Andrew Michler

US Embassy in Beijing Showcases Energy Efficient Design

by , 05/06/10

US Embassy Beijing, US Embassy China, Skidmore Owings and Merrill, Green Building design, water catchment, fritted glass skin, Embassy art, sustainable architecture, green design, green building

The US Embassy in Beijing, China, designed by Craig Hartman of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, is the State Department’s second largest project in its history. Like the newly unveiled embassy in London, it is intended to respect the host country, American democratic ideals, security, and environmental sensitivity. The complex is really a neighborhood within a walled green space. Art, natural light, water reclamation, and other sustainable and thoughtful features abound and have lead to the project earning several awards since its completion in 2008.

US Embassy Beijing, US Embassy China, Skidmore Owings and Merrill, Green Building design, water catchment, fritted glass skin, Embassy art, sustainable architecture, green design, green building

The 10-acre complex is broken into three main areas — one for social and community functions, one for a professional office, and one for the consulate’s activities (the Consular Pavilion). The project’s green building features revolve around water and light. A rain catchment system feeds the adjacent lotus pond, which clarifies the water and provides a heat sink to assist in cooling the buildings. The surrounding garden, designed by the landscape architecture firm PWP, provides plenty of water features and green space with a collection of plants from the Americas and China and also acts as a security parameter.

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5 Comments

  1. SOM's China World Trade... August 30, 2010 at 2:29 pm

    [...] energy efficient LED lighting on the exterior of the structure, and a crystalline facade covered in fritted glass and metal fins that act as vertical sunshades, maximizing interior daylighting for whole [...]

  2. odboy24@gmail.com May 31, 2010 at 3:37 am

    I like how we can’t get any decent designs on US soil. Most buildings are cookie cutter designs.

  3. lyleduncan May 14, 2010 at 5:57 pm

    I like this a lot, it is great seeing much more energy efficient buildings be built all over the world. If you currently own a building and are using fluorescent bulbs, you should look into getting T5 bulbs to save more energy also. http://www.lumiversal.com has a nice selection of different retrofit kits that you can buy that will make the change from T12 or T8 bulbs to T5 bulbs cheap and easy. Plus, all the money that you save on using less energy pays for the retrofit in just few years.

  4. harrypatelzilla@gmail.com May 8, 2010 at 1:57 am

    Really nice looking building!

  5. Gus Salas May 7, 2010 at 1:15 pm

    Great ideas

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