Image: Ronald Lu & Partners
Image: Ronald Lu & Partners

CIC Zero Carbon Park (CIC ZCP)
Hong Kong


Location Hong Kong
Coordinates 22° N, 114° E
Occupancy Type Multipurpose: Office, exhibition, ecological park
Typology Existing Building
Climate Type Subtropical
Project Area 14,700 m2 (including the building with a footprint of approximately 1,400 m2 and a landscaped area for public use)
Date of Completion 2012
Grid Connectivity Grid-connected
EPI 102.87 kWh/m2/yr
Architect Ronald Lu & Partners
Energy Consultants Ove Arup & Partners HK Ltd

Kowloon’s CIC-Zero Carbon Park is Hong Kong’s first net zero energy and carbon emissions complex. Developed by Construction Industry Council (CIC), designed by Ronald Lu & Partners with engineering support from Ove Arup & Partners HK Ltd, the facility exhibits state-of-the-art eco-building design and technologies. It aims to inspire the construction industry both locally and internationally by promoting low carbon living in a densely populated, sub-tropical city such as Hong Kong.

Image: Ronald Lu & Partners
Image: CIC ZCP
Image: CIC ZCP
Image: Ronald Lu & Partners

CIC Zero Carbon Park (CIC ZCP)
Hong Kong

Daylight and Orientation 

The glazing on NW facade is oriented towards the unobstructed sky providing ample light while sheltering from direct sunlight or glare. Light shelves provided on the SE and NW façade shade the periphery of the building and distribute the daylight deeper into the space. Light pipes capture the light from the domes of the roof. These highly reflective tubes provide light in spaces devoid of fenestrations. External glass walls are shaded as per different solar conditions on each orientation by external shades.


The main façade faces southeast to optimise prevailing summer winds – a perfect strategy for combating Hong Kong’s humid weather conditions. The building is equipped with two wind catchers on the roof. The higher wind velocity at the roof level forces the air down the shaft and cools the building.

Landscaping and Water Efficiency

Nearly 47% of the site is green which significantly reduces the ambient air temperature.

The planted urban native woodland area of approximately 2000 m2 includes 135 native trees of over 40 different species and a diversity of native shrubs, providing food and shelter to attract native wildlife to the city.

A green wall at the entrance resists strong winds and provides thermal insulation.

Rainwater from the sloped roof drips towards a constructed wetland which filters the water through the roots of plants before passing to the recycled water system. A drip Irrigation system distributes water directly to soil to minimize water wastage.

A 180 m3 rainwater storage tank is installed to store rainwater processed from the constructed wetland. This water is used in the landscaped area for irrigation.

Thermal Insulation

An earth cooling tube provides naturally pre-cooled air to reduce the cooling load and energy use in the hotter months when the mechanical cooling system is operating continuously.

The roof is covered with cellular glass insulation, screeding, and a protective surface membrane. About 85% of the roof area is covered with photovoltaic panels while the rest is green roof.

Movable aluminium heat reflecting shades fitted behind the glazing around the exhibition hall reflect, absorb, and emit the radiant heat while diffusing the light.

The high-performance glass wall system offers good thermal and lighting performance to lower cooling load. Daylighting reduces dependence on artificial lighting and energy consumption.

Image: CIC ZCP
Image: CIC ZCP

CIC Zero Carbon Park (CIC ZCP)
Hong Kong

Intelligent Lighting Management

An integrated system for lighting management comprises of:

  • zone control
  • dimmable energy-efficient light fittings
  • pre-set scenes for multi-purpose room
  • timeclock and occupancy sensing
  • daylight harvest and responsive control
  • automatic shade for glare control
  • individual control and BMS integration

Active skylights in the exhibition space are shaded by an integral system of motorized and actuator-controlled external fins to optimise daylighting and solar control.

Most of the spaces have been is illuminated for general use while task lighting has been provided in areas where fine work is carried out.

Optimised Energy Systems / HVAC system

Chilled beams provide radiant cooling effect. Electrical and Mechanical Modular Integrated Construction (emMiC) for Stormwater Air-conditioning System utilizes the stormwater inside the box culvert running underneath as a condensing medium for the air-conditioning system. This reduces energy consumption by 50% compared to a traditional air-cooled system.

High-volume-low-speed fans generate high volume of air flow at low speed.

A high temperature cooling system comprising of underfloor displacement cooling, radiant cooling, and desiccant dehumidification reduces cooling energy use. This system does not need to overcool the air in order to achieve comfort humidity conditions resulting in savings. Conditioned air is supplied to the room at low level and low velocity through the floor plenum.

Indoor Air Quality

An air improvement photovoltaic (AIPV) glass canopy generates energy through Cadmium Telluride nano thin-film photovoltaic technology. The quantum dot nano top coating system decomposes PM 2.5 and volatile organic compounds. This not only improves the IAQ but also reduces maintenance costs.

Metering and Monitoring

The building is equipped with elevators with a regenerative converter that provide a feedback path for energy generated from the braking mode of the motor. Power is also regenerated when the lift is in up-operation with no/light load or down-operation with full/heavy load.

More than 2,500 sensors have been installed to monitor the building performance through a Building Management System (BMS). Real-time information from BMS is displayed on a 3D model of the building along with a dashboard of real-time energy and carbon emission performance. Four on-site microclimate monitoring stations gather information on solar, wind, temperature and humidity parameters.

Image: Ronald Lu & Partners
Image: Ronald Lu & Partners

CIC Zero Carbon Park (CIC ZCP)
Hong Kong

Low Carbon Construction and Materials

The project innovatively uses a lot of sustainable and locally available materials like bamboo flooring, banana tree trunk veneer, and recyclable palm fibre waste. Recycled timber, metal, TiO2 stone and aggregates from construction wastes have also been used extensively. Cool paints as finishes lower surface temperatures by up to 5°C. In addition to the above zero VOC sealant & paints, low-embodied carbon materials, eco pavers, and waste reduction & recycling strategies have been included in the project.

Water Efficiency

Blackwater from toilets is processed through a membrane bio-reactor (MBR) and recycled for flushing purpose. Water-efficient sanitary fixtures such as low-flow basins, shower heads, dual flow water closets and waterless urinal are installed to reduce water consumption by about 40%.

Image: Ronald Lu & Partners

CIC Zero Carbon Park (CIC ZCP)
Hong Kong

Renewable energy is generated on site from solar energy by photovoltaic (PV) panels, AIPV Glass Canopy and from biofuel (one kind of biomass) made of waste cooking oil. The photovoltaic panels are estimated to meet about 57% of energy requirement of the building.

The biodiesel tri-generation system is designed to supply over 129% of its total energy demand.

Energy Information

Estimated energy use 116 MWh/year
Estimated energy use of the landscape area and others 15 MWh/year
Estimated output from biodiesel tri-generation system 143 MWh/year
Estimated output from PV panels 87 MWh/year
Estimated surplus energy export 99 MWh/year
Estimated net CO2 reduction by onsite renewable energy generation 7,100 tonnes (over 50 years)


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