WWF-SA: 6 stars of sustainability

By Ilana Koegelenberg

WWF South Africa’s newly refurbished building in the suburban hub of Braamfontein is the first retrofitted building in the country to receive a 6-Star Green Star SA rating with full marks in the ‘Water’ category.

The modest four-storey World Wildlife Fund (WWF) building includes a roof garden and sits on a tight 248m2 corner site in the Johannesburg CBD. It stands as a physical representation of the organisation’s values and attitude towards environmental responsibility and conservation of natural resources.

DPS

This Johannesburg office sets a benchmark in sustainability and green building design. It showcases how innovative, practical, and sustainable solutions — combined with creative design flare and lower cost production practices — can be adapted to influence the environmental impacts of a retrofitted structure.

The project boasts several systems and strategies in its refurbishment, which resulted in an impressive environmentally innovative and intelligent structure achieving a top overall score of 76 points.

Consumptive use of non‐potable water through use as irrigation water is supplemented by a 10 000ℓ rainwater harvesting system.

Features include the reuse of 80% of the original building materials in the re-design as well as in natural ventilation, a closed water recycling system, light-sensitive blinds, various insulation solutions, and an indigenous rooftop garden with water-efficient plants that are watered by rainwater. In addition, the premises features state-of-the-art conferencing facilities, allowing the carbon footprint of the business to be reduced.

Construction started in 2012, with the building handed over to WWF at the end of January 2015 and the application for the Green Star rating submitted soon after.

SUSTAINABLE FEATURES

Sustainable building features of the WWF include the following:

  • On-site treatment of black water for reuse within the building to flush toilets, as well as landscape irrigation.
  • On-site stormwater attenuation as well as rainwater harvesting to supplement non-potable water supplies.
  • Water efficiency is achieved through low flow sanitaryware, as well as a drip irrigation system that reduces water consumption by more than 90%.
  • Low volatile organic compounds used in urinals, thus negating the two largest water demands.
  • Located within the heart of the CBD, building occupants have excellent proximity to local amenities as well as world-class public transport systems.
  • No on-site parking has been provided; building occupants are encouraged to use the public mass transport infrastructure and/or cycle to work. Secure bicycle storage and showers are provided on site to encourage alternative forms of transport to work.
  • The location within the CBD promotes the reuse of structures and reduces the need for urban sprawl.
  • Although ecological improvement within the built-up environment was hard to achieve, a rooftop garden and entertainment area provide a welcome relief for building occupants.
  • Sustainable material selection was carefully considered, together with the reuse of materials from the deconstruction phase of the project.

Inside the new WWF-SA building. There is a great focus on saving water throughout the building. Smart metering has been installed throughout the building and connected to the building monitoring system. The outside area of the refurbished WWF-SA. COVER.jpgPotable water consumption is further reduced through the on‐site treatment of effluent.

SYSTEM DESCRIPTION

All sanitaryware installed within the building has been chosen to reduce water wastage. These include:

  • Dual flush toilets (3.6ℓ/min average flush)
  • Waterless urinals (0ℓ/min)
  • Water-efficient shower (9ℓ/min)
  • Low flow taps (6ℓ/min)

Hot water is supplied to the kitchenettes on the first and second floors, the shower WC on the ground floor, and the main roof kitchen only. No hot water is provided within the male and female toilet blocks. This minimises hot water consumption, reducing the amount of energy needed to heat domestic water.

Hot water is pre‐heated within a rooftop solar system and stored within an insulated 600kPA geyser located within the plumbing riser.

Potable water consumption is further reduced through the on‐site treatment of effluent. Treated water is then reused within the building to flush toilets and irrigate the roof garden. Following the collection and storage of effluent in three inter‐connected septic tanks, the Lilliput plant then treats the water in a four-stage anaerobic process, improving water quality to a level suitable for discharge into a stormwater or river system.

Smart metering has been installed throughout the building and connected to the building monitoring system. Inside the new WWF-SA building. Potable water consumption is further reduced through the on‐site treatment of effluent. The outside area of the refurbished WWF-SA. There is a great focus on saving water throughout the building.
Consumptive use of non‐potable water through use as irrigation water is supplemented by a 10 000ℓ rainwater harvesting system. Rainwater is collected from both the upper and lower roofs channelled to the basement, filtered, and then reused by pumping back up to the rooftop holding tank.

The automated drip irrigation system delivers optimal quantities of water to the indigenous plants within the rooftop flower boxes. The system includes a rain sensor to ensure overwatering does not occur, as well as minimise water consumption during rainy periods.

Source: www.gbcsa.org.za 

ABOUT THE WWF

The WWF is one of the world’s largest and most respected independent conservation organisations, with almost six million supporters and a global network active in over 100 countries. WWF South Africa (WWF-SA) is a national office that is part of the WWF network. They are a local NGO that, for more than 40 years, has worked towards the aim of inspiring all South Africans to live in harmony with nature, for the benefit of our country and the well-being of all our people.

LIST OF PROFESSIONALS

List of


Click below to read the August 2017 issue of Plumbing Africa

PA Aug2017

Search

 PAClick Here Blue

 

 


PA PLUMBDRAIN logo 150 PLUMBING Online logo TP SA Plumbers Handbook Logo

Product of

IMD logo White

 

Interact Media Defined (IMD), is one of South Africa’s leading multi-media magazine publishers READ MORE

Our Products

building LOGO white

Water Online logo white 200

HVACR Online logo 200

mining LOGO whiteCLA Online logo white MM

Talk to us

JHB T : +27 (0) 11 579 4940
CPT T : 0861 727 663
E : admin@interactmedia.co.za

13A Riley Road, Bedfordview,
South Africa 2007

© Interact Media Defined