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Buro Happold Names Partner to Lead HST Practice

Buro Happold Names Partner to Lead HST Practice

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Buro Happold, the global leader in planning and implementation at every scale for leaders in science, technology and healthcare, has announced partner John Swift as Global Sector Lead for Healthcare, Science and Technology. The closely watched move reflects Buro Happold’s deep portfolio of award-winning works in these sectors and formalizes the firm’s multidisciplinary office integrating engineering and consulting capabilities under Swift’s leadership.

“Buro Happold is a values-driven organization,” says Swift. “We value human wellbeing, and we care about the legacy of our work. We strive to be an influencer in the shaping of the world. There is no better way to do this than to contribute innovative solutions to the development of programs, building environments and communities that support the scientists, healthcare specialists and technology engineers who will solve the greatest problems of our times.”

The firm’s now-formalized worldwide Healthcare, Science and Technology (HST) practice is positioned to optimally support the goals of clients and collaborative partners at the vanguard of three interrelated markets experiencing momentous and continued growth through recent disruptive change. Operating in 31 locations worldwide with 1,900-plus professionals led by more than 70 expert partners, global consultancy Buro Happold carries a reputation for innovative, value-focused solutions among institutional and commercial leaders.

“The engineering of healthcare, science and technology buildings demands excellence, and carries the highest expectations for performance and positive outcomes,” adds Swift, who has helped author key standards for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the General Services Administration, and a leading engineering authority, ASHRAE. “Buro Happold’s HST practice team represents an evolution of our global commitment to researching, designing and delivering healthy, safe, productive, sustainable, resilient and flexible facilities for the world’s leading organizations.”

Expanding Buro Happold’s capacities to meet the demand for creative solutions in the fast-growing and competitive HST arenas, the formalized HST practice led by Swift leverages a global portfolio and collective expertise to benefit clients worldwide. Recent major U.S. projects have included laboratories, hospitals, technology complexes and research campuses for blue-chip, Fortune 50 organizations and top institutions including Draper Laboratory, Genzyme, Takeda, Mass General Brigham, the Cleveland Clinic, Arizona State University, Brown University, and Harvard University. The HST practice also engages in its own cutting-edge research and leadership in cooperation with industry alliances and major government agencies, including its new “Hospital of the Future” concept and a published study on waste logistics and materials management through healthcare enterprises.

Working with a growing team in Boston and integrated practice leaders nationwide — as well as regional sector leaders in Europe and Asia — Swift brings to bear his experience as HST practice leader for the United States with over 25 years of experience in the creation of cutting-edge, sustainably designed research, commercial, and academic facilities. A noted expert in balancing client needs for effective and reliable infrastructure with the optimization of occupant health, safety and comfort while minimizing energy and water consumption, Swift is regarded as a leader in sustainable design and efficient building operations. Lecturing and published widely, recent talks included an I2SL presentation on “Decarbonization of Laboratory Buildings in Cold Climates.” His work on mechanical engineering standards with the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), forms the benchmarks used by other engineers around the world. Under Swift’s watch, Buro Happold has been named Engineer of the Year for 2021 by a major Boston industry publication. 

Leadership in sustainability and climate action inform all projects that BH works on, Swift adds. “Buro Happold has made significant carbon reduction commitments and a sector-leading climate pledge, so we ‘walk the walk’ where sustainable design is concerned,” he says. “Meeting environmental targets and high-performance benchmarks is more important than ever, and our HST clients count on our transdisciplinary approach to reduce operating costs as well as carbon footprints. For the large-scale tech, science and health districts being built in urban centers, the challenges are daunting and demand highly integrated processes and teams.”

Says Buro Happold CEO James Bruce, “Our acclaimed HST practice team is dedicated to creating optimal environments for researchers, caregivers, staff, and patients, and delivering better outcomes for our clients and everyone their facilities touch, the world over.”

About Buro Happold

Buro Happold is an international, integrated consultancy of engineers, consultants and advisers recognized globally as a leader in sustainability. Operating in 26 locations worldwide with 72 partners and over 1,900 employees, for over 40 years we have built a world-class reputation for delivering creative, value led solutions for an ever-challenging world.


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