Government and Enterprise Representatives from Xiongan visit the Sino-Canada Ecological Demonstration Area in Tianjin

By: Yike Qin

On March 26, 2021, Canada Wood China (CW China) and Forestry Innovation Investment China (FII China) organized a tour to the Tianjin Sino-Canada Ecological Demonstration Area with the support from Tianjin Planning and Construction Bureau. Over 30 attendees from the Xiongan New Area participated in this event, representing government bodies, state-owned enterprises (SOEs), design institutes, NGOs and other related organizations.

The Tianjin Binhai New Area is known as the first free trade pilot zone in North China; a national level pilot zone for policy reforms, and a national level innovation demonstration zone. In May 2006, the State Council published the ‘Opinions on Issues Related to Promoting the Development and Opening up of the Tianjin Binhai New Area’ which approved the Binhai New Area as a pilot zone and outlined the development objectives for the area to build on its function as an international shipping and logistics center to expand on advanced manufacturing, research and development. The Binhai New Area services the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei metropolitan region, and the Bohai Economic Rim which also includes the Liaodong Peninsula to the north and the Shandong Peninsula to the south.

The overall plan of Hebei Xiongan New Area is to construct a national model for promoting high-quality development that embraces green, ecological and livable urban areas, making it an important demonstration zone for innovative approaches to urban planning that can achieve higher standards of environmental protection. ‘The Planning Outline of Hebei Xiongan New Area’ and the ‘2018-2035 Master Plan of Hebei Xiongan New Area’ contain policies such as promoting green building technologies and promoting prefabricated construction, which presents favorable opportunities for the implementation of prefabricated wood-structure buildings.

As the first pilot project under the cooperation between Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of China (MOHURD) and Natural Resources Canada, the Sino-Canada Ecological Demonstration Area emphasized concepts such as low-carbon, ecology, energy saving and environmental protection throughout project planning and construction. The project has served as a high-level project for Sino-Canadian exchanges, as a large scale demonstration project that hosts many site visits and training programs to educate officials, developers and contractors on advanced applications of wood in construction.

This site visit brought together representatives of the Binhai New Area and the Xiongan New Area to review the planning and construction process for modern wooden structures. Through this, FII China had the opportunity to facilitate a workshop with local stakeholders from these regions to explore opportunities with green building, carbon neutrality, modern building industrialization and intelligent construction.

Opening Session

Yike Qin, Senior Manager of FII China opened the session with an introduction of the work of CW China and FII China, with the program moderated by Tianqi Song, Manager of FII China. The Housing and Construction Committee of Binhai New Area attended the meeting with representatives from the construction bureaus of the five state-level development zones under the administration of Binhai New Area, with representatives to introduce the details of green and energy-saving buildings of the Binhai New Area. Zhuan Yu, General Manager of BSD-TEDA Investment and Development Co., Ltd., gave a presentation on the development and operations of the Sino-Canada Ecological Demonstration Zone.

The Housing and Construction Committee of Binhai New Area delegates Zhao Zhang

Project Tour Session

Delegates from Xiongan visited the Low-Carbon Experience Center of Tianjin Eco-city Science Park to learn about the application of technologies in the field of low-carbon and energy-saving buildings in the Binhai New Area. These achievements in the Binhai New Area serve as a model for the low-carbon and green construction techniques that could be utilized in the Xiongan New Area.

In the Experience Center of Sino-Canada Demonstration Area, the participants had an opportunity to learn more about the eco-city and the Sino-Canada Demonstration Area. The kick-off area of the project was approximately 2 km2, with over 300 wood structure villas planned, and a total building size of over 50,000 m2. Once completed, it will be the largest wood structure residential complex in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region. In the future, this area will be developed into a diversified region with commercial blocks and industrial clusters combined with the residential communities.


Sino-Canada Demonstration Area

Delegates also visited the Exhibition Center of Wood Structure, with Jason Li, Manager of CW China explaining the basic structure and other light wood structure models.

Delegates also visited the Banff Town, which is a demonstration project for light wood villas in North America. It adopts modern prefabricated light wood construction technology and Super E ® technology promoted by Natural Resources Canada. It possesses numerous benefits such as reducing carbon emissions, improving energy efficiency, increasing comfort, enhancing durability, improving indoor air quality and environmental protection. The Super E ® technology sets higher energy saving goals for residential projects based on international standards and a low-carbon construction method.

The final stop of the tour was the CMARS office building in Bay Science Avenue, which demonstrates the application of modern wood structure in multi-story commercial office buildings.

CMars office building, Bay Science Avenue

The visit offered a substantial opportunity to deepen the exchanges and communications between the Tianjin Binhai New Area and the Xiongan New Area on the application of modern wood structure buildings. The team at FII China and CW China were able to engage officials and stakeholders from these areas to promote opportunities for cooperation in the areas of green building, carbon neutrality, modern building industrialization, and intelligent construction, where there are applications for the benefits of modern wood construction.