With the focus in the energy sector being on sustainability, it’s good to know that the City of Cape Town’s electricity HQ is very, very environmentally-friendly.
“In terms of eco-friendly design, this building is one of the continent’s flagships and, as such, can serve as a blueprint for municipal buildings in Africa,” says City of Cape Town’s mayoral committee member for utility services, Ernest Sonnenberg, about the Green Star-rated Electricity Services headquarters in Bellville.
“You cannot think about the provision of utility services without discussing how to use resources in an efficient way. This is especially challenging in Africa due in no small part to the legacy of coal-reliant development.”
“Furthermore, due to the economic contexts of many of our neighbours where large sections of the population have no access to electricity at all, the use of green technology often takes a back seat to other development goals. We hope this facility shows that green interventions aren’t necessarily at the cost of humanitarian goals,” he says.
The building has some essential eco-friendly features including an air conditioning system that achieves a 150% improvement on the requirements set out in the South African national standards for energy efficiency, without compromising the comfort levels of staff. Smart lighting controls help to maximize energy usage, while motion sensors and timers ensure that lights aren’t left on unnecessarily, a design which maximises natural light, a system of 400 solar panels to power the building.
The luxury high rise also features water-wise plants in the recreational areas and grey water reuse capabilities.
In addition to these features, all materials used to construct the building were chosen to minimise pollution.
Source: Footprint to Africa