The new head office of investment giant Remgro, the Millennia Park office building in Stellenbosch has achieved a 5 Star Green certification from the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA), the first time that a refurbished building in South Africa has received this accolade.
The 29-year old building - previously occupied by Gilbey Distillers and Vintners, the Peace Parks Foundation and the World Wide Fund for Nature - was considered an architectural time-piece in the town, and as such it was decided to refurbish the building rather than demolish it. More than 96% of the original structure was retained.
Achieving a Green Star SA rating on a refurbished building, poses an entirely different set of challenges when compared with the construction of a new building, which can be designed green from the start.
Saving on electricity
The existing building had a low floor to ceiling height, and the project team had to design around that. Ceiling space of 260mm was left in the redesign, and all the services needed to fit in that space. This aided the decision to use a chilled beam air conditioning system, rather than conventional air conditioning.
Compared with the original building, the refurbished building will consume about 30% less electricity because of interventions including efficient lighting, solar water heating, and most importantly, the use of the chilled beam air conditioning system.
The old steel roof structure was reused in the manufacturing of the new undercover parking structures. About 70% of all steel on site came from the original building. Over 80% of waste generated during the project was diverted from landfill, and much of it was re-used in the refurbishment process. Crushed stone and concrete from the demolished components of the existing building were re-used to raise the level of the parking area above the 50-year flood line.
Introduction of water harvesting
The refurbished building is also expected to realise water savings of about 79% when compared with the original building. This is owing to the introduction of greywater harvesting, rainwater harvesting, and the use of waterless urinals. The new landscaping at the office park also reduces the water consumption attributable to irrigation by about 50%.
"The GBCSA is proud to award a Green Star SA rating to a refurbished office building for the first time, and pleased to see that companies are giving new life to existing buildings in South Africa. We are encouraged by the results of this project in improving the environment and combatting urban sprawl, as well as the insight gained by the professionals involved," says GBCSA CEO Brian Wilkinson.
LEGAL DISCLAIMER: This Message Board accepts no liability of legal consequences that arise from the Message Boards (e.g. defamation, slander, or other such crimes). All posted messages are the sole property of their respective authors. The maintainer does retain the right to remove any message posts for whatever reasons. People that post messages to this forum are not to libel/slander nor in any other way depict a company, entity, individual(s), or service in a false light; should they do so, the legal consequences are theirs alone. Bizcommunity.com will disclose authors' IP addresses to authorities if compelled to do so by a court of law.