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Freeman Cebu Business

Developers now investing on future-proofing projects

Ehda M. Dagooc - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines — Along with the robust expansion move of property developments in the Philippines after a two-year pandemic-induced slowdown, developers are now spending more on sustainable buildings.

United Architects Association of the Philippines (UAP) ASEAN special committee member, Daryl Balmoria-Garcia noted that sizeable investments are now poured on making buildings sustainable, environment friendly, and health-friendly as well.

Garcia, who operates a growing architecture firm in Cebu— Dream Architects said that even existing buildings are being improved or renovated to align with design perspective of certified green building standards.

In an interview with Garcia, she said that while property developers—big or small and across segments are restarting the expansion plans, bulk of money is also allocated to make sure that projects are disaster-proof, new normal friendly, or green building certified.

The awareness among developers of building sustainable projects has never been this high, she said. In fact, most are willing to spend extra just to make sure new projects are aligned with the international green building standards.

Garcia, who sits as a member of the UAP ASEAN Committee said, in Cebu and the rest of Visayas and Mindanao for instance, the typhoon Odette served as a “wake up” call for developers take a serious consideration in sustainability.

For high-rise residential projects, integrated developments, even the new commercial buildings, the inclusion of outdoor areas, or pocket of green spaces are deemed important.

According to Garcia, architects and constructors are commissioned to re-align design perspectives to sustainable standards, even if it meant additional expenditure foe developers.

Top essential features include;  outdoor living areas, a chapel, roof garden, gym or fitness areas.

For residential developments, home-office designs are also part of the trend.

Roughly, developers may spend an additional of P5-6 million to achieve a world standard sustainable building, Garcia estimated.

For horizontal developments, more attractive locations are those near the beach or mountains.

There are also Local Government Units (LGUs) like Mandaue City that went ahead of the curb and is giving incentives to green building certified developments through an ordinance, she said.

Garcia is one of the 122 Filipino out of over 50,000 registered Filipino architects to be chosen as part of the ASEAN registry.

She is also part of the ASEAN Agreement on Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) on Architectural Services.

ASEAN

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