Friday / May 14, 2021 / 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM

Taking expansion joint design from misery to victory


Architectural drawings often include a manufactured expansion joint system, sized to accommodate the anticipated structural movement of the joint, with limited consideration to the adjacent building enclosure systems. Structural engineers view expansion joint systems as a separator between two buildings that move differentially, while building enclosure engineers consider expansion joints as a connector between roof, waterproofing, air/water/vapor control layer, and fire barrier systems. This BECC presentation will address how to detail, develop, and construct expansion joint systems to maintain enclosure air/water/vapor and thermal barrier continuity and prevent leakage. The presented approach is based on the presenters’ combined experience in managing projects that include expansion joints from design to final completion and in investigating failed expansion joint systems.  


  • Luke Niezelski joined the building technology division of Simpson Gumpertz & Heger Inc. (SGH) in 2014. He is licensed as a Professional Engineer in Massachusetts and is experienced in the investigation/assessment, design, construction administration, monitoring/inspection and field-testing of historic and contemporary building enclosure systems.  Luke has been involved in various Boston high-rise construction projects and is routinely collaborating with architects, owners, and contractors on complex building enclosure designs.
  • Sophia Salah is a consulting engineer and has been with Simpson Gumpertz & Heger Inc. (SGH) for over ten years. She is licensed as a Professional Engineer in California and Massachusetts and works frequently with architects, owners, and contractors on both new design and rehabilitation projects. Ms. Salah is experienced in both the west coast and New England regions, and specializes in investigation and design of complex enclosure systems including below-grade waterproofing, plaza waterproofing, roofing systems, opaque cladding, and curtain wall systems.

Registration: BEC Chicago members will receive an invite with registration link approximately 7 to 10 days before the event. Non-members should contact Jeff Diqui at to request an invite.

Hosted By

Building Enclosure Council-Chicago

Learning Units

1.5 LU

Member Price


Non Member Price