Today, the precinct boasts four commercial office buildings, which all are Four Star New Build - Design, Green Star rated with the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA). And, to further communicate Emira’s commitment on sustainability, the office park is currently in the second phase of the ‘green journey’ where it is currently targeting an Existing Building Performance (EBP) rating for the commercial offices in the development.
The EBP tool primarily focuses on monitoring the operational efficiency of a building through a set of industry benchmarks developed by the GBCSA. By practising facility operations in accordance with common environmental metrics, the precinct is able to rate itself against other commercial office buildings with similar characteristics.
The journey from the New Build rating to an EBP rating is particularly important to the development team of Knightsbridge, as it is a great way to assess the buildings operational performance against the building design. Furthermore, a big portion of this new journey is the tracking of energy and water performance, the involvement/participation of the building occupants as the custodians of the buildings and the implementation of various policies and plans. These three spheres together influence the upkeep of an EBP rated building and when collectively managed ensures the likelihood of a building operating in a sustainable, and healthy manner.
The precinct is set to achieve the EBP rating for all four office buildings by year-end 2019. Numerous interventions – underpinned by design methodologies and innovative technology – have been implemented as part of the envelope of the Knightsbridge redevelopment and aimed at minimising the carbon footprint for the entire precinct. Some of these interventions include:
- Publication of a Building User Guide, per building, to facilitate transparent knowledge transfer
- Sustainability Awareness: Driving education through talks, interviews, internal communication, posters and presentations
- Solid Waste Management: Aimed at ensuring recycling is improved and that the amount of solid waste going to landfill is reduced
- Green Cleaning: Exchange of standard cleaning consumables with a range of environmentally friendly cleaning products that reduce negative impacts on occupants
- Green Travel: This encourages the investigation of alternative transportation such as car-pooling, public transport, walking and cycling
- Indoor Air Quality Management: Ensuring the air in the usable area is of great standard which improves productivity and occupant well-being
- Grounds-Keeping Practices: Includes landscape, hard surfaces and integrated pest management plans, to encourage operations that are environmentally friendly and further contribute to reducing any adverse impacts on the delicate nearby ecology and habitat.