IN RESPONSE to homebuyers' concerns with the environment and wellness relating to properties, major developers in the country have been striving for green certifications from prestigious, global institutes.
In a recent interview, Sansiri Plc’s chief operating officer Uthai Uthaisangsuk said: "We have obtained LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification from The US Green Building Council for the company's 98 Wireless condominium project, developed as a green architecture."
It was the first residential project in Thailand to have been awarded the certification, followed by Park Venture, Energy Complex, Kasikorn Bank Learning Centre, among others.
Associate Professor Dr Singh Intrachooto, head of Kasetsart University's Creative Centre for Ecodesign and Scrap Lab , said public's concerns about the environment have led to a shift of focus in design and higher standards among property developers in order to obtain certifications for LEED and TREES ( Thai Rating of Energy and Environmental Sustainability) from the Thai Green building Institute. The Thai institute was established by the Engineering Institute of Thailand and the Association of Siamese Architects under the Royal Patronage.
The TREES website shows 98 building have applied for its certification with 35 having been certified under the silver, gold and platinum categories. Criteria for the certification covers a projects' design,construction process as well as energy sources.
In line with the trend, a certification for well-being was initiated by the US' International WELL Building Institute in 2017, with an emphasis on the wellness of people residing in a building, in terms of air and water qualities, lightings, fitness, ease of mind and convenience through innovations.
Since 2017, 929 projects in 34 countries with a total space of over 175 million square metres have applied for WELL certification, as stated on WellCertified.com.
Given the concerns with environment and wellness, all parties involved in a property project - architects, interior designers and developers, have entered into a new era.
Singh said equal importance must be given to green and well-being designs in the development of a project to ensure the quality of living of its residents.
To achieve wellness, an interior designer should observe people's behaviours, research and develop green and non-toxic construction materials for the safety of all residents in a building, regardless of their ages.
“Wellness is not easy to achieve, but is the way to improve the quality of living ,” he said.