LEED Earth Project Pioneers: World Bank's Delta Center Drives Kenya's Green Building Movement
The World Bank Group–Delta Center is the first LEED Certified building in Kenya.
USGBC’s mission is to bring the environmental and human health benefits of green buildings to all, and it is committed to accelerating the adoption of LEED® in new and existing markets.
LEED Earth offers certification at no cost to the first Platinum project in any country to certify using the newest version of LEED v4. It also offers free certification to the first project to be LEED-certified in one of the more than 100 countries where LEED has yet to take root.
The LEED Earth Project Pioneers series spotlights those who have set a new standard of green building leadership in their countries, sharing both the successes achieved and challenges navigated.
World Bank Group–Delta Center
Nairobi’s World Bank Group–Delta Center office interior was designed to generate greater awareness of green building concepts to both visitors and occupants of Kenya’s first LEED-certified building. The 218,175-square-foot office space achieved LEED Gold in May 2015 and scored in the top 25 percent of projects in its rating system version (LEED for Interior Design and Construction: Commercial Interiors v2009).
“As the building is large and used by many staff from the World Bank Group, we wanted to ensure that it would provide Class A office space, meeting the latest standards in energy efficiency; provide a high level of comfort to all its users; ensure usage of regionally sourced low maintenance materials; and reflect the World Bank Group’s own ambition of leading by example,” said Paul Witteman, manager of the international real estate development group at the World Bank and project manager for the World Bank Group Delta Center.
Witteman added that becoming certified LEED Gold allows the World Bank Group to operate and maintain a cost-efficient building. The project team installed a building management system to monitor and manage key equipment and spaces, and also ensured that the users would have sufficient self-control over the level of comfort in their offices.
One of the biggest challenges facing the project team was the space itself. The World Bank had acquired a building under construction, and there were certain limitations on what could be changed as far as the core and shell structure was concerned. For example, the glazing that was installed had insufficient thermal performance and would have allowed a lot of heat into the building—thereby increasing the burden on air-conditioning systems and driving up energy use. The team took care in selecting a window film that would reduce radiation, improve safety and ensure minimal energy use. They then supplemented those efforts with energy-efficient cooling and lighting systems to further cut consumption and promote indoor environmental quality.
Overall, the building achieved a 40 percent reduction in indoor potable water use and was awarded exemplary credits for using water-efficient fixtures. In addition to the high-performance window film, other energy-efficiency strategies contributed to HVAC energy savings of nearly 23 percent over conventional building systems. Moreover, more than 90 percent of the building’s equipment and appliances are Energy Star-qualified. The project has also used low-emitting adhesives, sealants, paints and coatings to enhance the indoor environment, in addition to selecting several interior materials with recycled content and rapidly renewable content.
The installation of a building management system ensures occupant control over the level of comfort in the space, elevating occupant experience and making the Delta Center a more enjoyable place to work.
The Delta Center is the second World Bank project to be recognized in the LEED Earth program. Its first project, the World Bank Juba Office in South Sudan, achieved LEED Gold for New Construction in 2013. The World Bank Group strives to be an environmentally responsible organization and has undertaken numerous efforts, along with En3 Sustainability Solutions and other green building consultants, to implement sustainability and green measures within its offices around the world.
“The key challenge in working with LEED Earth projects is that there is no ecosystem for modern sustainable design and construction in that region or country. As green consultants, it becomes our responsibility to ensure that the project not only sets a standard for high-performance sustainable design and construction, but also serves as an example for sustainable development in the region that future projects can emulate or even surpass,” says Deepa Sathiaram, LEED Fellow and Executive Director of En3, green building consultants for the World Bank’s LEED Earth projects.
LEED around the world
Currently, there are 160 countries and territories using LEED. LEED Earth has helped catalyze green building in markets where sustainable building practices are not as prevalent, and is an important first step in steering communities toward a more resilient, healthy and sustainable future.
To date, India, China, Mexico and Canada have certified their first LEED v4 Platinum buildings. Countries that have certified their first LEED building as part of the campaign include Bolivia, Burundi, Croatia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Ghana, Honduras, Kenya, Kuwait, Latvia, Lithuania [LINK], Luxembourg, Myanmar, Pakistan, Serbia, South Sudan, Tanzania, Ukraine and Venezuela.
by Amanda Sawit