Tuesday 28 February 2012

Green Mark hits 1,000th landmark

Pasir Ris sports centre is latest to be certified for eco-friendly features
By Lin Zhaowei, The Straits Times, 27 Feb 2012

THE sun louvres on the facade of the recently opened Pasir Ris Sports and Recreation Centre look brand-new, but they were actually made from timber benches from the old National Stadium.

The use of the recycled materials and other environmentally friendly features has won the complex the Building and Construction Authority's (BCA) green certification, known as the Green Mark.

The sports complex is also the 1,000th building here to attain the Green Mark, a milestone for the scheme that started with just 17 buildings in 2005.

Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, who went on a morning walk with 500 residents yesterday to mark the occasion, described the recycling of the National Stadium benches as a 'nice touch'.

The old stadium held many fond memories for him, said Mr Teo, who is an MP for Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC. He cited the National Day Parades, football matches and South-east Asian Games events that used to be held there.

The Green Mark scheme, he said, is an integral part of national efforts to reduce emissions and contribute to climate change mitigation efforts.

Now, 13 per cent of the buildings here have some form of Green Mark certification. The BCA aims to have 80 per cent of all buildings here certified by 2030.

The sports and recreation centre, officially opened last November, is the Singapore Sports Council's (SSC) first Green Mark-certified sports complex. Costing around $40 million to build, it houses an indoor sports hall, swimming pools, futsal and tennis courts and a gym. It also has food and sporting equipment outlets.

The building comes with several environmentally friendly features.

It has 2,400 sq m of rooftop solar panels installed, which generate enough energy to power 43 four-room Housing Board flats. The panels supply up to 12 per cent of the total energy used by the centre and will save the SSC about $57,000 in electricity bills a year.

The complex has energy-efficient LED lighting and green walls installed, and is designed such that wind is funnelled into the corridors for natural ventilation.

The louvres made from the benches shade the corridors from the sun, which further reduces the build-up of heat.

SSC chief of sports facilities Kenneth Hui said the council will gradually introduce green features to its 20 other sports complexes, instead of closing them temporarily for major upgrades. 'We do not want to inconvenience our users. Whatever we can do, we will do in bits and pieces as part of our normal upgrading.'

BCA chief executive John Keung said he expects more owners of existing buildings to introduce green features, especially with rising energy costs.

He highlighted the $100 million Green Mark Incentive Scheme for Existing Buildings as a source of funding to assist building owners in undertaking such projects.

He said the BCA will soon introduce a new Green Mark scheme for data centres. It is developed in partnership with the Infocomm Development Authority.

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