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U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Technical Assistance to Beichuan Reconstruction: Creating and Designing Low- to Zero-carbon Communities in New Beichuan, Sichuan Province

Abstract

Beichuan county, located in north of Sichuan Province, was the most severely damaged township in last May's Sichuan earthquake. Reconstruction of a new Beichuan is a high-profiled project by the governments. In addition to constructing structurally-sound, quake-safe buildings in the new development, rebuilding Beichuan presents an opportunity for constructing new low- to zero-carbon communities in the region. In fact, building up greener communities in the reconstruction has become a top priority for the county, which, at an estimated 7 square km, is expected to have 50,000 residents in 2015 and 70,000 in 2020. The recent focus of construction projects is on the east side of the river, while land on its west bank will be reserved for development in the mid- to long-term. In the near term, a number of new public buildings are scheduled to be constructed starting in November 2009. As indicated by the deputy county chief, Mr. He Wang, the construction timeframe is unusually tight. Many buildings, although in various stages of planning and design, will be constructed starting in November 2009. Timely expert advice on design improvement and planning considerations will benefit the integration of energy efficiency and environmental benign elements in Beichuan's reconstruction, and will help promoting integrated development of green communities with low- to zero-carbon emission from the region.

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