This year the IAPEX Building Material Exhibition & Conference organized by IAP – Karachi Chapter received a triumph with maximum number of stalls booked in three huge halls of the expo center Karachi where over 100 manufacturers/ suppliers from Building material industry displayed their products in more than 300 stalls.

The theme of IAPEX 2018 international Conference was ‘Communal Spaces – Transformations and Lessons’. The conference added a rich discourse around various aspects of what constitutes communal spaces and improved the generic understanding towards these aspects. Through this conference, the discourse around the communal architecture and its lateral approaches generated an academic interest and provided pragmatic design solutions for the practitioners. The conference, through its multiple sessions and panel discussions intended to describe the work of some notable contributions from the community of architects on national and international level.

The conference was inaugurated by Prof. Dr. Atta-ur-Rehman, the eminent educationist and former Chairman Higher Education Commission. This year the resulting response in form of the call of papers for the conference was very well received and architects from both local and international background participated enthusiastically. The 10 technical presentations which consist of 6 national and 4 international speakers, dealt with various aspects for instance the adaptive re-use of urban and cultural spaces, social impact of public spaces, innovative solutions for shared/co-working office spaces, significance of the historic public squares and the piazzas, urban regeneration or the universal accessibility in public and communal spaces and so on.

The selection of presentations/ research papers made the conference to receive an overwhelming participation by architects, IAP members, practitioners and public in general. IAPEX 2018 invited architects serving in various disciplines around the world and had presentations on the vast subjects from vernacular communal architecture in Bangladesh to the tropical architecture in Sri Lanka and also highlighted epitome of serious urbanization concerns, like traffic, pollution, declining business and loss of historical heritage in Philippines.

Ar. Sarosh Pradhan, Ar. Thisara Thanapathy, Ar. Irene G. Florendo and Ar. Ishtiaque Zahir Titas from Nepal, Srilanka, Philippines and Bangladesh participated as international participants. Local participants included 2 young emerging architects Ar. Hira Ovais (Co-authored with Dr. Anila Naeem), Ar. Shazia Qureshi and 4 senior architects/ practitioners as Ar. Sajjad Kausar, Ar. Arshad Faruqui, Dr. Ali Akbar and Mr. Farhan Mehboob. Three days long conference which included enormous speakers from both national and international background shared their vision, was added with several other side activities. The conference was summed up by Ar. Saifullah Sami.

Students Charratte was participated by the nominated students from 7 accredited schools of architecture from Sindh and 1 from Baluchistan under surveillance of the faculty members from each school. This not only provided students with the chance to get acquainted and work with each other but also endowed with the opportunity of interacting with senior architects and practitioners both from local and international background. The participating schools also presented stage plays and performances in the event of Student’s Night which was followed by a musical concert. This activity highlighted the extracurricular abilities of the students and presented the softer image of their schools.

Alongside the conference and exhibition another feature of the IAPEX 2018 was the Architects Portfolio, an exhibition featuring architects professional works. The Exhibition of 2nd BAE-IAP Architectural Photography Competition also drew the visitors’ attention.

The event culminated with the Gala Night as the closing ceremony. The closing remarks were furnished by the IAP-KC president. He praised and thanked each individual for the support in making the event successful.