Merchandise Mart on Chicago river at dusk

NeoCon 2022

June 13 - 15, 2022

Merchandise Mart (and virtual)
222 W Merchandise Mart Plaza
Chicago, IL
United States

This year’s hybrid NeoCon event will feature several presentations from our design and sustainability experts. Join us in-person or virtually on-demand for these CEU-accredited sessions. Here’s the rundown of our speaker lineup:


Special Programming Workshop

ESG Onsite Workshop: How to Design for Climate, Health & Equity in Every Project

Tuesday, June 14 at 9 a.m. CDT

Net-zero carbon emissions, circularity, ESG (Environment, Social, Governance), regenerative design — client expectations are changing. Is your team prepared? We invite design practice and firm leaders to join MindClick and HDR for a hands-on workshop. Learn how to support clients’ ESG goals through design, gain access to design decision tools your entire team can use, and promote your firms’ expertise to win business. Please note this workshop will not be live-streamed.

Workshop Facilitators: HDR's Susan Suhar, IIDA, LEED AP, WELL AP, Fitwel Amb, Interior Design Principal and JoAnna Abrams, Founder and CEO MindClick



Facilities Track

Expanding Commissioning Framework: Supporting Healthy, Enduring, Sustainable Interior Environments

Tuesday, June 14 at 1 p.m. CDT

Commissioning Agents typically oversee the review of the Owner’s Project Requirements, Basis of Design, and design and construction documents. This normally entails activities associated with mechanical/engineering/plumbing and energy systems. our presenters propose that the commissioning team’s scope also include oversight of requirements as they pertain to finishes, furniture selections, acoustics, value engineering, and maintenance training. The CxA will also participate in the documentation and verification to ensure the owner's requirements are being met. An expanded commissioning process focused on Interiors supports Design Intent, Safety, Sustainability initiatives, and Environment, Social, Governance plans. It provides the strategy to preserve the investment the owner has committed to for the building interior.

Presented by HDR's Jean Hansen, FIIDA, LEED Fellow, AAHID, EDAC, CID, Sustainable Principal; Susan Suhar, IIDA, LEED AP, WELL AP, Fitwel Amb, Interior Design Principal; Charlene D. Mendez, LEED AP BD+C, Senior Sustainable Professional


Communicating Without Language: Intuitive Wayfinding for Inclusive Space

Thursday, June 16  at 1 p.m. CDT

As we all strive to create spaces that are inclusive and welcoming to all, one element is often overlooked or misunderstood: the signage and wayfinding systems critical to a functional space. How can designers address the concept of wayfinding if we speak different languages, or have neurodiversity, or any number of different approaches to navigating the world? In this session, our presenters will dive into the new models of signage and wayfinding that move beyond barriers to make spaces intuitive and welcoming to all.

Presented by HDR's Elizabeth Von Lehe, Design Director and Jeff Zoll, Wayfinding Principal



Healthcare Track

The Pavilion at Penn Medicine: How a Human-Centered Process Leads to Human-Centered Design

Thursday, June 16 at 10 a.m. CDT

Completed in October of 2021, the Pavilion at Penn Medicine has already made an indelible mark on the lives of the patients, families and staff. Delivered with an integrated project team approach, this $1.6 billion, 1.5-million square-foot facility took over 6 years to design and construct and put the user at the center of the process. From 50,000-square-foot mock-ups, to simulations, to having full-time clinicians embedded in the design team, this project closely examined the human experience at each step of the journey and it shows. In this presentation, learn how an empathetic design process yields tangible improvements to the healthcare experience.

Presented by HDR's Sara Gally, NCIDQ, EDAC, Interior Design Principal and Derek Tasch, Health System Architect, University of Pennsylvania Health System