Connecting Shenzhen VIPs to Boston’s Genzyme Center SME – priceless

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Just over a week ago, I had the pleasure of co-hosting a visit to Genzyme Center for a delegation of 15 officials and business professionals from Shenzhen, including Vice Mayor Mr.Tang Jie, Shenzhen Investment Holdings Co. Ltd (SIHC) Chairman Mr. Fan Mingchun, and Shenzhen Institute of Buildings Research Director Ms. Ye Qing.   Our real host was Mr. Lou Capozzi, Facilities Manager (extraordinaire) at Genzyme Center.  We are proud to provide the building management system which manages 40,000 points of control – lighting, heating, air conditioning, and fire alarm monitoring.  As Lou says, “It is the brain that monitors everything in the building.”

Green, efficient, comfortable and beautiful. Credit: Anton Grassl

Even with such impressive guests from Shenzhen on this tour, the shining star was this beautiful, high performance LEED Platinum building, which was built on a highly contaminated vacant lot that was once a coal gasification plant.  One of the Shenzhen delegates remarked “This is the most beautiful green building I have ever seen!”  In part, this is due to the highly functional atrium, which is engineered to maximize use of natural light, with an elaborate system of reflective stainless steel blinds, heliostats, prisms, and perhaps most beautiful, the long chandeliers that hang in the atrium.

Lou Capozzi is one of my favorite high performance green building fanatic, and his expertise, commitment, and involvement from “floor 2” transformed this tour into a living history of a building that is clearly well-managed, and a product of continuous care and  innovation.

For more information about the building management and controls, read the Schneider Electric Genzyme Center case study.  Also available, a comprehensive case study on the USGBC website. Visit the Genzyme Center website to learn more about organizing a tour of Genzyme Center or take a Virtual Tour online.

The impressive Shenzhen delegation joined us for just one afternoon and one evening of their multi-city tour of different high-tech companies, green buildings and green-tech projects that they hope will add even more value as they continue to embark on large commercial projects such as the SHENZHEN BAY Technology and Ecology Park, which is essentially a large eco-district including industrial buildings, office, commercial, hotels and apartments which is projected to be complete in April 2016.  Shenzhen IBR has been actively involved in this project, which leverage 3D layered urban design, with a focus on integrating city, social, corporate, and public uses.  It is also very focused on nurturing new strategic emerging industries, and the people that will live and work there.  Perhaps in a few years, I will be able to blog about progress in super high performance buildings in Shenzhen!

One thing was clear during this meeting—we are connected.  Regardless of what continent or culture we come from, our differences seemed small compared to our shared interests in sustainability, high performance design, and an ambition to build (and manage) even better buildings and communities in the future.

About Genzyme Corporation: As one of the world’s foremost biotechnology companies, Genzyme Corporation, (a division of Sanofi) is dedicated to improving the lives of patients suffering from difficult diseases. Relying on a core set of values—innovation, transparency, collaboration and the entrepreneurial spirit—Genzyme has grown since 1981 from a small start-up to a global company with more than 10,000 employees in locations spanning the globe.

About Shenzhen Investment Holdings Co. Ltd (SIHC):  Shenzhen Investment Holdings Co. Ltd is a large scale municipal state-owned enterprise with property management, capital operation, investment and financing as core businesses.   It has 79 wholly-owned or majority owned controlling companies, and 42 invested companies in sectors including real estate, finance, securities, insurance, high-tech investment, high-tech industries, utilities, environmental protection, architectural design, consulting, etc.

About Shenzhen Institute of Building Research Co. Ltd:  Shenzhen Institute of Building Research (IBR), founded in 1982, is the comprehensive science and technology research institute providing services for a whole lifecycle of buildings and urban development including research and consultation, urban and rural planning, design, project quality inspection, materials and indoor environment testing, project management, building culture dissemination and more. In 2008, IBR was accredited as National Hi-Tech Enterprise and the Most Influential Organization of Building Efficiency in China and then as the 11th 5 -Year Plan Period Pioneer Organization of Science and Technology in the Construction Field.

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