24 Feb 22

Avatar Hong Kong – Advancing Net Zero Ideas Competition Merit Scheme released


Following shortlisting from 36 to group of a final three global A+E firms, Woods Bagot has received the Merit Award at the Advancing Net Zero Ideas Competition organised by The Hong Kong Green Building Council with Swire Properties. The result was announced at the Award Presentation Ceremony at the ‘International Conference on Advancing Net Zero (ANZ) 2021’.  All winning schemes were exhibited publicly in Taikoo Place, Hong Kong.

Advancing Net Zero is World Green Building Council’s global project to promote and support the acceleration of net-zero carbon buildings to 100% by 2050. The open global competition aimed to generate ideas and solutions, enhance learning and knowledge sharing, and push the boundaries to design future-ready buildings and retrofit existing building stock to advance the net-zero emissions economy by 2050.

Woods Bagot teamed up with Buro Happold to enter the ANZ competition – Existing Building Category, which was focused on the renovation of Oxford House as Net Zero Carbon by the end of life. The brief detailed existing buildings’ operation, structure, and materials data. The submissions required specific environmental performance reporting and a definition of the circular economy integration strategy.

Our scheme, “AVATAR HONG KONG”, adopted a co-design approach founded on rigorous analysis of form, materials, and systems, based on the evolution of existing building systems that progressively extend the building’s life far into the future. This performative design achieves Net-Zero Energy through passive design solutions and renewable energy on-site by 2050, and Whole-Building Net-Zero Carbon by 2080, integrating this multi-modal structure into the circular economy of future Asian cities.

The design included a range of innovative yet feasible technologies, including basements converted to urban farming facilities, heavily landscaped open air ground lobby and sky-deck parklands, a progressively upgraded façade strategy, atrium climate cells, and a range of clever ventilation, energy generation, and operational performance systems.

A systemised reinforced bamboo structure for new additions included a high-rise tower extension increasing urban density while providing capacity to Hong Kong’s critical underserved housing options, thus preserving the city’s natural resources from further development.

Woods Bagot Team and representatives from Buro Happold presented and received the Merit of Award at Award Presentation Ceremony

ANZ is a scalable approach to densification and zero-carbon urban habitats that seriously addresses the adaption of the existing 80% of buildings that make up the fabric of our cities. With the COP26’s ambition to recruit 1000 Cities to the “Race to Zero’, evolving existing buildings to meet this goal is one of the most significant challenges we have.

Stephen Jones, Director and Principal-in-charge
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