco showcases the future of facades, windows and doors at BAU 2017

SE Controls smoke control & environmental ventilation solutions at BAU 2017



The only event in the UK that focuses soley on interior and exterior surfaces, 170 exhibitors showcasing the latest innovative materials.

7-9 February 2017, Business Design Centre, London



Exhibition and conference for construction, design and energy in the built environment.

7 – 9 March 2017, Excel, London



Extensive free educational content over 3 days offering new ideas on making the workplace safer.

21-23 March 2017, NEC Birmingham



New London conference and exhibition showcases the use of materials during all stages of architecture, construction and design, from structure to finishing.

25-26 April 2017, ILEC Centre, Earls Court, London



For professionals tasked with protecting assets, business, people and nations from terrorism. Exhibition and conference exploring the latest threats and solutions.

3-4 May 2017, London



PHEX and PHEX+ plumbing and heating exhibitions are the leading regional trade shows for the installer, contractor and merchant sector.

17th-18th May 2017. Alexandra Palace, London



The one UK event for all those involved in the manufacture and installation of windows, doors and conservatories.

23-25 May 2017, NEC Birmingham



International conference for architects, engineers, scientists and the building industry
2-3 October 2017, Bern, Switzerland



Innovation in the built environment

18 – 19 October 2017, London



UK’s largest construction trade event features 9 nine shows under one roof and 650 exhibitors. Showcases latest products and debates building industry’s biggest issues.

10 – 12 October 2017, Birmingham NEC



Promotes excellence in structural timber across the UK

10th October 2017, National Conference Centre, Birmingham



3 shows (BATIMAT, INTERCLIMA+ELEC and IDEOBAIN) come together with more than 2,600 French and International exhibitors and over 350,000 visitors.

6-10 November, Paris Nord Villepinte Exhibition Centre, Paris



Energy Management Exhibition – for everyone responsible for reducing their organisation’s energy consumption.

22-23 November 2017, Excel, London



Global security showcase for Government, Transport, Intelligence, Defence, Law Enforcement, Emergency Services, CNI, Private Sector and Cyber Security. 

29 – 30 November 2017, Olympia London

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