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Tue December 01 2020

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China trade mission brings UK construction openings

5 Dec 13 Construction has been playing a key role in David Cameron’s trade mission to China, with Benoy showcasing its work, a new agreement for Atkins and the award of the country’s first BREEAM outstanding design certificate.

Atkins has formed a strategic partnership with Avic Joy Air Holdings to take forward plans for a major new development in Fuzhou on China’s east coast. The strategic framework cooperation agreement was signed at the UK-China business summit. In its role with Avic, Atkins is setting out a vision for a new town in Fuzhoum, a large-scale industrial park for aviation-related activity, and a 10km tunnel as well as expressway that will connect to Fuzhou city. Initial investment in the area is expected to be around RMB15bn RMB (£1.5bn), with subsequent investment taking the total value to an expected RMB50bn (£5bn).

Benoy chairman Graham Cartledge is also part of the China trade delegation with the British prime minister. He has showcased Benoy’s work across China and discussed a number of new Benoy projects opening in Shanghai, Beijing and Chengdu. Yesterday, he accompanied Cameron to WE City in Chengdu, a mixed-use scheme. Benoy has been appointed Architect for the retail element of WE City as well as facade designer and interior designer for a number of the other components. In advance of the trip, Benoy developed a white paper examining the challenges of doing business in China as an SME. It is based on Benoy’s years of experience in this marketplace, working on flagship schemes including the Shanghai ifc mall, East Hotel and INDIGO in Beijing and Parc 66 in Jinang.

Cartledge said: “One of the key messages Benoy channels is that being a global business doesn’t mean you have to be a giant conglomerate. Benoy is in effect an SME – but we work on a truly global scale. There is an opportunity for British businesses to review their model and their skills and see how that can quite quickly and easily be applied in overseas markets without drastically changing the scale of their operation.

“Promoting British business abroad has been an important part of my work over the past few years and China has been key to this dialogue. The opportunities in China are well documented and the pace at which China is growing has led to a thirst for innovation and design progress. For example, the Chinese are focused on convenience and reducing travel. This means their town planning often uses infrastructure hubs as the platform on which they build other elements.”

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Chinese state developer Franshion was awarded China’s first BREEAM outstanding design certificate for its Living Lattice exhibition centre at an event in Meixi Lake Eco City, Changsha. The event was attended by Chinese and British partners who’ve collaborated to deliver one of the best green buildings in the world.

Designed by Feilden Clegg Bradley, the £20m flagship building features a multi-level matrix or latticework of floor plates, courtyards and gardens. The structure enables the whole building to benefit from passive day lighting and ventilation strategies. The materials to be used in its construction have been selected using the BRE life cycle analysis tool, Impact.

BRE CEO Dr Peter Bonfield who is taking part in the government’s trade mission this week said: “Not only is the Living Lattice the first BREEAM Outstanding for China, it is the first certification in the world using BREEAM International New Construction 2013 and it is the first time that LCA of building materials has contributed to BREEAM certification in the country. This project will act as an exemplar for thousands of future buildings.”

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