The new OPD block of Railway Hospital, Vijayawada in South Central Railway has been awarded Platinum Rating under the ‘New Service Building’ category by the Indian Green Building Council (IGBC). This is the first service building of the Vijayawada division that has been facilitated with the platinum rating by the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII)- IGBC. The new OPD building scored 51 points during the review process by IGBC.
About the Platinum Rating
The platinum rating certificate awarded to Vijayawada is valid for a period of three years and has been awarded for the green initiatives undertaken at the OPD service building. The evaluation of ranking was based on seven environmental categories defined by IGBC Green Service Buildings category namely, Site Planning and Design; Water Conservation; Energy Efficiency; Building Materials and Resources; Health and Well Being; Green Measures beyond the Fence; Innovation and Performance.
The IGBC-CII, with the support of the Environment Directorate of Indian Railways, has developed the Green-Co Rating System to facilitate the adoption of green concepts, thereby reducing the adverse environmental impacts.
What does the platinum rating imply?
The rating system is a way to address national priorities like water conservation, handling of waste, energy efficiency, reduced use of fossil fuel, etc. Further, any entity that has been awarded the platinum rating indicates that they have undertaken green measures, that are eco-friendly and beneficial for the environment. It also indicates the responsibility of organizations towards the environment and nature.
Features at the new OPD
The new OPD block has been designed in such a way that it addresses a number of environmental concerns. High SRI tiles have been used in the exposed roof areas which help in mitigating heat. SRI or solar reflectance index tiles have the ability to reject solar heat, which helps in keeping the area cool.
The OPD building has also focussed on efficient energy performance by making use of LED fixtures, 5-star rated ceiling fans and AC’s and other green pro certified materials. These are of higher quality. Further, 100% roof and non-roof rainwater run-off is captured by rainwater harvesting (RWH) percolation pits.
The OPD has been constructed in such a way that it restores more than 18% of the site area with natural topography and vegetation. It also has a vertical garden. Also, by making use of low-flow water fixtures, more than 31% reduction in water has been ensured.
Other features include treated fresh air which is supplied for all the regularly air-conditioned spaces and 10 kWp capacity solar panels installed on the roof of the building.
Indian Green Building Council (IGBC)was formed by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in 2001 to fasten the green building movement in India.
The vision of the council is to facilitate ‘India to be one of the global leaders in green buildings by 2015’. IGBC provides various green building design tools and certification services for the entire Indian construction industry.
Railway’s green initiative
The Indian Railways has embarked on an eco-friendly transformation journey. Recently, the Vijayawada railway station’s premises was transformed into an eco-friendly environment. The station produces 130KW solar power, the highest on Indian Railways.
Other green transformations include electrification of railways, reduction in the use of plastics, switching to bio-toilets, adopting greener options to attain the target of net-zero carbon emitter before 2030, installation of solar panels, switching to LED lights on stations and service buildings, installation of automatic coach washing plants, and more.
Moreover, the Railways has also undertaken major renovation projects of station premises to take advantage of existing infrastructure in the country, the most recent example being the renovation of the Gandhinagar railway station.
Speaking of green co-rating service, in the past, Secunderabad Railway Station was awarded the platinum rating certificate in 2019, while Vijayawada railway station has been certified the gold rating. Other stations of the South Central Railways to receive a gold rating in the past include Tirupati Railway station and office buildings of Rail Nilayam, Hyderabad Bhavan, Rail Vikas Bhavan among several others.