Sustainability: A new dimension to property management
- Kelly Austria () - September 7, 2009 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - There is a constant need to upgrade and improve on the operational efficiencies of malls and commercial complexes, business hubs and even residential properties. 

With Ayala Property Management Corp. (APMC), the largest property manager in the country, a new requirement has been added—the integration of innovative systems favoring the sustainable use of resources as well as directly measuring its impact and effectiveness. This is according to Bobby Menpin, chief operating officer of APMC.

APMC duties are extensive—from power maintenance and alternative supply and communications systems to lobby reception and elevator operations; from management of garbage disposal practices and janitorial services to upkeep of gardens, décor, and water features — and the list doesn’t stop there.

With this comprehensive scope, APMC still manages to look for ways to apply modern technologies and systems aiming to preserve the environment while opting for superior safety and health-promoting practices.

As an example, to conserve water, Menpin cites APMC’s recent introduction of waterless urinals at Glorietta 4. The amount of water saved at this mall because of this is about 150,000 liters per urinal every year. With 16 units, savings would be a staggering 2.4 million liters a year.

Another example is the conditioning of soil for landscapes in main roads such as Ayala Ave. and Bonifacio Global City. This is now being done using compostable garden wastes Menpin says, the process represents a good sustainability principle of the “closed loop system” where wastes are diverted from being disposed in landfills to either be reused or recycled. He adds, “We are also starting to firm up our research on use of residual wastes as components in brick-making. These bricks can be used as paving blocks in the common areas such as walkways.

Diligence in this direction to install concrete measures for cost-savings and increased efficiencies through sustainability efforts, has yielded affirmations for APMC with three international quality management certificates .A re-certification was provided last year for ISO 9001:2000 on Quality Management, ISO 4001:2004 on Environmental Management and OHSAS 18001:2007 on Occupational Health and Safety.

The first set of ISO certificates were awrded three years ago, making APMC the first Philippine property management company to acquire all three certificates all together. Re-certification is provided every three years.

For many years, APMC has also garnered the ASEAN Energy Savings Award. The savings from streamlined systems and application of cost-saving technologies in the buildings that were cited in the award has amounted to some P180 million since 2002.

For carrying out sustainability and environment-friendly innovations in the past 10 years, APMC has also become a perennial recipient of best practices citations from local and international groups. Its efforts certainly go beyond the level of using green products such as energy-efficient light bulbs in malls, better air filters for air conditioning systems in buildings, or effective collection of recyclable materials in subdivisions and condominiums. It even improves its ways of gauging the overall effectiveness and impact of its various sustainability schemes. “We develop more initiatives to obtain better measurements of our success. APMC’s goal is to exceed its sustainability targets by five percent every year,” shares Menpin.

The provision of systems for efficient use of energy and water, upkeep of air quality and upgrade of solid waste management are the main concerns of APMC’s Sustainability Task Force.

The task force works in alignment with the Ayala Land Sustainability Council, which has representatives also from Makati Development Corporation (MDC) and Innovation and Design Group (IDG) to chart a roadmap towards effectively responding to even bigger issues on global climate change and emergence of green consumerism. This sustainability thrust is undertaken without compromising on the comfort, safety and convenience of clients and customers.

With the desire to extend impact to bigger communities, APMC also shares its sustainability crusade as chair of the Advocacy Committee of the Makati Environment Foundation, by conducting information drives on solid waste management among non-APMC managed buildings at the Makati Central Business District and Ayala Center.

With APMC’s zealous work, greater operating efficiencies with predominant use of sustainable and environment-friendly ways can hopefully become the norm rather than the enhancement. When this happens, the Sustainability Task Force of APMC can heartily announce to a better environment: we did good.

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