Combining Modern Technology with Traditional Methods – Green Architecture in India
Today the whole world is at the precipice of radical change. As the world fights the pandemic, the human population is opening its eyes to the magnitude of damage it has caused to the environment, the planet. To the very home that it inhabits. Things are shifting in all sectors of life, from way of living, waste reduction, banning single use plastics, going local and even green buildings. A substantial shift is being observed in the field of Architecture and Interior Design in Hyderabad. The best architects in Hyderabad and around the world are taking some steps backwards in their building designs, towards heritage and culture to unlearn and undo some of the damage.
In India, we don’t have to look far, for architectural designs and building designs, to learn how we can achieve Green Architecture by combining modern technology with the traditional methods. Our rich architectural heritage offers a plethora of learnings to emulate. Ancient civilisation has presented us with innumerable examples of building design with economical use of space, working with the elements of nature to ensure the building remains cool in summers and warm in winters, using courtyards and lattices for climate controls. Today, we are returning to those techniques, combining them with modern technology and making our Buildings Architecture in Hyderabad.
A Green Building or Green Architecture will use technology and designs that enable:
- Efficient use of energy – especially renewable energy
- Economical use of Water
- Use of Local and sustainable material
- Reduction in waste
- Improved air quality
There are various tools to measure the environmental performance of buildings and validity of green building design. Indian Green Building Council (IGBC) and GRIHA being the leading metrics. IGBC offers services like rating programmes, certifications and green building training programmes. The use of these tools can ensure that the building design is such that it uses energy and water optimally and generates minimum waste through its life cycle. Environment friendly changes can be incorporated not just in building design, but also the interior design by using LEDs, environment friendly material like rattan, wood, using locally produced material and recycling as much as possible.
In recent years, sustainability has increasingly become a common interest of numerous disciplines. The reason for this is growing awareness of the need of rapid sustainable development. There are some leading Architects in Hyderabad, India, whose designs are greatly influenced by our heritage, and incorporate nature and its elements to the fullest. Biome Environmental Solutions in Bengaluru, Kamath Design Studio, Delhi, Footprints E.A.R.T.H., and Ahmedabad are some of the stalwarts in Green Architecture in India. With a well-planned and large-scale movements supported by the government as well as the private sector India can make a concrete effort towards a concrete-less, green and efficient country.
Under the Smart Cities Mission and Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna, here are several green buildings that have come up and more are planned. Some buildings of note are the Suzlon One Earth, Pune, CII- Sohrabji Godrej Green Business Centre, Hyderabad and Infinity Benchmark, Kolkata. These buildings have received the valuable LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification which lays framework for healthy, energy efficient, environment positive buildings.
A research by GRIHA says efficient lighting reduces the lighting load by 55 % in a green building. Efficient envelope and efficient lighting reduces building cooling load by 17.5% in air-conditioned and by 74% in non-air-conditioned areas. A green building consumes 51% less energy in non-air-conditioned areas and 37% less in air-conditioned building. The pay-back period of a green building is 3 to 4 years. The total cost saved in a life span of 15 years is approximately 6 times the incremental initial construction cost.
The current situation of pandemic has also reinforced the need for sustainable architecture, for using materials which help the environment instead of harming it and constructing in harmony with the earth, nature and environment. More local materials, greater interaction with the natural elements and minimizing waste, Made in India, would be the norm not far from now. Our time on this earth is borrowed and we owe it to the earth to be respectful of all that we have received from it.
In our last blog we shared some rules for architects towards sustainable architecture. To read check out 9 Basic Rules For Sustainable Architecture.