Build­ing a bet­ter con­struc­tion in­dus­try

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - LIFESTYLE - By XU HAOYU xuhaoyu@chi­

The China Ar­chi­tec­tural De­sign Expo staged in Bei­jing from Oct 31 to Nov 3 claims to be the first ex­po­si­tion to fo­cus on the over­all de­vel­op­ment of the con­struc­tion in­dus­try in the world’s largest con­struc­tion mar­ket.

The event, co-founded by the Ar­chi­tec­tural So­ci­ety of China, Messe Munchen GmbH and MMU BAU Fen­es­tra­tion Co, Ltd, pre­sented a se­ries of in­ter­na­tional con­fer­ences and fo­rums, de­sign in­stal­la­tions and ar­chi­tec­tural cases from aca­demic per­spec­tives.

It aims to build a state-of-the-art, one-stop com­mu­ni­ca­tions plat­form across the in­dus­try chain, com­bin­ing de­sign con­cepts and cul­tural her­itage with new tech­nolo­gies and ma­te­ri­als to en­cour­age in­spi­ra­tion and imag­i­na­tion in the in­dus­try, in­clud­ing in such ar­eas as its so­cial mis­sion, trends and prac­ti­cal so­lu­tions.

Eco­nomic In­for­ma­tion Daily named China the world’s largest con­struc­tion mar­ket in 2015, when an­nual build­ing vol­ume in­creased by 2 bil­lion square me­ters. (The fig­ures haven’t since been up­dated.)

ASC’s pres­i­dent, Xiu Long, says ur­ban­iza­tion is still ac­cel­er­at­ing, while the in­dus­try’s man­age­ment phi­los­o­phy and sys­tems are chang­ing.

The in­dus­try has en­tered a process of in­te­gra­tion that con­sid­ers en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­tec­tion, scal­able pro­duc­tion, man­u­fac­tur­ing stan­dard­iza­tion and dig­i­tal meth­ods.

Xiu says that it’s mov­ing in a healthy and sus­tain­able di­rec­tion over­all.

He at­tributes much of the progress over the past two years to the ad­vance­ment of en­gi­neer­ing con­sult­ing and the ar­chi­tect-re­spon­si­bil­ity sys­tem. Chi­nese ar­chi­tects have im­proved their pro­fes­sion­al­ism, cross­over in­no­va­tions, in­ter­na­tional vi­sions and lo­cal prac­tices, he says.

Xiu be­lieves the CADE has ar­rived at a turn­ing point in the in­dus­try — that is, amid the ex­ten­sive de­vel­op­ment of scale and speed that’s pur­su­ing op­er­a­tion-ori­ented and qual­ity ad­vance­ments.

It’s also a good time to in­au­gu­rate the event as ur­ban­iza­tion not only ex­pands cities but cities also en­gage in ur­ban re­newal — in­clud­ing the pro­tec­tion and ren­o­va­tion of old build­ings — and vil­lages are like­wise re­vived.

So, the con­struc­tion in­dus­try needs to move for­ward with com­pre­hen­sive up­grades, es­pe­cially amid a shift from quan­tity to qual­ity, and par­tic­u­larly in the realm of sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment, he says.

The first CADE was in­tended to cre­ate a com­mu­ni­ca­tion plat­form through­out the in­dus­try chain to pro­mote the in­te­gra­tion of the­ory and prac­tice.

The event hosted 656 ex­hibitors from 20 coun­tries, who pre­sented over 30,000 new con­struc­tion ma­te­ri­als and tech­nolo­gies. Over 100,000 vis­i­tors at­tended.

It fea­tured seven themes — “peo­ple”, “cases”, “mile­stones”, “clas­sics”, “records”, “awards” and “tech­ni­cal”.

“Peo­ple” pre­sented se­lected works of the first gen­er­a­tion of more than 20 grad­u­ates from the Uni­ver­sity of Penn­syl­va­nia in the 1920s and ’30s. It also show­cased pieces by 14 ar­chi­tec­tural aca­demi­cians — some couldn’t at­tend in per­son — who pre­sented the cre­ativ­ity and think­ing of their re­spec­tive eras.

“Cases” pre­sented 12 build­ings in Bei­jing and Shang­hai that de­mon- strate the 20th cen­tury’s ar­chi­tec­tural her­itage and out­stand­ing mod­ern ar­chi­tec­tural-pro­tec­tion cases. It raised ques­tions about Shen­zhen Sta­dium’s fu­ture — a topic of hot de­bate on so­cial me­dia.

“Mile­stones” showed the Chi­nese Ar­chi­tec­tural So­ci­ety’s achieve­ments from 1953 un­til 2018.

“Clas­sics” dis­played 60 manuscripts from the Lei fam­ily, who served as chief ar­chi­tects dur­ing the Qing Dy­nasty (1644-1911), de­tail­ing the ex­quis­ite crafts­man­ship of wood works dur­ing the pe­riod.

“Records” re­vealed the coun­try’s aca­demic thought and de­signs over the past 65 years as pre­sented by the Jour­nal of Ar­chi­tec­ture and the Jour­nal of Struc­ture.

“Awards” showed win­ning pieces from the 2018 Asian Con­struc­tion As­so­ci­a­tion Ar­chi­tec­ture Awards and the Chi­nese Ar­chi­tec­tural So­ci­ety’s 2017-18 Ar­chi­tec­tural De­sign Awards.

The “tech­ni­cal” sec­tion served as the venue for sa­lons and dis­plays re­lated to the lat­est tech­nol­ogy.

The CADE’s first edi­tion at­tracted such heavy­weights as Velux, Baogui Stone Art, Canada Wood and CCTN Ar­chi­tec­tural De­sign.

It hosted nearly 20 sa­lons, and six pro­fes­sional con­fer­ences and fo­rums.

ASC’s sec­re­tary-gen­eral, Zhong Jishou, says: “We’ll be able to gen­er­ate new and ex­cit­ing mo­men­tum with the ex­hi­bi­tion and fu­ture col­lab­o­ra­tion. Our shared goal is to ad­vance China’s con­struc­tion in­dus­try and pre­pare it to face the fu­ture from a strong po­si­tion.”

The China Ar­chi­tec­tural De­sign Expo

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