Peter Head is a Director of Arup, the English design and engineering firm, and head of their project for Dongtan, a planned ecocity on an island near Shanghai. He worked at the forefront of steel bridge technology in his early career, leading to his current role as Chairman of the Steel Construction Institute. Peter is a Recipient of the Engineering Silver Medal for an outstanding contribution to British Industry. Asked by the Mayor of London to become a Commissioner on the newly formed London Sustainable Development Commission, he has been in that position since 2002.
LONDON, England (CNN) — It’s easy to overlook the impact buildings have on greenhouse gas emissions, but the places where we live and work contribute over 30 percent of global greenhouse emissions.
An artist’s impression of how the Dongtan eco-city will look like when it is completed. The first stage is due to open in 2010.
Although the term “green architecture” was only coined about 20 years ago, architects have been embracing environmental or sustainable design for decades.
Today, architects are transforming our urban landscapes in ways which were previous unimaginable. Aided by cutting edge design and construction techniques, the bold new structures of today owe much to the techniques used by pre and early industrial pioneers. [Read this article]
And Peter Head was given his own profile, talking about his work in Dongtan.
(CNN) — Peter Head is Director of urban design and development at Arup, the global design and business consulting firm.
Peter Head, of global design and business consulting firm Arup, is a noted pioneer of sustainable development.
Head is in charge of planning and development for Dongtan, the eco-city planned for construction on Chongming Island near Shanghai. Head himself describes it as: “the world’s largest sustainable development project.”
It was while he was overseeing the construction of the Second Severn Crossing — a bridge across the Bristol Channel linking England and Wales opened in 1996 — that he first became interested in sustainable development.
In August 2005, Arup was contracted by the Shanghai Industrial Investment Corporation (SIIC) to design and master plan an eco-city called Dongtan, near Shanghai. Dongtan will be a city of three villages that meet to form a city centre. The first demonstrator phase of the city aims to be completed by 2010, in time for the World Expo in Shanghai, and will accommodate a population of up to 10,000. Later phases of development will see the city grow to hold a population of around 80,000 by 2020 and up to 400,000 by 2050. The delicate nature of the Dongtan wetlands adjacent to the site has been one of the driving factors of the city’s design. We plan to protect and enhance the existing wetlands by returning agricultural land to a wetland state creating a ‘buffer-zone’ between the city and the mudflats – at its narrowest point, this ‘buffer-zone’ will be 3.5 kilometers wide. The project will increase bio-diversity on Chongming Island, and will create a city that runs entirely on renewable energy for its buildings, its infrastructure and its transport needs. Dongtan will recover, recycle and reuse 90% of all waste in the city, with the eventual aim of becoming a zero waste city. Dongtan eco-city incorporates many traditional Chinese design features and combines them with a sustainable approach to modern living, but not at the expense of creating a city that is recognizable as a ‘Chinese’ city. Dongtan demonstrates to the world China’s ability to work closely with the environment and has provided a methodology for sustainable communities across China and beyond.