JTC awarded Platinum Super-low Energy Certification for MET buildings

JTC’s mass engineered timber building

Singaporean industrial estate and infrastructure developer JTC has announced that Singapore’s Punggol Digital District (PDD) has received the Building and Construction Authority’s (BCA’s) Platinum Award for Green Mark Districts, which aims to recognise the highest level of environmentally friendly and sustainable practices in the master planning, design and implementation of district developments.

Comprising JTC business park and the Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) Punggol Campus, PDD at 50 hectares is the reportedly the “largest mixed-use Green Mark Platinum District in Singapore”, according to JTC, employing at-scale sustainable practices in energy efficiency, water efficiency, material and waste management, environmental planning, green buildings and transport.

The district’s buildings achieved Green Mark Platinum for 17 buildings developed by JTC and SIT. Active systems work in combination with passive design strategies to achieve thermal comfort and energy efficiency, including:

  • North-south orientation to boost natural ventilation, with service spaces to buffer the east and west facades
  • High performance facades with 30% reduction in heat gain and keeping the indoors cool
  • Maximising natural daylighting with smart lighting controls

On top of the Green Mark Platinum Award, BCA awarded Platinum Super-low Energy Certification for two mass engineered timber (MET) buildings within the PDD: the JTC building, and SIT’s Food Court.

JTC’s eight-storey MET building is the tallest timber industrial building in Singapore. It achieves an embodied carbon performance of 15kgCO2e/m2, which is 98% lower than BCA’s benchmark at 1,000kgCO2e/m2 for non-residential buildings.

Timber used for the building construction was sourced from sustainably managed forests, where new trees would be continuously planted to replace those that are harvested. Apart from being environmentally sustainable, the MET was fabricated off-site, providing better construction quality control and higher productivity with 60% reduction in on-site manpower, compared to traditional construction methods.

A look inside JTC’s MET building

SIT’s Food Court adopts hybrid cooling and has a Building Integrated Photovoltaic (BIPV) roof that generates renewable energy. The Super-low Energy Food Court is also a showcase of energy-efficiency and data-driven automation in building operations, providing visitors with a comfortable dining experience optimised to the prevailing weather conditions.

SIT’s Multi-Purpose Hall is also awarded the Platinum Super-low Energy Certification for its adoption of passive displacement ventilation for efficient cooling and its use of high performance glass on the windows to achieve high solar heat reduction. These energy-efficient buildings will achieve at least 40% energy savings.

PDD is master planned and developed by JTC with WOHA as the master plan designer and lead consultant from planning to construction. The SIT Punggol Campus, developed by SIT and designed together with WOHA Architects and RSP Architects Planners & Engineers, will be able to accommodate 12,000 students. The first phase of Punggol Digital District, which covers 21 hectares, will open progressively from Q3 2024.

With integrated passive design strategies alongside advanced mechanical and electrical systems, the district will achieve 35% reduction in operational carbon emissions yearly, equivalent to taking 4,000 cars off the road. Other sustainable features of the PDD include:

  • Solar photovoltaic (PV) panels are installed across multiple rooftops, producing over 3,000 megawatt-hours of clean energy annually, equivalent to the annual energy consumption of 11,000 three-room Housing Development Board (HDB) flats.
  • Interconnected district cooling plants with a combined cooling capacity of over 30,000 refrigeration tonnes, which improves energy efficiency through economies of scale.
  • An underground pneumatic waste conveyance system implemented to minimise heavy vehicle traffic, noise, pests and odours associated with traditional waste collection.

Nelson Liew, group director, New Estates, JTC, commented: “PDD epitomises urban sustainability as the largest mixed-use Green Mark Platinum district, and exemplifies JTC’s commitment to smart and sustainable industrial development.

“Seamlessly integrating built structures, energy efficiency, water conservation, waste management, mobility solutions, and green spaces, these sustainable features are intertwined on a district-wide scale through meticulous upfront planning, cultivating an estate that is not only highly liveable and environmentally sustainable, but also catering to the needs of those who work, live, play, and learn within and around the district.”

Gerry Wee, associate vice-president, Estates, SIT, said: “Sustainability lies at the core of our vision for the SIT Punggol Campus. Our commitment to environmental stewardship is evident in every aspect of our design, which is a testament to our dedication to a greener, more sustainable future.

“The SIT Punggol Campus has already achieved several accolades such as Green Mark Platinum with two Super Low Energy buildings and ABC Waters Certification (Gold) for its sustainable design features. With the campus designed as a Living Lab, SIT intends to further its sustainability efforts through education and research.”

Images: JTC