Review | Urban Regenerative and Sustainable Design International Symposium
time: 2019-03-19


The global trends of urbanization are facing the crucial challenges on reducing their demands on nature and moving towardssustainability.Furthermore, regenerating and evolving with the ecosystem synergistically is also an important issue. This symposium attempts to contribute on urban design and development through presenting the cutting-edge achievements and experience of overseas scholars and designers, integrating knowledge from interdisciplinary fields, exploring future-oriented development patterns, and constructing a sharing platform for professions and resources.

On March 13,2019,Urban Regenerative and Sustainable Design International Symposium was hostby School of Architecture, South China University of Technology (SCUT). Additionally, two lectures given by Prof. Werner Lang and Prof. Ferdinand Ludwig were arranged in the evening of March 12 & 14, 2019.

The international symposium and lecture series invited keynote speakers fromTechnical University of Munich (TUM), University of Hong Kong (HKU), Technological and Higher Education Institute of Hong Kong (THEI),China Architecture Design&Research Group, Association for the Promotion of Landscape and Greening in Macao, and Guangdong Ecological Landscape and Tree Assessment Research Center (Guangzhou Landscaping Company).

Keywords of this symposium include Urban and Architecture Design,Urban Regenerative,Urban Environment,Sustainability, and Green Infrastructure.

Keynote Speecheson Symposium

At the beginning of the symposium, Prof. Yiqiang XIAO warmlywelcomed all the guests and introduced the purpose of the symposium.As a result of the global population increase in recent years, the shortage of environmental resources and the problem of climate change have become much more serious, the orientation of urban designand related disciplines should be changed accordingly.

Prof.Werner Lang gave a lectureentitledTowards the healthy city—the role of gray and green. He pointed out thaturban areas are contributing substantially to the worldwide consumption of fossil fuels and the resulting emission of CO2 and other greenhouse gases, leading to climate change and the depletion of non-renewable resources. With a vision that health and well-being of people is connected to the health of our environment, the objective of the presentation is to discuss the role of urban green infrastructure as a tool for advancing urban sustainability and resilience. Furthermore, the presentation also demonstrated, how an integrated approach of ‘gray’ and ‘green’ design will allow for the employment of ecosystems services in the built environment in order to mitigate as well as to adapt to climate change.

Taking the urban design of Pazhou in Guangzhou and Xiangmi Lake in Shenzhen as examples,Prof.Yimin SUN gave a speech on practices of urban design.He discussed the problems on international urban design competitions and pointed out the importance of sustainable and ecological value in urban design. He also shared the experience of being a chief urban planning designer in Guangzhou and Shenzhen. According to the duties, he tried to preserve the natural landscape and typology of the planning site, balanced the public interest and land value, and encouraged a greenery system on urban scale as well as on open spaces of building designs.

Asst.Prof. Allen ZHANG gave a speech entitledUrban Landscape: Landscape Tree Diversity in Public Housing Estates in Hong Kong. The study areas cover public housing estates which accommodate 46.2% of the 7-million population. The species composition and diversity of landscape trees in 102 estates were assessed. The results showed significant difference in species composition between older and newer estates, and landscape-tree distribution patterns were strongly associated with estate area, open space area, estate population, estate age, Shannon index (H’) at planting strip and tree pit, and tree site quality index. The methods and findings could be used by policy makers and planners to design, maintain and enhance urban biodiversity with reference to the compact-city milieu with the help of objective research data.

Assoc.Prof.Chao REN gave a speech entitledPlannig Health Cities in Asia: Urban Climates Map and Its Applications.She sharedpractical experience by introducing several urban climatic map projects she involved and led in Asian high-density cities including Hong Kong, Macau, and Kaohsiung (Taiwan). The presentation not only look at the ways of urban climatic application methodologies and strategiesbut also introduce the practical experience of application-based guideline development. The presentation illustrate the idea of “Science in Time, Science in Place” and explain how to deliver a cross-disciplinary collaboration bridging the scientific world and the community of practice.

Prof.Ferdinand Ludwig gave a speech entitledLearning from Khasi People: New Direction of Urban Green Facilities and Architecture.Living Root Bridges, which was were developed by the Khasi and Jaintia people in the North-East India, are the functional structures grown from the aerial roots of the Indian Rubber (i.e., ficuselastica). This Such an accordance between the aims of construction and natural growth phenomena provides an important insight into the successful design with living materials. With climate change and the global phenomenon of urbanization, the challenges that affect our cities are growing problems relating to urban environment had increased. Urban spaces must provide a well-balanced microclimate with satisfactory good thermal comfort to safeguard support the health and well-being of citizens. The techniques developed by the Khasi people offer new, so far completely unexplored, possibilities for the new forms of urban green infrastructures.

Prof.Yiqiang XIAO gave a speech entitledThe Traditional Climate Space System and Contemporary Urban Design. He discussed the climate adaption of the historical urban neighborhood in Guangzhou. Transforming to urban design, a significate project is the Long-Plan House, designed by the Team SCUT-POLITO in the solar architecture competition 2018. The Long-PlanHouse is a low-rise, high-density, and low-energy house whichdevelopedunder the density urban context. The project reveals the potential of developing a kind of urban lives with integrated technologies and fixing to the urban morphology which adapting the local climate.

Mr. Cundong LI gave a speech entitledFollows Nature - Landscape Planning&Design of Nanning Garden Expo Garden. He introduced the design strategies of the park, including ecological restoration, typology landscaping, and respecting the local culture.He alsoshared the philosophy oftransforming the Human-oriented to the Nature-oriented design.

Mr. Leong Fong gave a speech entitledMacao Metal Tree,he shared the experience of designing the metal trees in Macao, which guiding the vines with metal structure in the extreme urban environment without enough daylighting, land use, soil, and water irrigation.

Mr.Haixiang JIN gave a speech entitledDiscussion on Emergency Management System of Garden Trees Under Typhoon Disaster. He sharedthe experience of emergency management system of urban trees in response to typhoon disasters.

Ms. Songyi HUANG gave a speech entitledInfluence of Typhoon “Mangkhut” on Riverside Landscape Trees in Guangzhou and Analysis of Factors of Trees Damage —Examples from Linjiang Avenue and the Belt Park. She introduced the work of tree safety assessment and scientific analysis methods, which provided guidance for improving the wind resistance of urban trees.

Responding to the problems of fast urbanization and ecological damages, the Urban Regenerative and Sustainable Design International Symposium will continue to strengthen the exchange of experience and discussion on practices as well as research in the urban context.