Wednesday, September 09, 2009

B'loreans ready to go the extra green mile

B'loreans ready to go the extra green mile

Building with 'environmentally responsible' Material

Bosky Khanna. Bangalore



Getting round-the-clock water and electricity connections to your new house may be challenging, and perhaps that is why the 'green house' is getting wider acceptance in the city.
The green house is specially constructed to use less water; it optimises energy efficiency, conserves natural resources, generates less waste and provides healthier spaces for the occupants, compared to conventional houses.
The building materials for such houses are composed of renewable resources. "We use material that is 'environmentally responsible,' because we care more about its impact than the life of the product," said Chandrashekar Hariharan, director Biodiversity Conservation India Private Limited (BCIL). "We use soil blocks, non-synthetic pesticides, non-chemical products and non-ceramic tiles for the construction. Fly-ash mixed with cement is used to join the blocks. We employ solar panels, wind turbines, rain water harvesting system, solar based ventilators, natural flooring and storm-water recycling system in the building. These houses also have water meters attached to showers and kitchen taps which display the amount of water used or wasted in litres each time the tap is turned on," he said.
Even though such houses are slightly more expensive, many people are coming forward to build them, said Hariharan. "People are opting for them because they have realised that they can save up to 50% in water, electricity and maintenance charges in the long run. Green apartments cost between Rs30 lakh to Rs1.5 crore," he said.
The basic construction cost of the green house is 8-10% higher than the normal house, said Anup Naik, director architecture, Space Matrix. "The trend has picked up in the last one-and- half years. Cost of apartments varies based on location, availability of resources, material used for construction and size. Today, more and more architects are acquiring special training to build such houses," he said.

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