14: Better, Faster, Cheaper: Craig Curtis and The Katerra Revolution
Katerra is a new global leader in innovation and efficiency in construction project delivery. Design Director Craig Curtis, FAIA, shares eye-opening insights as a member of the Executive Team. Katerra is challenging conventions to deliver successful, sustainable, and innovative projects on par with Ikea, Apple and Tesla in supply chain and smart sourcing, construction and beautiful design. Through its commitment to Research and Development and environmental responsibility, Katerra aims to completely disrupt the design and construction industry, and has just received $865 million in new funding!
2:02 What is the fundamental problem in the industry that you are trying to address?
2:20 “The way that we build has really not changed...for over 100 years”: a cost-plus industry not yet disrupted like Uber and Airbnb
3:53 What is the core disruption of Katerra?
5:06 Tesla model: assembly, online purchase, customization
5:56 Rebuilding after Northern California fires as potential: pick the house model, customize, follow webcam of assembly, know when truck delivered
7:48 Katerra catalogue of material sourcing, sustainability, component manufacturing and the Foxconn-Apple model
10:00 Tooling and investment in manufacturing: Dangoo lighting and kitchen components, etc
11:48 Better: Design
12:11 Scale: luxury of the Wolff Company support
14:15 Ikea vs Katerra?
19:28 Cross-laminated timber (CLT) and 5-axis milling machines = extreme precision for field assembly: “The guys that run our company, the vast majority of them are coming from the high-tech world. And they understand the accuracy required to put together a laptop, an iPhone, a printer. It’s on another level completely. They think this is child’s play.”
22:00 Efficiency: RFID tags, wall panels out of factory in Phoenix, and on-site iPads with BIM model
22:44 Robots and 3D printing components and wood fibers in the future of construction
25:33 The benefits of CLT and longer history of use outside of the US
28:31 “Thank god for venture capital”: research into acoustic, seismic, CLT research, Katerra Total Energy System (KTES) appliance power-wall, and sustainability
33:27 Story of Katerra’s origin: founder Michael Marks and Fritz Wolff
36:12 Craig’s story: from Miller Hull to Katerra
40:10 “It’s about empowering the architect”: transparency of cost, logistics, materials, labor
41:40 Design and mass customization: Refabricating Architecture: How Manufacturing Technologies are Poised to Transform Building Construction by KieranTimberlake
44:36 Relationship with partner architects; Runberg Architecture Group, Michael Green, etc
48:02 Restrictions of efficient CLT panels: factory limits, truck beds, and resulting spatial dimensions as design parameters