There’s a great piece in the new Wired about Dongtan — the ambitious project to create a zero carbon city for half a million people near Shanghai. It’s something I’ve heard about tangentially and in shorter news articles but this is the first feature I’ve seen that tells a fuller story.
Madrid’s Barajas airport won the RIBA Stirling Prize for architecture yesterday.
I accidently visited it on my way to Valencia in the summer because I had to plan my trip to be in front of a telly for the World Cup final and the best way to do it was to change at Madrid. I didn’t even know there was a new airport so it was a lovey surprise to step off a plane and into the future. I spent an hour or so just wandering around in awe with a smile on my face. It’s stunning.
I’ve noticed quite a few stories about increasing interest in environmental performance by the Chinese Government recently. This one says the Government is to spend $175 billion (yep, that says billion) on an environmental cleanup. This one says that Bill Dunster (who designed my house) might get a big gig in China and New Scientist also ran a piece (sub reqd) about all the interest in Dongtan — a suburb of Shanghai which is going to be built to very high environmental standards.
With almost a quarter of the world’s population we all need to hope the Chinese do something revolutionary about the environment, especially greenhouse gases. But I also wonder whether it’s just the shot in the arm European and North American environmental technology firms need. Maybe this will give them the economies of scale and proof that green can be done big that they need.