FuturArc Prize
Asia's leading Green building design competition read more.
FuturArc Green Leadership Award
read more.
Main Feature
The FuturArc Interview
DANIEL KAMMEN-Director of Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory, Professor at the University of California – Berkeley’s Energy and Resources Group read more.
Year-end Report


CURRENT ISSUE - Nov-Dec 2014

Table of Contents

Main feature
Edison Versus Tesla for Architects: Buildings, Electricity and the Future

The FuturArc Interview
Daniel Kammen – director of Renewable and Appropriate Energy laboratory, professor at the University of California – Berkeley’s Energy and Resources Group

Year-end Reports
Country Report: Philippines
Country Report: Singapore
Country Report: Thailand
Vertical Greenery
ABC Building
Desa Mahkota School
Hope Floats
Hanoi Museum
Salvaged Ring
Gran Rubina Tower 1
Tamedia Office Building
In Conversation with Jamie Dwyer & Erin Leitch
Special Focus
Milestones & Events
Product Advertorials


Year-end Issue | Technology versus Technique 

Here is a question we struggle with, issue after issue: what type of project best represents Asia? The problem here is the underlying assumption that there is one Asia. There are in fact several: the developed and developing, the urban and rural. Add culture, history, politics and climate change into the mix and it is impossible to generalise. No single building can represent it all.

Take two articles featured in this issue: vertical greenery and the floating school. The former applies mostly to urban conditions where loss of green cover is offset by building-integrated greenery. Does it work? Does every dollar spent (plants, irrigation, maintenance) deliver hard outcomes (energy savings, urban heat island) in the short term?

With the floating school, these questions seem irrelevant, bordering on naive. Capital outlay is low. Benefits are almost always soft and long term. The problem is largely social, relating to the wellness of communities.

Neither project solely ‘represents’ Asia.

Let’s rephrase the question: when is it better to use technology; when should we rely on technique? Technology is the procurement of hardware (landscaping attached to a building façade). Technique is the craft of putting something together (a school that moves from village to village on waterways).

There are several terrific examples of technique in this issue. The café in Nha Trang, Vietnam, relies on scrap wood. The school in Malaysia relies on natural ventilation and daylighting. The office building in Jakarta, Indonesia, has a sophisticated shading strategy on its façades.

Is technology a poor second cousin to technique? Not always.

Our US correspondent, Jalel Sager, asks an important question on energy systems: how should electrical power be generated and distributed? We’ve grown accustomed to AC power produced in power plants that run on fossil fuels, distributed across long distances with step-up, step-down transformers. This configuration results in massive efficiency losses. Can we afford to keep doing this? In the Main Feature, Jalel breaks this down to the question of AC versus DC—why we must rethink the mix. In his interview with Daniel Kammen, a leading global energy expert, we hear more on what the future holds.

It seems there is a place for both technique and technology. It takes a thinking person to know what matters most, and where.

As with the last year-ender, we feature several country reports: Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines. A country report, if you are seeing it for the first time, is a snapshot of recent developments with a focus on Green. This could be projects or policies, events or initiatives.



November 2014 News Roundup

India has constructed its first net-zero energy building with adoption of solar passive design and energy-efficient building materials. The building boasts an earthquake-resistant structure with a total plinth area of 31,488 square metres. read more


October 2014 News Roundup

Across the Bay of Jakarta, off the city’s northern coast, a 35-kilometre wall is being built to combat flooding in the Indonesian capital. Shaped like a Garuda, the aim of the wall is to prevent floods and provide alternative land area for residential areas and offices. read more


September 2014 News Roundup

Commute times in some of Asia’s most congested cities are seen to drop, after a breakthrough in traffic prediction modelling, trialled in Bangkok and recognised at this year’s APEC Science Award for Innovation, Research and Education (ASPIRE) in Beijing on 17 September. read more


August 2014 News Roundup

Through an APEC project, intellectual property (IP) experts from Korea are helping villages in rural areas to improve their lives. In Papua New Guinea, the team had to find a way to pump water from existing water sources during the dry season. read more


July 2014 News Roundup

National Chiao Tung University’s Orchid House project won first prize at the prestigious Solar Decathlon Europe in France on July 5. The first time an Asian team has come up on top in any category, the project achieved a perfect score and beat out 19 contestants from around the world to clinch the top spot in the urban design, transportation and affordability category. read more

<More Web Exclusive Content>



Sliding System

When it comes to realising a vision, a project deserves the best quality materials available. Using subpar windows and sliding doors may greatly diminish the aesthetics, integrity and longevity of a development. read more

Energy Saving Locking Devices

Fire & Security Hardware Pty Limited (FSH), now part of the Allegion family, has launched a new product range called EcoLine, comprising energy-saving electromechanical locking devices equipped with high-security systems. read more

Pump Audits
Building owners in Asia are increasingly adopting Green rating schemes to certify their buildings’ environmental performance and enhance their assets’ Green credentials, which can later translate to higher asset value. read more
LED Modules
Vossloh-Schwabe’s 220 to 240 V LED modules allow users to switch easily to LED without requiring extra work on existing luminaries. Available with or without a heat sink, the LED modules in the ReadyLine series encompass a DoB (Driver on Board) system that allows for easy integration even in limited space. read more
Bathroom Fittings and Systems
A collaboration with Indonesian designer Alvin Tjitrowirjo, the TOTO Toja series is a comprehensive and versatile range of bathroom fittings and systems catering to the needs of modern spaces. read more
Mechanical Switches
NEO’s mechanical switches allow the flexibility to mix and match configurations for use in small- and large-scale projects. Equipped withhorizontal dollies, the NEO C-Metro range is equipped with LED locators that give off a white or blue glow to let users know where each switch is located at night. read more
Eco-friendly, Long-lasting Paint
Majestic True Beauty is the latest paint series from Jotun. Encompassing EcoHealth features, this environmentally-friendly collection ensures the products are safe for the environment and for users. It is also 100 percent free of harmful chemicals such as AEPO, formaldehyde and heavy metals. read more
Inspired by Nature
Human Nature is a new carpet tile collection from Interface which debuted globally in June this year. The carpet tiles, in a skinny plank format, are made from 100 percent recycled nylon yarn. read more
Solutions to Renovation Projects
Recommended for use in remodelling projects, Dow Corning’s 123 Silicone Seal is a preformed silicone extrusion that can be applied over failed sealants and vertical expansion joints, eliminating the need for caulking and sealant removal. read more
    <More Products>  

Asia Pacific Regional Network Leadership Awards 

The World Green Building Council’s Asia-Pacific Network was host to the inaugural Asia Pacific Regional Network Leadership Awards in Green building on 4 September. read more

Special Focus: International Green Building Conference 2014
Bringing humans back into the spotlight was a key theme of the Singapore Green Building Week (SGBW) 2014, held in September (BEX Asia was held for the seventh time; International Green Building Conference for the sixth time) at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Centre in Singapore. read more
Chartered Institute of Building Hong Kong Conference 2014
The Chartered Institute of Building Hong Kong (CIOB HK) hosted a one-day conference on 12 September in the New World Millennium Hong Kong Hotel, with a focus on the theme Construction Management Mastermind: Striving to Excellence. read more
Green Building Council Indonesia’s 5th Year Celebration
On 9 September, the Green Building Council (GBC) Indonesia celebrated its five years of achievement in the Green building industry at Patio Central Park Mall, Jakarta with the theme Green Start from Our Homeread more
BEX Asia 2014
With the theme of Building Today, Sustaining Tomorrow, BEX Asia 2014 took place from 1 to 3 September 2014 at Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre. It was held in conjunction with the International Green Building Conference (IGBC) which was organised by the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) and co-located with DesignInteriors 2014read more
 Archifest 2014

Archifest is the annual architecture festival of ideas for Singapore that started in 2007 and organised by the Singapore Institute of Architects (SIA). In its eighth year running, Archifest 2014 celebrated Singapore’s urban environment, and served as a platform for local and regional communities for reflection, question, collaboration and experimentationread more

World Architecture Festival 2014
Held from 1 to 3 October 2014 at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore, the seventh World Architectural Festical (WAF) featured over 288 shortlisted projects from 55 countries, which vied for the 33 WAF awards across three main sections of Completed Buildings, Landscape and Future Projects. read more
Autodesk Hong Kong BIM Awards 2014

The Asia Pacific Network (APN) meeting was hosted by the Green Building Council Indonesia (GBC Indonesia) from 7 to 9 May 2014 in Jakarta. The event is a World Green Building Council (WGBC) mid-year convention attended by Green Building Council delegates from the Asia-Pacific region. read more

Offical opening of Hong Kong's exhibition at Venice Biennale

Held on 17 July 2014 at The Mira, Hong Kong, the eighth annual Autodesk Hong Kong BIM Awards gave recognition to individuals, students and organisations for their creative use of Building Information Modelling (BIM) in bringing about cost savings, sustainability and efficiency for projects in the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industries. read more

    <More Happenings>  

Finalists announced for WorldGBC’s Green Building Leadership Awards

WorldGBC has revealed the finalists for the inaugural Asia Pacific Regional Network Leadership Awards in Green Building. The biennial awards honours outstanding organisations for their commitment to sustainability, and celebrates innovative Green building projects.

Singapore’s Vertical Garden Enters the Guinness World Records as the Largest

A vertical Green wall built on the façade of the Tree House Condominium in Singapore was officially recognised by the Guinness World Records as the world’s largest vertical garden.

Update from Thai Green Building Institute

The Thai Green Building Institute (TGBI) has announced that it is preparing the TREES (Thai’s Rating of Energy and Environmental Sustainability) standard for core and shell, and existing buildings. This new Green building rating system is scheduled to be completed in 2015.

Richard Rogers to chair the World Architecture Festival 2014 super-jury

The World Architecture Festival (WAF) has unveiled this year’s ‘super jury’ comprising of a selection of the world’s leading architects and designers, led by renowned British architect Richard Rogers. He will be joined on the super-jury by Rocco Yim, Julie Eizenberg, Enric Ruiz Geli and Peter Rich.

Shigeru Bayan Wins 2014 Pritzker Architecture Prize

This year’s Pritzker Prize goes to Shigeru Ban, a Tokyo-born, 56-year-old architect with offices in Tokyo, Paris and New York. He is the seventh architect from Japan to receive the honour, which will be officially awarded on 13 June 2014, at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan Joins with AECOM to Advance Sustainable Development in Malaysia
[Press Release] Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan (Federal Territory Foundation), a foundation body under Malaysia’s Ministry of Federal Territories, and AECOM signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to establish a center of excellence in Greater Kuala Lumpur Klang Valley (Greater KL/KV) to advance sustainable urban development in Malaysia. 
Danfoss Turbocor and Haier Build Highly Efficient Air Conditioning Systems for Kai Fu Jian Guo Hotel
[Press Release] As for energy consumption in hotel operations, air-conditioning systems take a large proportion due to long operation times, i.e. running around the clock. Statistics show it accounts for 30-50 percent of the energy consumption of the hotel.

World Architecture Festival Award Entries Now Open
The World Architecture Festival (WAF)—the largest, live architectural awards programme—has opened the entries for WAF 2014. The awards set the benchmark for architectural excellence, where talented architects from all over the world gather to showcase their building designs to more than 2,500 architects, clients and journalists from over 65 countries. 

Philips Creates Interactive Lighting Experiences at i Light Marina Bay 2014
Philips has provided LED technology to two installations at i Light Marina Bay, a sustainable light art installation festival which runs from 7 to 30 March 2014 at Marina Bay Waterfront, Singapore. The two installations are “BEAT” by design and engineer firm Arup, and “iSWARM” by the Singapore University of Design and Technology (SUTD). Philips is also the festival’s Sustainability Workshop Partner.
  <More News>  
Door Hardware

Fusion offers an extensive collection of door hardware that can be integrated into an array of rooms, homes and spaces. It is custom-designed and built-to-order, ensuring that each piece will fit in wherever it is placed.


Silicone Seal

Dow Corning’s 123 Silicone Seal is a preformed silicone extrusion. It can be bonded to a wide variety of substrates using the 795 Silicone Building Sealant or 791 Silicone Weatherproofing Sealant.

Dow Corning Corporation
T +86 21 3899 5336  



Designed and developed by Newform, Linfa is a new single control mixer collection with eco-friendly features that generate water and energy savings.

Viva Nueva Pte Ltd
T +65 6744 6938


LEDSpot by Vossloh-Schwabe is series of LED modules with high-powered LEDs and different optic attachments.

Vossloh-Schwabe Pte Ltd
T +65 6275 7533

    <More As Advertised Products>  



Green Building Council Australia

December 16, 2014
Green Star leaders recognised in 2014
The shift to sustainability gathers pace, as the GBCA certifies 150 Green Star projects during 2014 – a 43% increase on 2013.
December 12, 2014
Leading the way in 2014
A word from GBCA Chief Executive Officer, Romilly Madew
December 11, 2014
First Green Star - Communities rating elevates Brisbane Airport’s sustainability to new heights
The GBCA has awarded Australia’s first Green Star – Communities rating to Brisbane Airport Corporation for the entire Brisbane Airport site.

DesignBuild Source - Sourceable

December 19, 2014
CFMEU Should Face Criminal Charges: Royal Commission
Criminal charges should be bought against the nation’s biggest building union, according to the interim report of the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption.
December 19, 2014
UNSW Receives Million Dollar Endowment for Architecture
The teaching of architecture at UNSW has received a boost with the endowment of a new chair and scholarship program.
December 18, 2014
Green Building Goes Mainstream in Australasia
A new report on the state of the green building market in Australia and New Zealand has found that sustainability measures have emerged as an unmistakable part of the mainstream industry practices over the past five years.

DesignBuild Source - Architecture

December 19, 2014
UNSW Receives Million Dollar Endowment for Architecture
The teaching of architecture at UNSW has received a boost with the endowment of a new chair and scholarship program.
December 17, 2014
World Leading Architect Sues Google
One of the world’s most renowned architects is suing technology giant Google over allegations the latter stole trade secrets in respect of the development of software which allows users to design buildings in an environmentally friendly manger.
December 16, 2014
Cities: The Engines of Prosperity and Sustainability
As far back as 1972, former Prime Minister Gough Whitlam noted that “practically every major national problem relates to cities."

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