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Novare builds Zambia’s first EDGE-certified office building

22nd April 2022

     

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This article has been supplied as a media statement and is not written by Creamer Media. It may be available only for a limited time on this website.

On 7 April 2022, Zambia’s President Hakainde Hichilema officiated the launch of the new head office of Standard Chartered Bank in Lusaka and commended it for being the first office building in Zambia to receive an EDGE (Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies) certification.

This building was developed by Novare Equity Partners, a business unit of the Novare Group (“Novare”), which is a leading South African provider of investment solutions to institutional investors - with a focus on the African continent.

Standard Chartered Bank’s vision is to become the most responsible and sustainable bank in the world. As a real estate developer affecting sustainable change in the built environment by building green, Novare was therefore a natural choice for development of its head office.

Embedding EDGE in a building’s DNA

An innovation of the International Finance Corporation (IFC), EDGE is a green building certification system that enables seamless and cost-effective green building. The aim of EDGE is to reduce the environmental impact of buildings in three areas, namely: direct energy consumption, water consumption, and the energy footprint of construction materials. These efforts also contribute towards the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.

Standard Chartered House not only successfully achieved EDGE certification, but also exceeded the criteria by achieving over 50% reduction in energy usage, a 55% reduction in water usage and 34% less energy embodied in materials, against a target of 20% for each. The following highlights are some of the measures that were implemented to accomplish this.

Energy

The most energy efficient window to wall ratio was considered in the design of the building and the materials used. Greater thermal efficiency was achieved through the application of an insulating screed to the roof slab, use of higher thermal performance glass (high-spec double glazing or “low E”), strategic implementation of shading systems and application of a reflective roof colour.

A variable refrigerant flow (VRF) cooling system was designed for the building, which ensures a varied flow of refrigerant to cool down any indoor units, based on demand. The installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) panels provides additional shading on the roof, which also contributes to a reduction in the need for using air conditioning. Furthermore, the panels being an alternative form of energy, ensured a reduction of carbon footprint.

LED energy-saving light bulbs were used throughout the building, supplemented by occupancy sensors in select areas such as bathrooms and conference rooms.

Water

All bathrooms were fitted with low-flow faucets, dual flush water closets and waterless urinals. Low flow aerators were fitted on the taps to restrict the water flow to 2.9 litres per minute. All kitchen sinks were also fitted with water-efficient faucets. An onsite borehole, water treatment plant and purification system provide alternative sources of water.

Materials

The internal environmental quality (IEQ) is managed through use of materials with low volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions. The reinforced concrete frame structure used medium-weight hollow concrete blocks for the walls and areas of insulated dry-walling for internal partitioning.

Achieving a P-grade rating

The Standard Chartered House furthermore achieved a P-grade (premium grade) building rating, which is higher than a triple A-grade. In reality, this means that apart from its notable architecture, common areas with exceptional finishes and an exceptional repertoire of amenities and features, it is also an industry pacesetter in technologies and possesses an environmental certification. Some of the key technological features of the building are as follows:

Acoustics: The open plan offices and meeting rooms all received a high level of acoustic treatment to absorb sound, eliminate noise and enhance privacy.

Building management system (BMS): A world-class BMS links high-level digital ICT infrastructure, efficient heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems, and LED lights with occupancy sensors.

Backup power: A critical component of the facilities is an integrated backup power system which includes photovoltaics (PV) and robust protection systems for uninterrupted power supply (UPS).

Secure network and server rooms: The offices have raised floors with continuous access to state-of-the-art server and network rooms that are both secured and safeguarded against fire by advanced fire suppression systems.

Digital display screens: Interactive electronic signs were selected for the external building signage, to allow immediate updates of images and branding.

Online booking system: All meeting rooms are connected to an online booking system, to support optimal operations.

Security: The building is supported by a cutting-edge, computerised security system, including a CCTV network that covers the entire building, as well as barrier systems at all access points.

An African growth story

Throughout the development of this flagship property, Novare set out to make use of local products and suppliers and appoint local contractors wherever possible. One such local contractor that was integral to the project, was Velos Construction who was appointed as the main contractor. Velos Construction was in turn empowered to employ more workers from the area and went on to also become the first contractor in Zambia to help build an EDGE-certified office building, which is a major new milestone in the history of the business.

Says Nick Frangeskides, Managing Director of Velos Construction: “Even though Velos Construction is one of Zambia’s most established construction companies, being able to partner with Novare and form part of constructing such an exceptionally-designed and highly technical building according to EDGE specifications, has catapulted our company to completely new heights.”

Standard Chartered House in Zambia is only one of the flagship properties that form part of Novare’s African real estate portfolio. To view the rest of its portfolio, or for more information,

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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