The relationship between the UK and China has experienced a Golden Era since 2015. During this period, CBBC, in partnership with the Asia Architecture and Urbanism Alliance, the Shenzhen Human Settlement Environment Seminar, and the Guangdong Innovative Talents Promotion Association, successfully held the UK-China City & Architecture Forum on the 12th of October in Shenzhen.
The theme of this year’s forum was “New · Tradition · Integration”. Professionals from the industry analysed current trends in the real estate sphere, and discussed how the city can be better planned and buildings better designed to cope with the changes these may bring. They covered topics including urban regeneration, green buildings, and architectural design. Leading property consultants and design companies from the UK were invited to share case studies and their experience in the field.
Since China is now facing similar challenges that the UK faced some time ago during the process of urban renewal, the UK’s experiences can help China confront these challenges. Mr Andrew Ould, the Deputy Consul General at the British Consulate General in Guangzhou, said: “From successfully reducing smog in our cities to building the first “garden cities”, the UK has accumulated a wealth of knowledge and expertise around what works and what doesn't as a country renews its cities. The UK’s architects, master-planners and related consultants are already hugely expanding their work in China, and I look forward to being in a position to announce further deals between UK companies and Chinese partners through more events such as today's and through our wider cooperation. ”
Urban renewal is the keyword in future urban development. Savills, a British real estate agent and consultant with a longstanding reputation, analysed Shenzhen's urban renewal process from the angle of the development of its real estate industry. Ms Fennie Zhao, the Director of Savills Shenzhen Investment, expressed that good results have been achieved since Shenzhen started renovating its urban village in 2004 and old industrial district in 2007. In the modern era, urban renewal can effectively alleviate the current contradiction between land supply and demand, and is conducive to the stable development of house prices, the improvement of affordable housing and the gathering of public support. It can also help to improve the quality of housing and remodel the value of buildings.
Another architectural design company from the UK, ADAM Architecture, shared insights from a unique angle on its experience regarding the coexistence of modern and traditional buildings during the urban renewal process. Mr Robbie Kerr, Design Director at ADAM Architecture, analysed the possibility of retaining the features of old buildings, certain techniques and concepts to achieve this, as well as successful cases in the UK’s history: combining the company’s expertise in classical and traditional design.
The issue of senior housing during the urban renewal process was also highlighted. PRP, an architectural design company with a wealth of successful cases, also shared its experiences and showcased its projects in the UK, as well as those across China.
Following the keynote speeches, the speakers held an in-depth dialogue on the topic of new opportunities for urban renewal in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. Participants also actively raised their questions and exchanged ideas with the speakers.
The participants cited advanced cases of urban renewal in Shanghai and the UK, and put forward new ideas such as "bypassing detours" and "localisation renewal". Three aspects of urban renewal in the Greater Bay Area were discussed: the institutional differences in the system, the balance between government engagement and the market, and the question of consumers.
Through this dialogue between the speakers, the forum has strengthened exchange and cooperation between Chinese and UK companies in the sustainable development of cities and buildings, bringing new ideas to the development of industry and urban construction.
For more information about this event and next year’s exchange, please contact Rita Huang at:
T: +86 (0)20-8883 2120 ext. 804