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ABAA & CSI Chicago Air Barrier Symposium

March 13, 2024
10:30 am - 5:30 pm
Kasbeer Hall - 25 E Pearson St, Chicago, IL 60611
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Posted by Eric Overby

Join us for a comprehensive Symposium featuring expert presenters Melissa Payne and Ryan Dalgleish. This event is tailored for professionals in the construction and design industry, providing valuable insights into building enclosure architectural details, air barrier system specifications, pre-construction meetings, and addressing recurring field installation issues. 

Event Agenda

  • 10:30 AM: Doors open
  • 11:00 AM: Welcome
  • 11:15 AM: Building Enclosure Architectural Details – Conveying Construction Drawing Clarity
  • 12:15 PM: Lunch
  • 12:30PM: Oh No! What did I Miss? How to Properly Specify an Air Barrier System
  • 1:30PM: Break
  • 1:45 PM: Building Enclosure Pre-Construction Meeting
  • 2:45 PM: Break
  • 3:00 PM: Groundhog Day: Recurring Field Installation Issues with Air Barriers
  • 4:00 PM: Happy Hour

Building Enclosure Architectural Details – Conveying Construction Drawing Clarity 

1.0 LU/HSW  

Presenter: Melissa Payne, BECxP, CxA+BE, CDT, Building Enclosure Consulting –Forensics, Owner, Midwest Enclosure Consulting, LLC 

Designing an air-tight, water-tight, and energy efficient building requires an understanding of the anatomy of the entire building enclosure in order to build structures that will perform as intended. A lack of understanding of these concepts translates into poor and incomplete architectural details, gaps in design information, and exterior wall components that cannot be properly installed, leading to contractors “figuring it out on the field.” This presentation will touch upon basic concepts of building science and how drawings can be improved to create beautiful, sustainable structures that function properly, by conveying clarity on building enclosure details at foundation-to-wall, roof-to-wall, window-to-wall, penetrations, and at dissimilar material transition points. 

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand the importance of building enclosure architectural details and the consequences of not including necessary details as part of construction documents
  • Learn what exterior wall envelope details must be provided according to code and best practices for meeting code
  • Understand Building Science effects on the architectural design
  • Understand how materials and sequencing can play into the constructability of a design


Oh No! What did I Miss? How to Properly Specify an Air Barrier System

1.0 LU/HSW; 1.0 GBCI

Presenter: Ryan Dalgleish, COO of Air Barrier Association of America

Design and Construction documents are one of the first steps towards achieving an effective layer of airtightness to manage moisture and air movement. The importance of a proper specification cannot be understated, and a well-articulated document will ensure that the owner is provided with materials, performance, and quality. The presentation will review some of the considerations and language that should be reviewed prior to developing a specification and will outline code requirements, performance requirements, what can be done for quality and ensuring material selection meets the intent of design and for crucial coordination with other components of the enclosure. 

Learning Objectives: 

  • Through a review of code language of IECC 2015 and ASHRAE 90.1, determine the code compliance options for air barriers and requirements for materials, assemblies and whole building airtightness
  • Understand the various test methods for air barrier materials and assemblies as it relates to air, water, fire and other key requirements
  • Analyze the other control functions for a wall assembly and determine if the air barrier also provides vapor control or water resistance
  • Identify key language for 3-part specification to articulate performance standards, execution and quality requirements
  • Define requirements for quality assurance and control and typical downfalls of specification language


Building Enclosure Pre-Construction Meeting

1.0 LU/HSW

Presenter: Melissa Payne, BECxP, CxA+BE, CDT, Building Enclosure Consulting –
Forensics, Owner, Midwest Enclosure Consulting, LLC

A pre-construction meeting is a crucial part of the construction process which should be specified and outlined in several sections of the project manual as part of the quality assurance specification. It is paramount to coordinate pre-construction meetings with team members on the building project, as this establishes expectations upfront for the installation and subsequent warranties of the components of the building enclosure. By having a pre-construction meeting prior to the commencement of field operations, the owner, design team, general contractor, sub-contractors, and manufacturers are presented with the opportunity to discuss and resolve issues the various trades might encounter during the construction process. It is the intent of this presentation to explain the foundation of a building enclosure pre-construction meeting and to help foster a collaborative approach to information sharing that will minimize construction problems, delays, and manage risks.

Learning Objectives: 

  • Understand where in the specifications the pre-construction meeting should be specified and what divisions should be referenced • Understand what trades should be present and why.
  • Understand how to coordinate the building enclosure components and why it’s important to coordinate them.
  • Understand how to resolve compatibility and installation issues that may arise out of a preconstruction meeting.
  • Understand what specific details to look for and why they should be discussed at the preconstruction meeting.


Groundhog Day: Recurring Field Installation Issues with Air Barriers 

1.0 LU/HSW

Presenter: Ryan Dalgleish, COO of Air Barrier Association of America

Everyone knows that air barriers are important, they know what they do and that they need to be installed correctly. We have heard it for 20 years and no longer need a presentation to remind us of that. With that being said, how do we give them a chance of success? One of the most common risk management strategies used is a robust quality assurance program in the specifications that requires certified contractors, trained and certified installers, evaluated materials and on-site third-party audits. This presentation will discuss the role of the quality assurance audits, and point out what to look for when doing site observation and quality control. It will also provide real life examples that can help you identify installation issues on your project, what caused them, and what corrective action can be taken.

Learning Objectives:

  • Assess how site quality assurance audits, field observation and site quality control fit into an overall quality assurance and risk management strategy.
  • Determine responsibilities of all building enclosure stakeholders to coordinate and execute a plan for quality installation.
  • Identify typical issues found in the installation process and what caused these for a variety of air barrier systems by visual inspection.
  • Using jobsite photos, demonstrate the physical testing that can be done on a variety of air barrier systems.



Melissa Payne, BECxP, CxA+BE, CDT

Building Enclosure Consulting – Forensics, Owner, Midwest Enclosure Consulting, LLC

Melissa I. Payne focuses on offering building enclosure third-party services. She founded Midwest Enclosure Consulting, September 2022, to offer owners, design, and construction teams with expertise in building science, building envelope solutions, forensic investigations, as well as building performance assessments and construction onsite inspections.

Ryan Dalgleish

Chief Operating Officer, Air Barrier Association of America

Ryan has been involved in the building envelope and building performance areas of construction in both the commercial and residential sectors for over 20 years. Ryan is a trainer and facilitator, as well as having performed a number of management roles for over 2 decades. He is also actively involved in research, training development and delivery, certification management and helping industries increase their professionalism. Ryan acts in the position of Chief Operating Officer for the Air Barrier Association of America. Ryan obtained credentials in Adult Education, Leadership and Organizational Excellence from the University of Manitoba and has been mentored and trained by some of the best building scientists in the world. Ryan is a certified Net Zero building instructor, teaches master builder courses to builders across the country and is a frequent speaker at various presentations dealing with the building enclosures to various building official associations, city departments, and chapters of the Building Enclosure Councils, American Institute of Architects, Construction Specifications Institute and a number of local home builder associations.



Registration Cost (Includes Lunch + Happy Hour)

Registration closes 2 days before the event or when capacity is met.  Event space is limited to the first 100 registered attendees. Registration is refundable up to 7 days before the event. 

CSI Member = $100 
CSI Non-Member = $150