‘Greening’ refers to improving a property’s efficiency in the use of energy, water and resources, and improving its ‘indoor environmental quality’. Recent studies internationally show that green buildings significantly outperform non-green buildings on all investment criteria, including rental, operating costs, and capital value.
Tower’s greening strategy is aimed at increasing the competitiveness and values of properties and adopting sound sustainability practices to reduce the negative impact of our buildings on the environment.
The operational focus is on improving energy, water and resource efficiency to reduce operating costs and lower carbon footprint.
Covid-19 has forced businesses to assess their daily commutes, their cost of occupancy, the amount of space they keep, their willingness to allow staff to work from home, etc. This is having an impact as to tenants’ property choices. Tower is positioning its property portfolio to remain attractive to tenants despite these changing requirements by keeping our costs low, operating shared work space environments and flexible leases, marketing our community based properties to their immediate catchment area allowing tenants to save costs and time on travel, etc.
Tower has adopted an active strategy of ‘greening’ properties over time. The initial focus is on improving energy efficiency, which results in savings in electricity costs, thus making buildings more competitive and helping to “future-proof” them against future rises in tariffs.
Basic energy and water savings measures that can be implemented at low or no cost are being applied. Larger capital intense projects are reviewed on merit. The largest property, Cape Quarter, has recently installed solar on its total roof area at an IRR of 17%.
Buildings are benchmarked against the Green Building Council of South Africa’s ‘Energy and Water Benchmarking tool’ and their improvement in performance is monitored and reported on. These measures increase the competitiveness and values of buildings in Tower’s portfolio over time.
Tower owns a 5-Star Green Star SA-rated building, and a soon to be rated 6-Star (the highest level of rating) property and will continue to seek out green buildings (and “green” it’s current properties) in its future acquisitions (recognising, however, that stock is currently scarce).