Courtyard Marriott: Benchmarking Sustainability

Chakan, a town in Pune, is home to a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) promoted by the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC). Here you will find the stylish and eco-friendly Marriott Courtyard hotel, which recently received a Gold rating by the Indian Green Building Council (IGBC) for successfully achieving the green building standards under LEED by achieving a savings of 35 per cent over the LEED India baseline figures.

The 5-star Marriott Courtyard Hotel, Chakan Pune, has achieved a remarkable savings of 35 per cent over the LEED India baseline figures.

Right from the initial planning of the project, the Marriott Courtyard Hotel set a target of achieving the Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) India Gold Rating. Thereon, measures were taken to balance the luxury required for a 5-star hotel vis-a-vis the standards prescribed by LEED.

Mr. Juzer S Kothari, Managing Director, Conserve Consultants Pvt Ltd, shares the measures undertaken to achieve this and how the LEED Gold rated 5-star hotel ensured the benchmark required for green efficiency and more...

 Efficiency defined: The site area of the project is 1.43 lakh sq ft with a built up area of 1.92 lakh sq ft; height is 134.51 ft. Amenities in the Marriott Courtyard Hotel include a restaurant, fitness center, swimming pool, sports complex, among others. The landscape was designed with minimum turf area and more drought tolerant species for less landscape water consumption. Temporary vegetation (seeding) was done to stabilize the soil. To achieve long-term sustainability throughout the life-cycle of the project, energy and water were identified as key areas to be worked on during the design stage. Multiple strategies such as passive architectural design, energy-efficient envelope material especially the glazing, low lighting power densities in all areas – both indoor as well as outdoors, high efficiency air-conditioning system, heat pumps for hot water generation, etc. were planned. The team at Conserve decided to benchmark the energy consumption pattern to be 10.38 per cent lower that the ASHRAE baseline standards.

 On the water conservation, a meticulous thought process was applied for the various water fixture selections. Besides, a number of measures were implemented during the design and construction, which include less polluting construction techniques, sourcing of recycled materials, indoor air quality requirements by selecting suitable air filters, paints and furniture, proper measurement and verification system were built in, etc. 

Right from the initial planning of the project, Mr. Shakeel Ladakh, the owner of the project set a clear target of LEED India Gold Rating. Accordingly, the project teams and Conserve co-ordinated their efforts to achieve this within ‘budgeted cost’. There is no payback period as the cost to construct the project was achieved within the budget.

 Smart materials: The Marriott Courtyard Hotel makes use of materials with recycled content, such that the sum of post-consumer recycled content plus one-half of the post-industrial recycled content constitutes at least 15.88 per cent of the total value of materials in the project. The advantage is reduced transportation pollution through local sourcing, which in turn helps in improving the local economy. Besides, the focus on recycled material reduces the burden on a virgin material, thereby contributing to preserve nature in its pristine form.

The project has made use of low-VOC paints for application on the furniture, doors, etc., to ensure better indoor air quality. The paints were kept off the site before installation to reduce the adverse effect of chemical sand. Of the total value of materials used, 43.63 per cent is extracted, harvested or recovered, and manufactured within 400 km of the project site.

 Considering lighting and ventilation:An initial design study was undertaken to analyze and improve the building’s daylight and shading. The site was totally barricaded and water sprinkling was ensured to control air pollution. A sun path analysis was carried out at the initial design stage to analyze the self-shading and orientation of the project and to reduce the cooling load.

 The design of the building was streamlined to ensure maximum fresh air ventilation for better productivity. Permanent monitoring systems have been installed and configured to generate an alarm when the airflow values or CO levels vary by 10 per cent or more from the design values in certain fluctuating traffic zones. 

Efficiently saving energy:The hotel has implemented high-efficient HVAC equipment with higher COP to meet the standards and achieve energy cost savings. The project has achieved 10.38 per cent energy cost reduction by implementing ECMs over the ASHRAE standard. Some measures include:

  • Insulated roof with heat reflective tile, efficient double glazing, efficient lighting design, energy efficient water cooled screw chillers, heat pump for hot water.
  • Building occupants, in over 90 per cent of the regularly occupied spaces, have direct lines of sight to perimeter glazing. This has reduced the dependence on artificial light.
  • An energy simulation for energy requirements and indoor air quality was undertaken to achieve energy savings as well as for occupants comfort. 

Treating water : The project has developed and implemented a construction waste management plan to divert 97 per cent of quantities of construction and demolition waste from being sent to the land-fill. A sedimentation basin has been constructed to divert all the waste water and rain water; hence the water let out to the municipality drain is without any soil sediments.

 Further, the use of potable water has been reduced by 35 per cent through the use of efficient flow and flush fixtures. Also, no potable water is being used for irrigation, making use of 100 per cent on-site treated recycled waste water. Additionally, 100 per cent of wastewater is treated to tertiary standards on site and the treated water is provided for 100 per cent cooling tower make up and also for flushing requirements.

 Eco-friendly measures: A sustainable architectural design analysis was undertaken, encompassing all the intricacies of the project. The performance analysis and gap was estimated to chart out the implementation activities of the design features. Besides, the hotel staff of the project has been trained and educated about green building measures and the operation procedure, in order to reduce the operational energy and water consumption. A post occupancy commissioning is planned to analyze and bridge the operational gap to achieve and meet the design standards.

 Making it there: Considering a luxury hotel, indoor air quality was a big challenge while using paints and adhesives. Besides, considering the climate factor and daylight-shading while designing the project was another major challenge encountered. Also, analyzing and reducing energy consumption and minimizing the operating cost was a hurdle. Reducing potable water consumption and treatment to tertiary standards was a difficult task to achieve.

 Overcoming all these challenges, the Marriott Courtyard Hotel undertook various efficient measures and made it large by achieving a Gold rating by the IGBC, not only by successfully achieving the green building standards under LEED, but also with a commendable 35 per cent savings over the LEED India baseline figures. 


This article was originally published in CW: ConstructionWorld Magazine, November 2015 issue

Mr. Juzer S Kothari is Managing Director of Conserve Consultants. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering from the prestigious IIT Kharagpur. Mr. Juzer is one of early adopter of green building technologies in India ; a LEED Accredited Professional (from United States Green Building Council-USGBC) since 2007 and a Certified Trainer for GRIHA Rating System. He is a part of ‘Train the Trainers’ faculty programme of National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Department of Energy- USA, for their Energy Simulation Software. A Certified Energy Auditor and Manager from Bureau of Energy Efficiency, Ministry of Energy, Government of India and ECBC Empanelled Expert (Energy Conservation Building Code, a UNDP-GEF-BEE programme). Mr. Juzer has been in the energy industry for the last 30+ years including 11 years of super specialized expertise pertinent to high performance, sustainable green buildings. He is the recipient of LEED Fellow Award 2016 by GBCI-USGBC for his pioneering contribution to green building movement.

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