TAG Videos | Drip Irrigation in the City

Video Source | The ꓥrchitecture Gazette

Music Source | “My Best Melody” catatau5 | Link

References / Additional Reading |

1) Alliance for Water Efficiency | https://bit.ly/2T2nynY

2) CINAGRO™ Products | https://amzn.to/2SbZdfo

E@BS 3/5: Commercial – CapitaGreen

This is Segment 3 of our Chain of posts focused on ‘Energy @ the Building Scale’.
[Extension of Part 4/5: The Red System (Energy), Singapore – Published: 28th May 2018]

CapitaGreen

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CapitaGreen in the Central Business District of Singapore [Image via GreenA Consultants, Singapore]
CapitaGreen is a 82,000 sq.m. GreenMark Platinum building. It is a 43-floor skyscraper in the Central Business District of Singapore designed by Architect – Toyo Ito (2). It is at less than 10-minutes walk, South-East from Park Royal, Pickering – our previous project under study. The Skyscraper has multiple sustainable features as elaborated below; which lead to energy savings of around 4.5 GWh /year (1).

Continue reading “E@BS 3/5: Commercial – CapitaGreen”

Q & A – 1

We interrupt the ongoing Chain of posts on E@BS to introduce our ‘Q & A’ column.

Our segment on Cleantech One [published: June 18, 2018] left us with 2 questions. We address one of them today –

Q) Integration with Green has positive effects on micro-climate and energy loads. However, landscaping has associated water and maintenance costs. There are also issues of insects that may not always be welcome in an urban/ strictly controlled setting like that of laboratories. What do you think about this?

A) Water and Maintenance Costs

Water use can be optimized and maintenance can be reduced by adopting certain simple measures. Some of the following have been adopted by our case-studies, specially Park Royal Hotel [published June 25th, 2018]. These measures also help buildings gain points for LEED certification categories – Water Efficiency, Sustainable Sites.

Reduction of Need (Water and Maintenance)

  • Selection of Plant Species – Native plants that are local to the site are adapted best to existing conditions. They are thus hardy and require little to no maintenance. Many species can also survive, without any external irrigation.
  • Rainwater Harvesting – Storage, treatment an recycling of rainwater for landscape irrigation helps reduce the requirement for Potable water use. In Park Royal, rainwater from upper floors, irrigates plants on lower floors by gravity.

Supplemental measures

  • Non – Potable water – If additional water is needed, then non-potable water recycled from site or outside, can be utilized. For example in Park Royal Hotel, recycled wastewater called NEWater is used for additional irrigation needs.
  • Drip Irrigation – If supplemental irrigation is required, then drip irrigation is an extremely efficient option. Compared to overhead spray irrigation (efficiency 50-70 per cent), drip irrigation can provide water use efficiencies of greater than 90 per cent. There are multiple other benefits of this type of irrigation which make it an indisputable choice. Various small villages, farmers and projects in India are benefiting from this technology. Some benefits include –
    • Efficiency – There is reduction of  evaporative losses and as water is delivered through pipes, to the plants as they need it.
    • Yield – Farmers in the states of Andhra Pradesh (Anantapur district, Chilli Crop) and Tamil Nadu (Tuberose flowers) in India for example, have seen crop yields double by adopting drip irrigation. This is possible since water along with fertilisers or required chemicals can be delivered to the plants ina precise manner, thus improving plant health.
    • Weeds – Weeds are reduced since the area between plants is not irrigated.
    • Runoff – Runoff , Erosion and related Pollution is prevented.
  • Sensors – Landscape areas could have rain sensors, that signal to turn off irrigation, when a minimum level of rainfall is achieved (d).

 

B) Insects

Insects or pests can be attracted to areas of vegetation and water. While all insects are not harmful, and many are extremely helpful and necessary for the ecosystem; they may not always be welcome in an urban/ strictly controlled setting like that of a laboratory. Let’s look at some ways to deal with this issue –

Pests around water features

Pests specially mosquitoes can be a dangerous problem around water features. Some steps that could be taken to guard against this are-

  • Design water features deeper than 2 feet, since larvae prefer shallow water bodies.
  • Use fountains or waterfalls, which increase circulation of water and reduce stagnant water.
  • Natural predators like dragonflies and back-swimmers help get rid of mosquito larvae. Care should be taken to avoid broad spectrum insecticides, which could kill these helpful creatures.
  • Remove organic debris, which is food for larvae – Pond Skimmers are useful contraptions for larger water bodies. For smaller water features, use pond skimmer nets. Pond spikes are good for preventing algal blooms.

Pest repellent Plant species

Another simple way is to choose plant species that naturally repel certain pests. This helps avoid the use of harmful insecticides and pesticides, that have other dire consequences. Some low maintenance species to choose from are –

  • Lavender – This plant has a lovely fragrance for humans. However, it repels mosquitoes, insects and smaller animals like rabbits. It is a tough drought-resistant plant and does well in warmer climates.
  • Citronella Grass – It has a lemony scent and is a common ingredient for mosquito repellents. It is a low maintainence plant and only requires a sunny spot in the ground in warm climates.
  • Marigolds – Their smell deters not only mosquitoes, but also aphids,  whiteflies, squash bugs,   thrips, tomato hornworms, mexican bean beetles. They flower annually and are easily grown in pots.

 


 

References/ Additional Reading:

E@BS 2/5: Commercial – Park Royal Hotel

This is Segment 2 of our Chain of posts focused on ‘Energy @ the Building Scale’.
[Extension of Part 4/5: The Red System (Energy), Singapore – Published: 28th May 2018]

Park Royal hotel

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Park Royal Hotel, Pickering, Singapore [Image via Nylon Singapore]
Park Royal at Pickering is a 7500 sq.m. Hotel in the thick of Singapore’s Central Business District, facing a now famous Hong Lim Park. The hotel has various sustainable features (elaborated below), that lead to approximately 30 per cent (f) energy savings in operation (using a conventional building of similar scale and functions as base case). Due to these features, it has received the GreenMark Platinum rating certification from Singapore’s Building Construction Authority.

Continue reading “E@BS 2/5: Commercial – Park Royal Hotel”

E@BS 1/5: Industrial – Cleantech One

This is Segment 1 of our Chain of posts focused on ‘Energy @ the Building Scale’.
[Extension of Part 4/5: The Red System (Energy), Singapore – Published: 28th May 2018]

Cleantech One

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Cleantech One at Cleantech Park; Source: b

Cleantech One is a 37,500 sq.m. BCA GreenMark Platinum certified Industrial building. It is a Jurong Town Corporation project that is part of the larger Cleantech Park, which is a 50 hectare site for clean technology activities such as R&D, test-bedding, prototyping. Cleantech One employs state-of-the-art Active technology features, but also integrates Passive design catering to its Climatic context (Singapore). Continue reading “E@BS 1/5: Industrial – Cleantech One”

E@BS Segment 1/7: Industrial – Cleantech One

This is Segment 1 of our Chain of posts focused on ‘Energy @ the Building Scale’.
[Extension of Part 4/5: The Red System (Energy), Singapore – Published: 28th May 2018]

Cleantech One

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Cleantech One at Cleantech Park; Source: b

Cleantech One is a 37,500 sq.m. BCA GreenMark Platinum certified Industrial building. It is a Jurong Town Corporation project that is part of the larger Cleantech Park, which is a 50 hectare site for clean technology activities such as R&D, test-bedding, prototyping. Cleantech One employs state-of-the-art Active technology features, but also integrates Passive design catering to its Climatic context (Singapore).

Singapore has a tropical rainforest climate, with temperatures rarely straying from 29-30 degrees Celsius. Humidity stays high throughout the year and there is regular and heavy precipitation. The effect of temperature can be reduced by strategic shading measures. Cleantech One uses proper orientation, green walls, planters, sky trellis. Humidity is addressed by increasing air movement to provide potential relief to occupants as seen below. These measures reduce dependence on mechanical cooling and thus help decrease Energy costs.

Continue reading “E@BS Segment 1/7: Industrial – Cleantech One”

Capital Hostage for Water

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Source

I sit in my living room looking at the gallons of water pouring down my window, courtesy the Great Indian Monsoons. I can’t help but feel sad seeing such a colossal waste of a precious resource – fresh water. This emotion is heightened by two reasons.

Continue reading “Capital Hostage for Water”

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