Madrid’s Shell Bridge gets its concrete dome – West 8

Construction is moving along at the first Shell Bridge, West 8+ MRIO designed for the City of Madrid. 100 m3 of concrete was poured inbetween the two layers of the wooden mold, moving another step closer to the desired end result: a concrete dome.

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SOURCE: WEST 8
IMAGE CREDIT: WEST 8

City planning to stop brain drain

Changchun, Jilin China is planning a 12.5 sq km(4.82 sq m) Hi-Tech development Zone to stop the brain drain of its keen entrepreneurs and skilled workers to Shanghai and Beijing. Chanchun is currently planning to build the Changchun Northeast Innovation Center as apart of the Zone to support and encourage its 27 higher learning institutions, 100 technological research institutes and over 40 laboratories.

The Hi-Tech Zone development is scheduled to finish planning and design by the end of 2009. The first phase of the development should be completed by September 2011, the 2nd phase operational in September 2013 and final stage completed in March 2015.

The Hi-Tech Zone will include R&D and production of photoelectronics, LED’s, semiconductor lasers and medical equipment. The zone will also include R&D in biological, medical, high polymer and rare earth chemistry, nano materials and special construction materials.

SOURCE: Xinhua – City tasks innovation center with ending brain drain

Las Vegas Wetlands Park grows by another 112 acres

Last Friday saw the dedication of 112 acres to further expand the current 2,900-acre Las Vegas Wetlands Park. The land was acquired along the east end of Tropicana Road through funding acquired from fining developers for disturbing environmentally sensitive areas.

Currently the price tag for works at the Wetland Park has reach $80 million with a further $15 million needed for future projects such as a nature center with interactive displays.

SOURCE: Digital Journal

Taipei to hold Internation Flora Expo in 2010

Taipei, Taiwan will hold a International Gardening and Horticulture Expo from the Nov. 6, 2010 to April 25, 2011. The expo will showcase the indigenous vegetation and be a unique fusion of horticulture and technology. The Expo site is 91.8 hectacres with 14 pavillions and four areas featuring different themes. With a budget for the Expo is The NT$3.53 billion it is expected to help Taiwan’s horticulture sector boost its production value by 23 percent.

SOURCE: Taiwan News Online – Taipei hopes to impress with 2010 Taipei International Flora Expo –

Scientists investigate urban climate in the Netherlands

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Reseachers at Wageningen University and Research Centre (WUR) have been riding around Rotterdam and Arnhem in the Netherlands on two trikes mapping and measuring the urban climate during four time intervals on a 24 hour day. The measuring was to study the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect that often causes heat stress.

The measurements on 6 August in Rotterdam showed that during day time the city centre was two degrees warmer on average than Zestienhoven(Rotterdam) airport, which is located outside the city. A striking observation was that the city park De Twee Heuvelen was 2.4 degrees cooler than Zestienhoven. This means that the differences in the afternoon in the city can rise to 4.4 degrees centigrade. During the late evening (22-24 hours), the city centre was more than 5 degrees warmer than Zestienhoven. The route near the national Green Heart (Doenkade) turned out to be even cooler (2 degrees C) than Zestienhoven. The difference in temperature between the city and countryside consequently amounted to more than 7 degrees during nocturnal hours.

In the late afternoon the felt air temperature – the air temperature perceived by the human body – was 28 degrees C at Zestienhoven, the temperature at the city centre of Rotterdam (in the sun and out of the wind) would feel more than 6 degrees higher – so well above 30° C. Surprisingly, similar effects were measured in the much smaller city of Arnhem.

For the measurements (before sunrise, midday, late afternoon, after sunset), days with maximum temperatures above 25° C were necessary. With the two cargo bikes with measurement equipment, the researchers cycled along two previously determined routes through a number of characteristic urban districts, such as an industrial area, an older residential area, a city park and the harbour area. The researchers plan to take more measurements later this year and in 2010.

SOURCE: Wageningen University and Research Centre (WUR)
IMAGE: Wageningen University and Research Centre (WUR)

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