10 Most Prominent Green Buildings in India
The building construction industry produces the second-largest amount of demolition waste and greenhouse gases (35-40%). The major consumption of energy in buildings is during construction and later due to lighting, water heating and air-conditioning systems. Sustainable architecture or green construction is the solution to minimize the negative impact on the environment.
A structure is classified as a ‘Green Building’ when –
• It uses eco-friendly resources
• It uses less energy, water and other resources
• It involves design and processes that eliminate/mitigate the negative impact on the environment, throughout the lifecycle of the building
• It provides a healthy environment for people living or working inside the structure as against a regular building
According to a study by the Indian Green Building Council, 8/10 people working in green offices and green structures, in general, reported good thermal, visual and acoustic comfort. The study was conducted across seven major cities in India, all of which are certified by the Green Building Rating System.
In this blog, we try to list out some of the inspiring green buildings in India.
- Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, Hyderabad
The Rajiv Gandhi International Airport is the first Asian airport to get the LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) NC Silver Rating, which is an international certification system for green buildings. Some of its prominent features include – material resource selection, functional design and construction process,
water and energy efficiency, lighting controls, efficient chillers and indoor environment quality.
- CII-Sohrabji Godrej Green Business Centre, Hyderabad
This business centre in Hyderabad has office buildings, research labs, conference rooms all of which are designed based on sustainable architecture. The centre has incorporated extensive energy simulation to minimize heat ingress while allowing natural daylight to penetrate abundantly. The structure encompasses several environment-friendly and energy and water-efficient features such as solar PV systems, high-performance light and vision glazing, an aesthetic roof garden that protects heat penetration, rainwater harvesting, perforated walls for natural lighting as well as ventilation. The courtyards act as lightwells for automatically managing the illumination levels and the double-glazed wall cladding reduce heat transfer. About 80% of the materials are sourced within 500 miles of the project site. A majority of the content used for construction comprises recycled materials and more than 50% of the waste is recycled within the building.
- Olympia Tech Park, Chennai
This tech park is one of the biggest and most sought-after IT destinations in Chennai that is built using sustainable architecture. In 2013, it was rated the largest LEED Gold green building in the world. On a quest for zero carbon footprint, the campus has employed natural lighting system, eco-friendly architectural materials, accounts for the lowest power consumption, energy-efficient sources for air conditioning, renewable energy sources like recycled water and an efficient ventilation system.
- Suzlon One Earth Campus, Pune
This wind energy company lives by the motto ‘powering a greener tomorrow’. The campus is exclusively built on non-toxic and eco-friendly materials. The structure has received LEED Platinum certification for energy efficiency and vernacular solutions. Drawing inspiration from the Indian historical monuments, the campus boasts of elements such as overhangs, pergolas, courtyards, louvers, water-efficient systems and natural light permeation. Operable fenestration in all areas supports natural ventilation. Aluminium louvers act as protective skin and allow daylight and cross ventilation. By employing LED lighting and solar heating systems, the campus saves a considerable amount of energy. A large water body in the central court helps improve the air quality and evaporative cooling. The external landscape is designed to circulate fresh air and provide a refreshing view of nature.
- Infosys Limited, Mysore
Awarded LEED India Platinum rating by Indian Green Building Council, the campus employs sustainable architecture including, sustainable site development, water and energy efficiency, material selection and indoor environment quality. 90% of the office uses natural light. The contrasting brightness within the building has also been reduced by using light colour surfaces and ceilings to ensure visual comfort. The building envelope along with insulated walls, roof and double-glazed windows have reduced the energy costs by 40%. 41% of the total project material is sourced regionally and 10% of the total construction material is recycled including aluminium, glass and steel.
- Infinity Benchmark, Kolkata
This is a 20-storeyed building certified as the world’s 7th platinum level by the US Green building council under their LEED rating programme. The prominent features include –
Energy and water-efficient design and equipment
Double glazed glass unit to enhance energy efficiency and reduce heat ingress
External walls made of brick wall block with thick polystyrene and ACP cladding for better insulation
Terrace garden to reduce heat island effect
Use of low organic volatile paints, adhesives, sealants and materials
Intelligent humidification controls
Construction material involving 20% recycled content and 20% locally-sourced content.
- Patni Knowledge Centre, Noida
The campus has two blocks, of which A block has been conferred as the second-largest Platinum rated LEED Certified Green Building by the IGBC and block B is GOLD rated LEED Certified Green Building. The building has incorporated active (mechanical/electrical) strategies and passive (architectural) strategies to effectively reduce energy consumption. The building’s façade overlooks the courtyard with water bodies, plants and sculptures (as visual nodes) which has features such as natural cooling elements and a natural light well. The building depth is optimized to capture daylight and enhance outdoor views. The shading system for exteriors is designed to cut the heat and experience glare-free light. Solar water heating, drip irrigation, water recycling and rainwater harvesting are some of the other features.
- The ITC Green Centre, Gurgaon
This expansive platinum-rated green building has adopted green design and practices and all systems are integrated to function as naturally as possible. The architecture involves a choice of fly-ash bricks, concrete, glass cladding, double glazing windows – to maximize the effect of natural light, to cut the heat, to keep the office cool from inside and decrease the load on the HVAC system. Over 40% of the construction materials are locally sourced and over 10% of the materials such as glass, ceramic tiles, steel and aluminium are recycled. The building has employed energy and water-efficient systems. The central atrium allows a column of glare-free natural light at the heart of the building. The building uses a CO2 monitoring system to improve the quality of air.
- CRISIL House, Mumbai
Conferred with LEED Platinum rating by IGBC, this is one of the top-rated commercial buildings in India. The campus has around 14 gardens including a terrace garden. Every floor has a breakout area that has greenery for visual comfort and to create a healthy environment. Through a mix of innovation and technologies, the building promotes energy efficiency. The building has been designed in a way where during the daytime, 70% of the interiors do not need artificial lighting. The complete building has used recycled, renewable and locally sourced materials.
- ITC Maurya Hotel, New Delhi
Taking inspiration from Mauryan architecture, the hotel is a combination of historic aura with contemporary architecture. The hotel uses 23% less energy than USGBC’s average for large size luxury hotels. To enhance performance efficiencies, the hotel has employed a solar thermal system, HVAC system, water and building management system. The building consciously promotes the cultivation of native plants to maintain ecological stability. Over 75% of the roof area is covered with paints that have a high solar reflective index, which adds to the cooling effect; the exterior hardscape is maintained without the use of chemicals. The building provides for enhanced thermal comfort of the occupants. More than 50% of the construction materials are recycled and locally sourced.
Sustainable architecture is all about optimizing power, water and local material requirements and prioritizing local ecology. The Energy and Resources Institute estimates that if all structures in the Indian urban areas joined the green movement, India could save more than 8,400 megawatts of power, which could light around 550,000 homes a year! The sooner the awareness, the better is the impact on the environment.