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20130907-132017.jpgIt’s always great to learn more about the profession and the new technologies that go into the latest completed architectural works in the country. Last September I joined a group of UP College of Architecture students in a walkthru of the Zuellig building in Makati, to learn about the office and the various things that had made it a green building. Conducting the talk and walkthru was Arch. William V. Coscolluela who was assisted by Arch Gil Coscolluela and Mrs Mara Coscolluela-Quintal his children, with the help of the Zuellig building administrators and staff with participation from Meinhardt, the engineering consultants. Arch Coscolluela with SOM of New York are the designers of the building.

It was learned that what made the building green was compliance to the criteria and standards set by the US Green Building Council (USGBC). This entailed aspects in design, construction and operation and involved the owners, architects, engineers, contractors, suppliers, administrators and users, green building is not just a way of design and construction but a reorganized way of doing things that would help our environment and human well being.

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The building was sited and developed from the requirements of the client, and various tools were used to alleviate the heat from the sun, one particular item of interest was the distinct curtain wall double glass with ceramic frits that were designed from a study of the heat and light from the sun. There were various standard designs employed the eventual pattern on the facade that actually provides differing levels of protection along each side of the building.

We were also told that water is continuously harvested and recycled in the building’s operation making their water requirements from the water mains less than what would have been conventionally been required for an office building of that size.

Airconditioning is also designed to consume less power, and the systems allow for particular spaces to be airconditioned without having to turn on the whole system for a floor translating to savings.
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The elevators were particularly quick and quiet despite transporting the group 30 storeys to the roof garden.

We were told that many of the office users and locators were happy to move in despite the price premium because of the savings in energy and water cost. One of the features available are the bicycle parking with shower and changing rooms for office occupants on the ground floor.

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In conclusion the Zuellig building is the first of many green buildings to come, with the advent of local standards for green building and the interest of the professionals and students its a wave of the future that will surely be a fixture in how we design, build and occupy or structures and environment.

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The talk was by request from the College of Architecture of UP Diliman, all official images here are owned by the Zuellig group, WV Coscolluela and Associates and SOM.

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