Director General of DM says body also discussing implementation of a smart online checking system
Hussain Nasser Lootah, Director General of Dubai Municipality, has said that he expects to see a huge influx of new materials and technologies into Dubai due to the expected pre-Expo 2020 construction boom.
All buildings in Dubai must be constructed using ‘green concrete’ by early 2015, Lootah added, pointing out that Dubai Municipality is taking radical steps to ensure that the city maintains its reputation for sustainability in the wake of the announcement.
“We have the largest laboratory in the region, ready to check new materials and technologies are sustainable. We are open to check any material, and are happy to check that it fulfils our sustainability criteria,” he explained.
Lootah’s comments came as he unveiled details for a tough new ‘smart checking system’, which is an emirate-wide move by Dubai Municipality to encourage the use of green concrete. He also briefly discussed plans for ‘Desert Rose’, a new $5.44 billion Emirati housing development being built around sustainable principles.
With Dubai being one of the world’s fastest growing cities, focus tends to remain on the rapid rate of building, Lootah added.
“But it’s about a lot more than just buildings. There’s a lot more projects going on in order to fulfil the needs of a growing city,” he said.
“We already have the best standard of construction and materials in the region. Our Green Building Regulations Guide has 79 chapters and we are working through these chapters to implement all of the directives.”
He explained that the Municipality decided to implement green concrete – concrete that is produced without releasing or creating CO2 – three years ago. The decision came after examining a number of materials in the market, he said, adding that the Municipality will now insist on all buildings being constructed using green concrete by early 2015.
The Municipality has implemented a three-step ‘quick fix’ sustainable solution in buildings; insulation, solar heating and installing LED lighting, Lootah pointed out. Now his department is focusing on the issues surrounding electricity, water and waste.
Another initiative being discussed was the launch of a ‘smart online checking system’ for project proposals.
“Consultants are busy people, so we are launching a new Business Information Management (BIM) system to come between the end user and the Municipality via the internet. Quite often we will reject a proposal due to it not fulfilling the sustainability criteria, and the consultants often simply blame the Municipality rather than revealing to clients it was down to their own omissions.”
“We had to find a better system, so now consultants cannot log their project details unless everything is correct. This makes the process easier for the Municipality; streamlining applications, and will stop consultants from incorrectly apportioning blame,” Lootah said.