MANILA, Philippines - ArthaLand and the Philippine Green Building Council (PhilGBC) inked a memorandum of mutual cooperation to register Arya Residences as the pilot project to the BERDE residential rating system.
The agreement makes the prime property the first and only top-end residential condominium to be registered under the program. Arya Residences becomes the benchmark for green vertical residential buildings in the Philippines.
BERDE (Building for Ecologically Responsive Design Excellence) is a green building system developed by PhilGBC under the country’s unique environmental conditions.
BERDE aims to promote green building and construction practices such as improving indoor air quality, enhancing efficiency in water usage, promoting energy efficiency and conservation, establishing solid waste management practices, and advancing eco-friendly site development. The program also espouses further utilization of green materials in all phases of the building construction.
Its proponent, PhilGBC, is a non-stock, non-profit organization that operates all over the Philippines with the aim of promoting and sharing knowledge on green building practices. Its members include experts in the fields of architecture, engineering, and construction. The council also includes representatives from various developers and industry stakeholders.
PhilGBC intends to promote the transformation of design and construction management methods of the building industry into practices that are environmentally and socially responsible towards total improvement of its inhabitants’ quality of life.
To date, there are five commercial developments that are registered under the BERDE program. The council further expects several developments from the government and the private sectors to be registered in the program in partnership with the Department of Energy within the year.
“Greening the real estate sector is a very important step for all the stakeholders in the industry,” shares Angie de Villa-Lacson, president and CEO of ArthaLand. “Standardizing the greening measures is a major step to encourage developers to take the sustainability thrust seriously,” Lacson stresses.
PhilGBC chairman and executive director Christopher dela Cruz notes that “the Philippine property and construction industry presently enjoys tremendous growth, outperforming several sectors of the economy. This rapid development however may cause some negative impact to the environment.”
“To reverse the unfavorable effects, sustainable practices in the industry may provide the solution to this rather bleak scenario. The challenge lies in convincing the decision makers that constructing green buildings is a wise investment,” he adds.
“The greening of developments is a tricky matter. We at ArthaLand, together with PhilGBC, would like to espouse the use of calibrated and strictly monitored sustainability procedures. Greening should go beyond the landscape greens and waste management. To fully reap the benefit of sustainability, developers should be able to measure the inputs and the outputs of the eco-friendly features that we build into our buildings,” adds Lacson.
The partnership between ArthaLand and PhilGBC marks another landmark for the country’s real estate industry. ArthaLand’s flagship project, Arya Residences, is now a contender for dual green building certification.
Arya Residences is a two-tower luxury development rising along McKinley Parkway in Bonifacio Global City. It is also the first and only top-end residential high rise in the Philippines that is registered under the US Green Building Council’s LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) program with a certification goal of Gold.
“The dual certification that we are vying for reflects our seriousness in our goal to achieve the optimal results of going green,” says Lacson. “We are on target to achieve the world standard in green buildings. Moreover, we are also sensitive to the fact that our local geography and climate make-up influence the way we design and build our project.”
“As an entrepreneurial developer, we want to take leadership and influence our peers in the industry to step up the effort in ensuring a green and future proof planet for our children and our children’s children. As a fast growing industry, it is our responsibility to work together on this,” she concludes.