The Integration of Net Zero Designs and Vernacular Vietnamese Architecture



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Rapid urbanization and globalization have brought about cultural erosion in Vietnam as reflected in the International Style buildings that dominate today’s skyline. On top of that, global warming and the negative consequences of human dependence on fossil fuels have aggravated rising sea levels and air and water pollution, which heavily affect the South of Vietnam, particularly Ho Chi Minh City, the economic center of Vietnam. Recently, in COP 27, Vietnam reaffirmed its commitment to net zero by 2050, as initially declared in COP 26, making great strides and investments in the green building sectors. However, Vietnam has no pilot net zero building projects, specifically in the residential area. Buildings are responsible for over 30% of the city’s total energy use and associated greenhouse gas emissions. Furthermore, new-built buildings are high in embodied energy and embodied carbon. Net zero designs, which produce as much energy as they consume, can reduce fossil fuel-reliant energy and promote the implementation of renewable energy. Regarding materials, building methods, and passive design strategies, Vietnamese vernacular architecture is an excellent example of low embodied energy building. Thus, the widespread implementation of net zero designs with vernacular architecture attributes will reduce the energy consumption of the building sector and the embodied carbon within the projects. My thesis focuses on the revitalization of Vietnamese traditional culture and the incorporation of the environmental principles developed by our ancestors in combination with modern net-zero design strategies to optimize the sustainability of building designs. The product of my thesis is a mid-rise, mixed-use net-zero residential development located in Thu Duc City, a municipal city under the administration of Ho Chi Minh City. Thu Duc City is currently under development to become the city’s new financial and technological center. This thesis is a design guide to how Vietnam can move forward with its net zero goal by 2050 and minimize the environmental impacts caused by the building sector while prioritizing the health of Vietnamese people.



Architectural Studies, Architecture, Net Zero, Sustainability, Vietnam