dhk Architects’ Nedbank Ridgeside office building in Umhlanga Rocks, Kwa-Zulu Natal, was recently awarded a four star “As built” rating under the Green Building Council of South Africa’s (GBCSA) Green Star rating system for offices. The rating system recognises achievements in sustainable architecture. This acknowledgement makes Ridgeside one of fewer than 20 buildings in South Africa to achieve certification and one of only a handful to achieve both “Design” and “As Built” rating status.
The four star rating recognises “best practice” in terms of green design. According to the GBCSA, the “Design” rating is a certification of the project’s sustainable design, prior to construction. Once the building is constructed, an “As built” certification can be applied for. The development previously scored a four star rating in the “Design” category and has now added the “As Built” rating to its accolades.
“We are proud that Ridgeside has been awarded this rating for the “As Built” category,” says Derick Henstra, Executive Chairman of the dhk Group. “The design was sensitive to both the environmental and aesthetic requirements of the build. We believe that we have successfully balanced the two imperatives; this rating is evidence of this.”
The office building is positioned on a landscaped podium, along a central avenue. Short term visitors’ parking is provided at podium level. The building allows for a generous and high quality ‘pedestrian priority’ public realm. Alternative modes of transportation for commuting to work have been provided. Dedicated preferential parking bays have been allocated to fuel efficient vehicles and the use of bicycles by occupants and visitors are encouraged by providing tenant and visitor bicycle storage as well as cyclist showers, changing facilities and secure lockers.
David Talbot, an Associate at dhk Architects and a GBCSA Accredited Green Star Professional, says “this is great example of dhk’s commitment to sustainable architecture and green design.”