SM Aura first mall to achieve LEED Gold in the retail sector in the country
SM Aura Premier is currently the first and sole mall in the Philippines to achieve LEED Gold in the retail sector and the largest LEED retail project in the Philippines based on gross square feet.
The LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating system, developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), is the foremost program for buildings, homes and communities that are designed, constructed, maintained and operated for improved environmental and human health performance.
According to LEED Consultant Raymond Andrew Sih, SM Aura achieved LEED Gold by meeting and exceeding international standards in indoor air quality, thermal comfort, then energy and water efficiency. He cited the mall’s very own waste water treatment plant that recycles water for non-potable use, the energy efficient LED lighting system, the centralized air conditioning system cooled with recycled water, and double low emissivity insulated glass panels, to name a few. In addition, the entire operation is run optimally with regular measurement and verification.
“SM Aura Premier was built with the environment in mind. Almost a third of the cost of construction materials were locally sourced, over twenty percent of the cost of construction materials were from recycled materials, and over ninety-five percent of the construction waste was recycled,” Sih said.
Sih also pointed out SM Aura Premier’s Sky Park, which covers more than half of the building. The roof garden, according to Sih, not only “provides visitors with a great place to dine, relax and enjoy views from up high; it also gives plants plenty of soil, recycled water, and room to grow while protecting the building from the heat of the sun.”
Apart from this outdoor green feature, SM Aura also maintains good indoor air quality for its occupants. The mall is also conveniently located where one can walk or bike to various businesses, offices, homes, public amenities, and transportation facilities.
Mahesh Ramanujam, president and CEO of USGBC, underscored the significance of SM Aura Premier’s LEED Gold certification. “Achieving LEED certification is more than implementing sustainable practices. It represents a commitment to making the world a better place and influencing others to do better,” Ramanujam said. “Given the extraordinary importance of climate protection and the central role of the building industry in that effort, SM Aura Premier demonstrates their leadership through their LEED certification of Gold.”