China: GM Technical Center in Shanghai Certified with Silver LEED

 ATC GM Shanghai

China’s built environment has just recently been more packed by another green building in Shanghai. The building is the China Advanced Technical Center (ATC) owned by the General Motors (GM) which has been awarded Silver Certification by the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program.

Building green in China has become imperative as the country is currently the world’s greatest consumer of energy, with their energy consumption has more than doubled in less than 10 years, according to a research done by Solidiance. New building construction in China is now accounting for 20% of China’s primary energy consumption, 30% of its electricity use and almost half of urban carbon emissions.

GM didn’t miss the elephant in the room. Their ATC which comprises research and development (R&D), advanced design, vehicle engineering, powertrain engineering and telematics laboratories adopted a series of green building practices that endowed them the Silver LEED certification.
The ATC building implements the following :

  • Interior and exterior lighting design to reduce light pollution
  • Paving and roofing materials to reduce the heat island effect
  • Water use design to save up to 30% of water used
  • Optimizing energy usage with energy efficient strategies for glazing, lighting and HVAC
  • Enhanced refrigerant material usage
  • Use of recycled and regional material content for construction
  • Increased building air ventilation
  • Use of low-emitting materials such as adhesives, sealants, paints, coatings, and carpets
  • Indoor chemical pollution control
  • Controllability of lighting for energy savings

The GM International Operations and GM China Headquarters in Shanghai, which are adjacent to the ATC, were awarded LEED Gold Certification in December 2010. GM’s home in China was recognized for its high level of energy efficiency and environmentally friendly design and construction.

Bob Socia, the President and Chief Country Operations Officer for GM China remarked, “as China’s most advanced automotive technical development center, the ATC has an opportunity to lead the way in protecting the environment. This is in line with our commitment to help create a greener, safer and healthier community for the people of China.”

The compliance of the Silver LEED certification by the GM’s ATC is adding the evident proof of the increasing green buildings adoption rate in China as the urbanization is rapidly growing and air pollution is worsening. The LEED certification program  is a widely acknowledged green buildings rating system developed by the US Green Building Council (USGBC) to provide a concise framework to identify and apply practical green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions. To date, China remains the world’s third largest LEED market with more than 1,500 registered and certified LEED projects, which account for over 67 million gross square meters in China alone. (

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