GALLERY INDEX

Benchmarking Sustainability – Greening of an architectural school in Shanghai

Related Staff : Stephen Lau

Studio Tutor: SSY Lau, LEED-AP:BD+C, China GBL Manager,
Acknowledgement: Tongji University professors: Qian Feng, Song Dexuan, Yang Feng; Ten Design: Ted Givens, Colin Ashton, Frisly C Morales, Peby Pratama, Mohamad Ghamloch, Ma Yao, He Xuan ; HKU Mechanical Engineering: Professor Yuguo Li, Dr. Hang Jian; HKU PhD candidates: Zhang Zhidong, Stephanie Chan, Sun Xiao Nuan, Gou Zhonghua.

Pedagogic inquiry:
Individual understanding of concept and the process of conceptualization,
Communication: charisma, presence, command, clarity, speech, skills,
Contents – How, and; What green is green in the specific inquiry.
Technics – Passive Vs Active, and Mixed-mode design for Shanghai climate; BIM, Ecotect, Dialux, and AirPak; Material science – Phase Change technology; William McDonough and theories.

The Master Architecture Studio entitled ‘Benchmarking Sustainability – Greening of an architectural school in Shanghai’ was host to 11 students from the Master Architecture Year 1 to engage in a 16-weeks academic endeavors. The challenge is a three-folded one, similar to the commonly deliberated ‘three pillars of sustainability – environmental, social and economics’, challenged these young architects to acquire a thorough understanding of both theoretical and technical basis to procure green design first, in the orthodox way, and second, in an unorthodox way. For the beginner, the Studio serves as a primer to contemporary green design pedagogy with a critical exploration and review of both inspirations and limitations implied by established green concerns and practices. Eleven students, three from Hong Kong, three from Mainland, and five returning Hong Kong students studied in USA, Canada and Australia, worked together as sub-groups each responsible for one of four existing buildings of the College of Architecture and Planning Tongji University. The learning process includes the principles and details of green building design and assessment tools, primarily those prescribed by the China GDL and LEED Protocols. Specifically, the architectural students were requested to learn from tutors from the HKU Department of Mechanical Engineering principles and operational skills of wind modeling protocols such as AirPak, to ascertain an essential aspect of environmental design capability. One week was arranged at Shanghai where students met and presented their interim design to Tongji stakeholders – professors and students.

The Studio received sponsorship from the Hong Kong practice TEN Design in the form of tutoring and reviews, in the form of knowledge exchange and professional engagement. At the end of the Studio, all realized that it is not important about the actual product from the individuals, or groups; more of relevance is that these students are exposed to the art and skill of implementing, and measuring green design.

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UNIVERSITY OF HONG KONG
FACULTY OF ARCHITECTURE