RICS Awards China: Innovation drives change
Spotlight on the sustainability achievement winner
It is noteworthy that the Jury's Award for Sustainability Achievement at the RICS Awards China went to a bamboo bridge. The Yi Xin Qiao Project, in Dujia Village near Chongqing, is a bridge to the past, of course. Using freely available local materials such as moso bamboo, processed with pesticides and preservatives for durability, it's intended as a model project for isolated villages in China's often mountainous hinterland.
But it is equally a bridge to the future. Four Chinese universities combined to build the bridge at a breakneck pace of two months. It's the longest bamboo bridge ever built in China, at 21 metres, and a breakthrough in the construction technology of this fast-growing renewable resource. Bamboo typically cracks easily, is not that durable and is hard to build with structural integrity. Those are issues that the project, backed by the State Forestry Administration of China and the China Bamboo Industry Association, has worked to resolve.
Further recognition for Sustainability Achievement of the Year went to TaiKoo Hui Guangzhou for a project that uses glass and steel to give an airy and open feel to an innovative retail mall. Also, the Shanghai Engineering Research Center of Existing Building Function Enhancement, where an R&D team did a deep dive into the science behind building renovation technology.