Green Building Code: Culling the Practical

Primavera Residences_edited

With climate change affecting even the personal lives of people – God knows how many individuals have lost sleep this summer because of the intense heat, and have become cranky raccoons afterwards – it is definitely an appreciated move should the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) push through with the plan for a Green Building Code by 2015.

According to reports, the code will supposedly require new buildings to have eco-friendly features such as energy efficiency and water and waste management. Definitely, this will mean no more shoebox buildings consuming a lot of electricity (for both cooling and lighting). Hello al fresco dining and tree-lined mall walks.

Naturally, real estate developments will have to follow suit. In the near future, green buildings will become the norm and developers will have to come up with designs that adapt to the environment. In Cagayan de Oro, there is already a developer that has trumped the others – Italpinas. With its current designs already using nature’s building structures and reducing the impact on the environment, it has already pioneered green building in Mindanao.

Admittedly, what it has now with its first project called Primavera Residences, is a far cry from what you would imagine of an Italian-inspired building.

Primavera Residences is a no-nonsense building. Still elegantly designed, it follows more the dictates of nature than the whims of humans. Instead of balustrade-circled verandas, what the building has are cantilevers seemingly protruding from a main body. But unlike the fancy veranda which can be romantic but quite non-functional at certain times of the day (when the sun is beating mighty hot at 12 noon for example), these efficient ledges help create shadows and shield the rooms from direct sunlight. This passive cooling technique results in minimized use of air-conditioners, making the building energy-efficient.

Definitely in the future, fancy building traditions would be snubbed by a more pragmatic populace. Real estate investing in Cagayan de Oro, in particular will be worth more when a building is designed to be environment-friendly. Otherwise, how can we maintain the illusions of sipping tea in a pretty garden when the sun is burning our heads bare?



Green Properties: The Goldmine of the Future

Primavera facade

When the ice started to melt in Antarctica, resistance to the idea of a ‘new norm’ in the climate finally started to wane. It is hopeless to refuse to believe that there is something wrong when centuries-old ice is finally starting to disappear. While scientists say this process is irreversible, how we deal with this reality is up to us.

First, now that the environment has slapped us back at the face after man has continuously abused it, we have to see how best to realign our lifestyles to something more in harmony with nature. We are seeking, therefore, for an eco-friendly design in our structures. It does not mean we tie some sticks together and camp-out under the stars au naturel. Reality check, we are rabid consumers of resources. We cannot change this in a matter of days. But there’s hope. For now.

Going green can simply be a matter of choosing to live in an energy-efficient building. A fine example of an energy-efficient building would be Primavera Residences in Cagayan de Oro. Its design allows residents to save on energy through features that cool the units, lessening the need for air conditioning. Soon it will also have a layer of solar panels on top of the building’s roof to provide additional protection from the heat of the sun and at the same time generating electricity for the building’s needs.

In the long run, this type of building allows residents to save on energy costs. Especially with the power rates climbing in a steeper incline lately, green buildings are obviously smart decisions. Although the initial investment – because to buy a green unit is indeed a form of investment – may look high, eventual savings would actually defray the capital.

In addition to the benefits unit owners would get, green buildings will help with the situation of the locality in terms of energy efficiency. Since it is partly – or wholly – sustainable, it can alleviate power load stress.

The further beauty of buildings like this is that obviously, with the trend of development anxious to ‘go green’, eventually this would appreciate in value. Already, a preference for less environmentally harmful products is growing. Green buildings may still be relatively new right now but they are no longer luxuries. They have become a necessity.

Want to own a green property? Check out Primavera Residences’ condominium for sale in Cagayan de Oro.


DPWH gets DOJ nod to adopt green building regulation

Coral City in Sto Tomas Batangas


MANILA, Philippines – Following the destruction caused by typhoon Yolanda, the Department of Justice (DOJ) allowed the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to push through with its plan of adopting a green building regulation in the National Building Code of the Philippines (NBCP).

In a nine-page legal opinion made public Wednesday, Justice Secretary Leila De Lima said the DPWH has the authority to issue implementing rules and regulations for effective implementation of the NBCP.

With such power, De Lima said the authority includes the power to amend or revise under the doctrine of necessary implications.

Section 203 of both the NBCP and its IRR explicitly authorizes changes and/or amendments to existing referral codes.

“Indeed, the provisions of the referral codes should be allowed to evolve to respond to the needs of the changing times,” De Lima said in her legal opinion.

“Verily, amending all the pertinent provisions of existing referral codes to include the green building regulation may be considered as one of the needed changes envisioned at the time of the adoption of the law,” she said.

Read the story here.


– Tetch Tores-Tupas

Featured on Inquirer, 27 November 2013

Italpinas to discuss green building, sustainable development at CTI-PFAN Forum 2013

cti pfan

ITALPINAS Euro Asian Design and Eco-Development Corporation (ITPI), a company involved in real estate investment development, architectural and design eco services, will discuss sustainable and green building at the upcoming CTI-PFAN Philippines Clean Energy Financing Forum 2013.

The forum, organized by the  Climate Technology Initiative’s Private Financing Advisory Network, will be held on November 21 at the Isabela Ballroom of the Makati Shangri-la.

Fast becoming a leader in sustainable development and green building technologies, ITPI will also discuss its ongoing green developments, including Primavera Residences, a 10-storey condominium in Cagayan de Oro City.

Primavera incorporates several sustainable features, including a portion of its energy needs sourced from solar panels found on its roof, as well as a geo-cooling system and a shadow-cooling system, among others.

Italian architect Romolo V. Nati, ITPI’s Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer will speak about these features during session four of the forum, which focuses on sustainable business models.

Other sessions will tackle:

  • Increasing the competitiveness of the sugar milling sector by adopting energy efficiency and renewable energy
  • Improving the livestock sector by promoting biogas to meet national wastewater regulations, lower the cost of meat production by using electricity generated from livestock waste and develop additional revenue streams like organic fertilizer production

During the forum, the Electric Vehicle Expansion Enterprises, Inc. (EVEEI) will also present its electric jeepney operations as one sustainable business model, while Strategen Consulting LLC will speak about its waste management solution for the fruit processing sector as another sustainable business model.

Supported by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), CTI-PFAN is a global program dedicated to helping clean energy project developers find sources of financing.

Thus, one forum session will also involve how start-ups can tap sources of clean energy financing — including Ayala Foundation and USAID’s Development Credit Authority — as well as complementary financing schemes appropriate for each stage of a company’s maturity.

The Forum will provide a networking space for one-on-one meeting sessions with clean energy project developers, financing institutions, investors, and other USAID programs.

For more details, contact:

Rex Darell B. Vergel
Senior Technical Analyst
CleanEnergy Solutions International
(formerly IRG Philippines)
Unit 2303 Medical Plaza Ortigas
25 San Miguel Ave., Ortigas Center
Pasig City, 1600 Philippines

Phone/Fax: +63 2 910 3008
Mobile: +63 939 353 7695