Aspire Zone Foundation’s (AZF) Ladies Sports Hall has achieved green building certification under the Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS), it was announced on Tuesday.
The project received GSAS Operations certificate with Silver rating awarded by the Gulf Organisation for Research & Development (Gord) in a ceremony in the presence of senior leadership from Gord and AZF.
Putting AZF’s achievement in a broader context, Dr Yousef Alhorr, founding chairman of Gord, said: “Across the world, sports facilities and events result in significant amounts of greenhouse gases but the sports industry’ capacity to unify diverse cultures also highlights its potential to be a part of the solution. Adopting sustainability in sports facilities comes with positive environmental impact but also with a far-reaching societal influence. By demonstrating green building practices in operations phase, Aspire Zone Foundation’s Ladies Sports Hall is in fact working as an impetus for change. Through initiatives that include efficient waste management, the project is educating individuals, inspiring businesses, and transforming the world of sports.”
Mohammed Khalifa al-Suwaidi, CEO of Aspire Zone Foundation, said: “Sustainability for us is not just a goal we seek to achieve, but rather a corporate culture that we adopt in all our programmes and events and is reflected in all of our activities. We are pleased with this success, which is added to the achievements of the Aspire Zone Foundation.”
GSAS Operations scheme aims to reduce the environmental impact of buildings by adopting the best available practices. Using this scheme, both new and existing projects can not only reduce their carbon footprint but also improve the health and wellbeing of their occupants.
Located next to the Ladies Club, Ladies Sports Hall is designed to provide indoor facilities for court sport such as basketball, handball and volleyball. Covering a total area of about 10,000sqm, the main hall can also accommodate entertainment events. As part of the GSAS Operations evaluation process that comprised audits, site assessments, walkthroughs and measurements, Aspire’s Ladies Sports Hall was assessed for its environmental performance in categories related to energy consumption, water use, quality of indoor environment, waste management and facility management. The assessment included thermal imaging analysis of the building envelope, energy and water labelling, indoor environmental quality analysis, and techno-commercial analysis of its energy management opportunities.
Committed to their efforts to ensure sustainable operations, AZF integrated its strategy for sustainable waste management within Ladies Sports Hall project. With mechanisms in place to manage hazardous and nonhazardous waste streams, the project is supporting Aspire Foundation’s efforts to divert waste from landfills.
To assess the indoor air quality, GSAS Trust conducted site audits to measure the levels of eight key pollutants, namely carbon monoxide (CO), carbon dioxide (CO2), formaldehyde, nitrogen dioxide (NO2), sulfur dioxide (SO2), particulate matters (PM2.5) and ozone (O3). Within the Ladies Sports Hall, most of these pollutants were found to be well below the limits indicated by World Health Organization guidelines, thereby representing clean air quality inside the hall.
Based on the audit findings, GORD has provided AZF with a list of recommended energy and water management opportunities (EMOs) to encourage further improvement in sustainable facility management as well as energy and water efficiency, in line with industrially-accepted engineering standards.