Sweet Home Chicago: Why Chicago is a Hub for the Built World


Chicago is a well-known hub within the construction industry due to its historical significance, diverse economy and construction market, centralized location, skilled labor force, and favorable business climate. BuiltWorlds is proud to be a Chicago-based company and we feel privileged to be located in the city that many note as the birthplace of modern architecture. We are excited to show off our city, with three of our annual conferences being held in Chicago.

At the heart of the buildings conference we are seeking ways to enhance the value of our buildings through factors such as sustainability, time efficiency, cost efficiency, user experience, and more. We know that it is imperative to utilize emerging technologies and innovation with a holistic approach throughout the entire building lifecycle–from planning, material and system selection, operation and maintenance, and even the disposal of materials. This annual event serves as a premier platform where top professionals in the field converge to discuss how to accomplish their shared goals within the industry with innovative solutions.

The 2023 Buildings Conference is quickly approaching, with events starting on May 16. Prior to the official commencement of the conference, we will be conducting a series of meetings and a Demo Day Competition at our headquarters situated in the vibrant River North neighborhood of Chicago.

The core of this conference will be panels led by true pioneers within the built world. There will be panels surrounding sustainability, innovative hardware solutions, energy efficiency, and the future of buildings as a whole.

After the final panel of the conference, attendees will have the opportunity to join a guided tour of 800 W Fulton Market. This impressive 19-story mixed-use building is located in the historic Fulton Market district. Register for this tour to personally witness the innovative and functional design principles used within this building.

Featured Chicago-Area Speakers

As the Senior Vice President of Development at Related Midwest, Michael Ellch is responsible for managing site acquisition and overseeing the development of the firm's multibillion-dollar pipeline of real estate projects. With a history of success at the company since his initial tenure in 2011, Elch has played a key role in high-profile projects throughout Chicago, such as The 78, 500 Lake Shore Drive, and Landmark West Loop.

With more than 20 years of experience in the construction industry, Michelle holds the position of VP of Performance Excellence and ESG at Graycor. Within Graycor, she develops and implements Performance Excellence strategies, oversees the ESG plan, and leads Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion efforts.

Within his capacity as the Vice President of Sustainability at Clayco, Ryan remains at the helm of the company’s ESG initiatives. His role encompasses developing and executing a comprehensive strategy to minimize Clayco’s carbon emissions, identifying sustainable business opportunities for leadership, and overseeing sustainability initiatives and practices throughout the company as a whole.

Rendering of 800 W Fulton Market
Rendering of 800 W Fulton Market

The swift evolution of technology within the construction industry has changed the way we view the built world. The Construction Tech Conference takes a holistic approach to examine technology's impact within the entire construction process–from pre-construction, to construction functions both in the office and field. With so much to cover within the conference, it promises to be an exciting event, bringing together leading technology adopters, mature solution providers, and upcoming technology to refine the way we build.

Some notable conference pre-events to look out for include the Building Tech Forum, Demo Day Competition, and the Venture Forum Meeting.

The two-day conference will be hosted at 333 N Green Street and will be led by trailblazers within the industry at different panels and chats surrounding topics such as pre-construction and project management, BIM, technology in the built world, and smart jobsites.

Featured Chicago-Area Speaker

As the Co-Founder and CEO of ViaTechnik, Danielle is a driving force behind the company’s digital transformation within the built world through the implementation of innovative technologies such as VDC, BIM, virtual reality, and more. BuiltWorlds featured her on the 2020 Maverick List for her contributions to the AEC industry.

333 N Green Street Standing Tall at ~280 feet
333 N Green Street Standing Tall at ~280 feet

The Americas Summit is not your typical tech conference; with three-days exclusively designed for top-level, C-Suite executives in the construction tech industry. We provide a platform to share thought leadership and learn from highly experienced peers about emerging trends and the direction of the industry at large. Attendees collectively represent the epitome of the built environment’s innovation ecosystem, making it the perfect space to connect with industry pioneers who have taken unconventional paths and made a significant impact.

Ahead of the summit, BuiltWorlds will be hosting forums focused on technology adoption, venture capital, emerging solutions, and empowering women and diversity within the construction industry that is open to current and potential members.

The summit will be primarily located at the Willis Tower, with sessions facilitated by experts within the industry. There will also be unique roundtable discussions surrounding the focuses of C-Suite, heavy civil/infrastructure, specialty contracting, and building technologies.

Following the conclusion of the summit will be a reception and dinner celebrating the 2022 Mavericks Nominees.  The Mavericks Awards honor 50 individuals who have acted as trendsetters, innovative thinkers, and catalysts for change in their respective Built World fields. *Please Note: RSVP is required. There is an additional charge of $200 to attend the Mavericks Dinner.

Featured Chicago-Area Speakers

Gordon, a founding-partner of Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture, has earned global recognition for his groundbreaking work in designing diverse structures ranging from the world’s tallest buildings to sustainable communities. His guiding belief is that there is a deliberate interplay between the built and natural environment, with the goal of elevating each other in a symbiotic relationship.

Shelley holds the esteemed position of Director for both the Master of Science in Project Management Program and Executive Management for Design and Construction Program at Northwestern University. These pioneering programs are at the forefront of the construction industry–pushing the boundaries with a focus on emerging technologies and a globalized perspective in the rapidly evolving digital landscape.

The Willis Tower, hailing 1,451 feet, dominates the Chicago Skyline
The Willis Tower, hailing 1,451 feet, dominates the Chicago Skyline