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Sandton Gate awarded 4-star Sustainable Precincts certification

Sandton Gate has been awarded a four-star certification under the Green Star SA Sustainable Precincts v1.1 tool, following the project's second-round submission in mid-August. Developed by Abland and Tiber, phase one of the development achieved a five-star Green Star SA Office v1.1 Design certification in July 2019.
Sandton Gate rendering. Image supplied.
Sandton Gate rendering. Image supplied.

The project is located in Sandton on William Nicol Drive between Sandton Drive and Republic Road. In addition to its proximity to the Sandton CBD, the project falls within the City of Johannesburg’s public transport network and is directly adjacent to the Braamfontein Spruit, one of Johannesburg’s longest natural greenbelts – a situation that offers enormous advantages in terms of sustainable urban development.

From the outset, the developers committed to meet the site-wide requirements under the Sustainable Precincts tool, which was developed to influence and incentivise developers to consider good design, community and environmental outcomes. Credits within the tool – under the categories Governance, Liveability, Economic Prosperity and Environment – are intended to assist in site selection, site analysis and site layout; and include benchmarks for engaging with stakeholders in site planning. Site-wide green infrastructure, in terms of both hard and soft works, is also encouraged.

As part of the precinct’s ongoing sustainable management initiatives, a Community Users’ Guide was developed to give occupants the tools and knowledge to efficiently operate all service and management systems. The guide describes all green initiatives that have been implemented with the intention of enhancing environmental performance and minimising environmental impact and harm during Sandton Gate’s operational lifespan. This includes ensuring that all future alterations, additions and programme changes are consistent with the vision of the users’ guide and the health of the environment.

Sandton Gate rendering. Image supplied.
Sandton Gate rendering. Image supplied.

Community management

Annelide Sherratt, senior sustainable building consultant at Solid Green Consulting, observed that the mixed-use project received its certification just in time for the GBCSA Convention 2019, which was themed ‘Beyond: Shaping Cities of Tomorrow’. “This development is a precedent study of what it means to go beyond certifying buildings to apply sustainability at a precinct scale. The project has also gone beyond the limits of the precinct boundary and has committed to the upliftment and upgrading of the Braamfontein Spruit and park adjacent to the site, which will be managed together with the surrounding community.”

In addition to the rehabilitation of Bordeaux Riverside Park, the community management and development initiatives include monthly litter collection as part of the A Re Sebetseng Campaign, investment into cycle paths, art installations, LED night-time lighting, and a community food garden.

Accessibility and non-motorised transport

The Precinct Plan has been strategically designed to incorporate adequate non-motorised transport (NMT) facilities. An extensive network of walkways will be provided between the residential, commercial and business components, with a shared pedestrian and cycle path along Minerva Avenue to promote the integration of non-motorised transport. Raised pedestrian crossings and universal access design at the internal intersections will supplement the connectivity for NMT users between the various land-uses. In addition, Minerva Road will have a cul-de-sac at either end to restrict through-traffic and provide a safe pedestrian/cyclist environment.

Current and future public transport connectivity includes access to the Gautrain Bus Route S4 Randburg-to-Sandton; Gautrain train and bus routes from Sandton Gautrain Station; and the Rea Vaya BRT system, where a trunk route and additional three BRT stations are planned for the vicinity.

Sandton Gate rendering. Image supplied.
Sandton Gate rendering. Image supplied.

Recycling waste

Three primary waste management schemes have been strategised to decrease the environmental impact of the waste produced on location. Recycling containers will be placed in designated areas for use by business and residential tenants and the public. Materials that are suitable for recycling under this scheme are paper and cardboard; beverage cans; plastic containers and glass containers.

On a weekly basis, gardening service providers will remove green waste to a central point for composting. Residential tenants will also be able to make use of this scheme by separating organic waste for collection and disposal as part of the composting scheme. Residents will also be able to benefit from an additional recycling service at no extra charge, which will provide for the collection and disposal of recycled materials from homes – paper and cardboard, plastic, household metals and glass.

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