Sunday, June 26, 2016

Eco City in an Eco Park

Yesterday we had a workshop on "Green Buildings and Sustainable Development" in collaboration with TERI / GRIHA at Rabindra Tirtha. The pics above relate to that. The top pic is a thermal image of a typical urban built up area which shows that area around trees are considerably cooler than concrete buildings primarily because trees give about 750-1,500 litres of water into the atmosphere through transpiration.

I mentioned that we are, under inspiration from CM, trying to project New Town as a Green City. Some advances made are as follows:

1. West Bengal was the first state in India to have declared that a 10% additional FAR would be given for Green Buildings.
2. For New Town, a notification is being issued that says that for being qualified to get the additional FAR, the building must be certified Gold Rated (under IGBC) or 4-Star Rated (under Griha Rating)
3. In all cases, for availing of the extra 10% FAR, a extra 10% of the land cost will have to be paid to Hidco.
4. Hidco has applied to IGBC (Indian Green Building Council, an affiliate of CII) for helping it to get a status of Green City.
5. Many green efforts do not succeed at the building level: it must be done at the city level. New Town is creating a document that will enable city level  rain water harvesting and recycling and waste water recycling (see Time of India clipping below)
6. All government building rooftops in New Town will have Solar Panels; many already do. There are solar panels on important public buildings (Coal India, NKDA, Rabi Rashmi etc) and public spaces (water of Smritibon, canal near Eco Park etc). Search for technology is going on for using Solar Panels on pathways in public parks.
7. Cycle tracks are being laid out. Public Cycle schemes are being worked out. DPR by IIT Kharagpur is already finalised.
8. E-Rickshaws / Totos are encouraged as last-mile-public-transport. With CSR assistance from Coal India, we are getting 3 electric buses and one electric car (the electric car has already been delivered and is being tested) to set an example.
9. Tall tree nursery has been set up. Large scale plantations have been planned from 14 July this year. A tree census has been planned. Canal-side land is being given on rent for raising nurseries by professionals.
10. A  pilot organic rooftop garden is being developed on a market building where coconut fibre-in-cement-bags will be given drip irrigation and micro-nutrient to produce rooftop vegetables under the shade of translucent solar panel shades.
11. Much of New Town Street  lights already  use  LEDs. Remaining halogen ones will be phased out gradually. Smart atmospheric clock timed switches turn off and turn on street lights at correct times.
12. Appliances like air-conditioners will be 5-star rated, the most efficient energy-wise, not necessarily the cheapest.
13. "Green" also means young, youth and new. Wi Fi along the Biswa Bangla Sarani is the only one of its kind in India (if you observe, you will often see clusters of young students taking benefit of 30 minutes' free Wi Fi on roadsides!). There will be more Wi Fi hotspots (KPMG is making a DPR). A start-up building is being constructed in Action Area 1. Educational Hub, Finance Hub and IT Hub will bring green students many job opportunities.
14. Eco Park, Eco Urban Village, Seniors' Park, Sensory Park, Children's Park and triangular traffic rotary raised lawns provide a variety of  green choices for all, young and old. A fine work life balance for all, New Town's tagline will be : "Eco City in an Eco Park"
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Times of India dt 26 June 2016


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