Sustainable icon: Qingdao’s model for green living

In an industrial park dedicated to the development of green technologies in cooperation between German and Chinese firms, Qingdao’s Passive House Technology Center showcases how buildings can provide full comfort and functionality with minimal emissions.



The Sino-German Ecopark at Qingdao is a pilot project for cooperation between the People’s Republic of China and Germany in the area of green development. The 30-square-kilometer industrial park showcases innovative approaches to sustainable business, lifestyle, research and development, and high-end industrial solutions. The Ecopark itself uses a decentralized energy supply system.

One of the most iconic structures at the Ecopark is the Passive House Technology Center. With 90 percent less energy consumption than most comparable buildings, it shows that using state-of-the-art building technology, comfortable living is compatible with near-zero emissions. The building’s design complies with strict sustainability standards.

As a demonstration center, it must integrate many subsystems into a single platform. The brain behind this solution is the building management platform Desigo CC from Siemens. Using input from 1,200 data points and 25 control panels that monitor the relevant operational data and analyze the building’s energy consumption, it creates perfect conditions and links more than six different subsystems seamlessly to ensure that they are perfectly coordinated.

Adapting to the user

Desigo Room Automation uses 15 sets of RoomOptiControl modules to ensure lighting and room climate are adjusted precisely to users’ needs.

The system automatically detects unnecessary energy consumption and provides tips for optimum and efficient operation with the Green Leaf button – making the center a model of efficiency and sustainability. At the same time, Desigo Room Automation communicates with the Building Information Modeling (BIM) platform. Thus, BIM is active throughout the building’s entire life cycle.

Visually, too, the iconic building evokes sustainable living and stewardship of resources. The organic curves of its structure, both inside and on the façade, recall the stones of Mount Lao on the Shandong Peninsula, about 600 kilometers to the north – one of the birthplaces of Taoism and a symbol of harmony with nature.


Author: Christopher Findlay, independent journalist based in Zurich.

Picture credits: Siemens AG

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