Award-winning green building reaches practical completion
An award-winning R152 million Department of Transport and Public Works (DTPW) project to build a regional office at Karl Bremer Hospital in Bellville reached practical completion today (12 July 2017). The Green Building Council of South Africa (GCBSA) awarded the project a 5-Star Green Star rating for design, and the project was the first recipient of the GCBSA Socio-Economic Category Pilot Award. The building will provide accommodation for 320 Western Cape Department of Health staff members.
The Socio-Economic Category Pilot Award is given to a project that made a significant contribution to employment creation, economic opportunity, skills development and training, community benefit, empowerment, as well as health and safety. The Green Star rating for design measures the extent to which a building design performs well in terms of management, indoor environmental quality, energy, transport, water, materials, land use and ecology, emissions, and innovation. A five-star rating represents “South African excellence”.
The facility will use less water, generate less waste, and provide healthier working conditions for occupants than other buildings of a similar size. Passive solar design minimises the need for heating and cooling. Activity spaces are open and aimed at encouraging communication between offices and promoting a sense of community. Bicycle-friendly facilities are provided for staff and visitors to encourage commuters to use non-motorised transport. The innovative and creative design will help create a comfortable and productive work environment that integrates functional offices with amenities and access to social activities.
From the time the project started in January 2015, R70 million has been spent on procuring services from local contractors. In addition, short-term employment and skills training opportunities were created for 110 people during the construction phase.
The provision of high-quality facilities for provincial departments is an important step to supporting excellent service delivery. Where possible, the Western Cape Government prefers to house its staff in facilities that it owns rather than in leased facilities.